Frequent urination is either as an increase in total volume of urine or a dysfunction in the storage and emptying of urine. If someone (especially women above age 40) needs to urinate more than eight times a day or is waking up in the night to go to the bathroom more than once in the night is considered frequent urination. The bladder can often hold as much about 2 ½ cups of urine. The urge to urinate is usually felt when the bladder contains about just over ½ cup.
Frequent Urination Causes
- Artificial sweeteners, alcohol, caffeine and other foods: Alcohol and caffeine can act as diuretics, which can cause more frequent urination. Carbonated drinks, artificial sweeteners (such as Splenda or Equal), and citrus fruits are known to irritate the bladder, causing more frequent urination
- Bladder cancer: Tumors taking up space or causing bleeding in the bladder may lead to more frequent urination.
- Diabetes: An early symptom of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can be frequent urination, as the body tries to rid itself of unused glucose (blood sugar) through the urine. Diabetes can also damage the nerves that control the bladder, causing frequent urination and difficulty controlling your bladder
- Diuretic use: Medications used to treat high blood pressure or fluid buildup work in the kidney and flush excess fluid from the body, causing frequent urination.
- Drinking too much: Ingesting more fluids than your body needs can cause the body to urinate more often.
- Interstitial cystitis: This condition is characterized by pain in the bladder and pelvic region, often leading to frequent urination.
- Urinary tract infection: The lining of the urethra which is the tube that carries urine from the bladder out of the body and bladder becomes inflamed and irritated due to byproducts of an infection such as blood, white blood cells, bacteria. This irritation of the bladder wall causes the urge to empty the bladder frequently.
- Prescription Drugs: The average senior citizen in America is on 12 different medications(!) Many prescription drugs will have frequent urination as side effects. Check your drug information on-line or with your Doctor to determine what frequent urination side effects are from which prescription.
- Pregnancy: Hormonal changes and the growing uterus placing pressure on the bladder cause frequent urination, even in the early weeks of gestation. The trauma from vaginal childbirth can also cause damage to the urethra.
- Prostate problems: An enlarged prostate can press against the urethra and block the flow of urine, causing the bladder wall to become irritated. The bladder contracts even when it contains small amounts of urine, causing more frequent urination. Brachytherapy which is sealed source radiotherapy or “seed treatment” for prostate cancer, can cause frequent urination in about one-third of patients.
- Overactive bladder syndrome: Often frequent urination is itself the problem. Involuntary bladder contractions lead to frequent and often urgent urination, even if the bladder is not full.
- Scar Tissue: after surgery to the bladder area can result in frequent urination.
- Stroke or other neurological diseases: Damage to nerves that supply the bladder can lead to problems with bladder function, including frequent and sudden urges to urinate.
- Frequency: urinating more than eight times during the day or more than once overnight
- Hesitancy: incomplete evacuation of the bladder during each episode of urination. There may be a sudden stoppage of the urine flow due to spasms in the bladder or urethra or there may be difficulty starting the flow of urine.
- Urgency: the uncomfortable feeling of pressure in the bladder that makes you feel you have to go “right now”
- Urinary incontinence: the inability to control the flow of urine, leading to either constant or intermittent accidental leakage
- Dysuria: pain or burning sensation during or immediately following urination. This may be a sign of a urinary tract infection.
- Hematuria: Blood in the urine can be small amounts, clots, or very bloody. This will usually cause the urine to appear darker in color.
- Nocturia: This is having to wake up to urinate. It can also be associated with nighttime urinary incontinence. (In children, this includes wetting the bed.)
- Pollakiuria: frequent daytime urination
Homeopathic Remedies for Frequent Urination and Cystitis
- Aconitum: This remedy is often useful when a person feels anxious both before and during urination, with hot, scanty urine, and a burning or spasmodic feeling in the outlet of the bladder. It can also be helpful if retention of urine occurs after a person has been very cold and chilled, or after a shaking experience.
- Apis mellifica: This remedy is indicated when the person frequently needs to urinate, but only small quantities are passed. Stinging and burning sensations are felt especially with the last few drops. The person may also experience soreness in the abdomen. Heat and touch make the symptoms worse, and cold applications, cool bathing, and open air bring relief. A lack of thirst is another indication that Apis may be needed.
