There are more than a third of adults who wake up in the middle of the night twice or thrice to go to the bathroom. If you are one of them, here are some tips that can help you overcome the urinary incontinence at night. According to the National Association for Continence, there are at least two percent of adults who lack control over their bladders while sleeping and more than a third of adults who wake up twice or thrice in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom.
Urinary Incontinence at Night can Strike in Two Ways:
Adult Nocturnal Enuresis: About 1 to 2 in every 100 adults lose control over their bladder while sleeping resulting in bed wetting at night, hence this is commonly referred to as adult bedwetting. Stress and urinary tract infections can cause nocturnal enuresis.
Nocturia: Waking up at the middle of the night frequently to urinate. This can occur at any age but is most common among 60+ adults. This is usually associated with many diseases besides urinary incontinence like diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.
Strategies to deal with Urinary Incontinence at night: There are many ways to overcome urinary incontinence at night. Some of them are as follows:
- Restrict fluid intake after 6pm in the evening or a couple of hours before bedtime.
- Limit or avoid the intake of bladder irritants like caffeine and alcohol in the evening.
- When resting in the afternoon, elevate your legs which will help stimulate the flow of fluid in the body. Use of compression stockings could also help.
- Practice bladder training exercises to improve urinary control.
- Practicing on holding your urine during daytime could help have a good control during night.
- Ask for medication during your visit to the doctor. Your doctor might prescribe a diuretic which can reduce the fluid levels during the daytime. This could help you having to visit the bathroom multiple times at night. Anticholinergic drugs help relax the bladder and make it easier to hold more urine at night.
- Start using the bedwetting alarm which wakes you up in the night during bedwetting. These alarms often help train your body to wake you up before you wet the bed.
It takes time to get a handle on your urinary incontinence at night. While you are working on that, there are some products that can help protect your bed and linens from urine. Look for mattress covers that are water repellant fabric covers which breathe and allow your body sweat to evaporate. These covers are also available for blankets, pillows and sleeping bags. Another good option would be to use absorbent briefs and pads also known as adult diapers, adult absorbent underwear which can be worn at night to absorb urine from urinary incontinence at night. These absorbent products are usually disposable.
Lastly if you have a problem with urinary incontinence at night, discuss it with your doctor and experiment until you find a solution that is long lasting and allows you to sleep more peacefully.
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