Sometimes you gotta go, some times you really gotta go! In most cases, there's a completely logical reason for these sudden urges, like holding it until the end of a movie or waiting to get into a concert. But other times, a frequent need to pee can be a sign that your body needs help with something. By learning about some of the common symptoms and causes, you can better determine if "nature is calling" for something serious, or just because your new year's resolution was to drink more water.
What Is Considered "Frequent" When it Comes to Urination?
Everyone is different, and how often you pee depends largely on how much you drink during the day or right before you go to bed. Usually, urinating between six and eight times throughout a day is considered normal. If you're visiting the bathroom more than that or getting up more than once to pee during the night, you could be experiencing frequent urination.
Though often lumped together with frequent urination, "incontinence" refers to a lack of control over your bladder that results in leakage or involuntary urination—something typically seen in young and old humans. While the causes at fault may be different, the disruption to your day and distress they bring can be pretty similar.
Reasons I Could Feel Like I Have to Pee Constantly
If after peeing you feel like peeing again, it could be due to a number of things, such as:
Contracting a Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections, or UTIs, aren't fun, but they are the most common cause of frequent urination. Most women get a UTI at least once in their life. These infections occur when bacteria from either the rectum or the skin enters the urethra, causing an infection of the urinary tract. Left untreated, this infection can be dangerous, resulting in a bladder infection (cystitis), or a kidney infection (pyelonephritis).
Infections of the bladder are usually associated with frequent urination and are far more common. Kidney infections, sometimes caused by untreated bladder infections, are a bit more serious than bladder infections.
Though anyone can contract a UTI, people with vaginas are more susceptible to them. This is because their urethra's are both shorter and located closer to the rectum, giving bacteria easy access to the urinary tract. Some other things that increase the chances of getting a UTI are poor hygiene, sexual activity, especially when it's with a new partner, pregnancy, and problems with the structure of the urinary tract, such as prostate enlargement (for people with prostates).
Aside from constantly feeling the need to pee regardless of whether your bladder is empty, other symptoms of a UTI-related bladder infection include a burning feeling while peeing, blood in the urine, and a cramping sensation in the lower abdomen. Luckily, there are some super simple things you can do to reduce your chances of getting a UTI, like:
- Avoid holding your pee by going to the bathroom whenever you feel the urge
- Stay hydrated
- Clean your genitals and rectum every day
- Stay away from hygiene sprays and douches
- Take showers instead of baths
- Wear breathable, cotton underwear
- Wipe from front to back
- Urinate before and after you have sex
If, despite even your best efforts, you get a urinary tract infection, you can take comfort in knowing that UTI treatment is easy and painless.
Drinking Too Many Fluids
Obvious, sure, but still worth mentioning. What goes in must come out; so if you're hydrating continuously, it follows that you may constantly be feeling the need to pee. How much hydration your body actually needs varies depending on your environment and activity level. If you feel like you're peeing too often, it could be that you're consuming more fluids than your body can use.
Overloading on Diuretics
Diuretics are substances that are linked to feeling like wanting to pee all the time. Some of the most common culprits are caffeine and alcohol, but things like artificial sweeteners and acidic drinks or foods can also contain diuretics. Additionally, there are certain medications that have diuretic side effects, such as blood pressure medication. If you regularly partake in any of these, it could be causing you to pee more often.
Having an Overactive Bladder
Those with an overactive bladder experience things like urinary frequency, urinary urgency and urinary incontinence due to having a bladder muscle that squeezes without warning or too frequently. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, 40% of women and 30% of men experience these symptoms. Oftentimes the cause is unknown, but it has been linked to neurological disorders, like Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injuries. Thankfully, there are treatment and therapy options available for those afflicted with an overactive bladder, including over-the-counter medication, a gel or patch that is placed on the skin and prescribed oral medications.
There are innumerable "fun" symptoms associated with pregnancy, and feeling like you have to urinate all the time is just one of them. Early on in pregnancy, this urge is caused by the release of a hormone that ramps up the blood flow to the pelvic region. Later on, the blame gets transferred to additional pressure from the fetus on the bladder.
Struggling With Stress or Anxiety
Though it's not exactly clear why, feelings of nervousness or worry can sometimes cause frequent urination. The belief is that it may have to do with the body's fight or flight reaction to stressful situations. If you're dealing with anxiety at home, work, in social situations or just generally, developing stress management strategies could be really helpful for decreasing or eliminating feeling like you have to pee all the time.
There is nothing fun about continuously feeling like you have to pee (well, not when it's you having to pee all the time), but especially when the urge strikes at a party or while you're at work. Next time you feel like you're peeing a little too often, examine your other symptoms and decide whether it's possible that you have a UTI. At wisp, we've made UTI treatment easy and discreet. Our UTI meds are prescribed online and available the same exact day at your local pharmacy.