- Belladonna: This remedy may be beneficial if urging to urinate is frequent and intense, and the bladder feels very sensitive. A cramping or writhing sensation may be felt in the bladder area. Small amounts of highly-colored urine pass. This remedy is sometimes helpful if a person passes small amounts of blood and no serious cause can be found on medical examination.
- Berberis vulgaris: Cystitis with twinges of cutting pain, or a burning feeling that extends to the urethra and its opening, may indicate a need for this remedy. The passage may also burn at times when no attempt at urination is being made. After emptying the bladder, the person feels as if some urine still remains inside. Urging and discomfort are often worse from walking.
- Cantharis: Strong urging to urinate with cutting pains that are felt before the urine passes, as well as during and after—may indicate a need for this remedy. Only several drops pass at a time, with a scalding sensation. The person may feel as if the bladder has not been emptied, still feeling a constant urge to urinate.
- Borax: This remedy can be helpful for cystitis with smarting pain in the urinary opening and aching in the bladder, with a feeling that the urine is retained. Children may cry or shriek, afraid to urinate because they know the pain is coming. Borax is often indicated for people who are sensitive to noise and inclined toward motion sickness.
- Chimaphila umbellata: If a person has a troublesome urge to urinate but has to strain (or even stand up and lean forward) to make it pass, this remedy may be useful. A scalding sensation may be felt while the urine flows, with a feeling of straining afterward.
- Clematis: This remedy may be indicated if a person has to urinate frequently with only a small amount being passed. A feeling of constriction is felt in the urinary passage, and the flow may be interrupted, or there may be dribbling afterward. A tingling sensation may occur, lasting long after urination is finished.
- Equisetum: If cystitis is accompanied by dull but distressing pain and a feeling of fullness in the bladder, even after urinating, this remedy may be helpful. Urging and discomfort are more intense when the bladder has recently been emptied, improving over time as the bladder become more full.
- Kreosotum: for an overactive bladder with a sudden urge to urinate. The person needs to hurry to urinate whenever the urge arises. The frequency of urination is also high. Usually, urine is also highly offensive. Kreosotum is also used in cases where there is involuntary urination on lying down or on coughing.
- Lycopodium: This remedy may be helpful if a person has to urinate frequently during the night and passes large amounts of urine. Or the person may feel a painful urge, but has to strain to make the urine flow. Pain may be felt in the back before the urine passes. (If fever is present, the urine has a reddish color, or discomfort is felt in the kidney region, the person should see a doctor.)
- Nux vomica: Irritable bladder with a constant need to urinate, passing only small amounts, suggests a need for this remedy. Burning or cramping pain may be felt in the bladder area, with an itching sensation in the urethra while the urine passes. The person may feel very irritable, impatient, and chilly. Symptoms may be relieved by hot baths or other forms of warmth.
- Sarsaparilla: This remedy is often useful in cystitis and often helps when symptoms are unclear, or if other remedies have not been effective. Frequent urging is felt, with burning pain at the end of urination. Urine passes when the person is standing up, but only dribbling occurs while sitting. Flakes or sediment are sometimes seen in the urine. Sometimes helpful when stones are forming or the kidneys are involved.
- Sepia: This remedy may be helpful if a person has to urinate frequently, with sudden urging, a sense that urine will leak if urination is delayed, and small amounts of involuntary urine loss. The person may experience a bearing-down feeling in the bladder region, or pressure above the pubic bone. A person who needs this remedy often feels worn-out and irritable, with cold extremities, and a lax or sagging feeling in the pelvic area.
- Staphysagria: This remedy is often indicated for cystitis that develops in a woman after sexual intercourse, especially if sexual activity is new to her, or if cystitis occurs after every occasion of having sex. Pressure may be felt in the bladder after urinating, as if it is still not empty. A sensation that a drop of urine is rolling through the urethra, or a constant burning feeling, are other indications. Useful for cystitis that develops after illnesses with extended bed rest, or after the use of catheters.