How to get more sleep?

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Sometimes I get up twice a night, sometimes 6,7 or more times.  I've tried to get to bed at the same time, eat dinner at the same time, avoid spices and alcohol, stop drinking lots of liquids about 3 in the afternoon. But still my nights are very different and I'm trying to figure out why or what I can do to have more good nights sleep.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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38 Replies

  • Posted

    Have you compared your intake to your output. Presumably you must be passing considerably more during the night than in the day.
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  • Posted

    This probably isn't the long term option, but i was up sometimes 10 times as well. Sometimes less, it seems like sometimes I'd be able to sleep and on different nights I kept getting up I would pee and not empty my bladder but it would stop and soon as I would lay down and get back in the bed I felt I had to get up and pee again and that would reoccur Time After Time After Time. So I found out that lack of sleep really does age you as I started to develop bags under my eyes but I would take power naps during the day and get two to three hours in that way. I'd also go to the movies early and fall asleep in the theater while no one was there ... so I tried that for a while but I don't drink or smoke so that option didn't exist... but I did try nightquil and it worked and I got 7 hours of sleep I made it a point not to rely on it, but I would use it twice a week sometimes and until I got my rhythm back. now I'm fine I have no issues with sleep but if you're desperate try a cap of nightquil and see if that helps.
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  • Posted

    I take a little bit of ambien (maybe 1-2mg) before bedtime and that helps me to fall asleep quickly.  

    I also started taking cialis a couple of weeks ago and think its starting to help.

    I do take power naps for deep, REM sleep.  They make up for alot of my lost sleep.  

    Still some nights it feels like my bladder is empty, like 2 nights ago, when I slept for 4 1/2 uninterrupted hours, followed by 2 more hours.   

    And other nights like last night where I'm pulled out of a deep sleep every hour or 90 minutes.

    I don't know why some nights are good, others bad, but I'd sure like more of the good nights.

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  • Posted

    try to ride an horse( or a bike if you are not able to riding horses) without sitting down on the saddle  but staying up on the stirrups)   for 20-30 minutes that exercise I'm sure helps internal pelvi and bladder's muscles to being more resistent  you could try without any danger i hope....
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  • Posted

    Some take Merlatonin that supposedly serves a double purose of reducing urination and helping sleep. It did not work for me.
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    • Posted

      That was meant to be MELATONIN. Cherries have melatonin in them and some here were buying a very strong cherry drink that served the same purpose.
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  • Posted

    My problem has always been underactive bladder(UAB) as opposed to overactive bladder(OAB). After having the Rezum performed the urinary retention is steadily decreasing. I'm hoping it doesn't develop into an OAB. When I had heavy retention, abdominal discomfort was continual, this has pretty much been eliminated since the Rezum.
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  • Posted

    Do you have retention? If the problem is incomplete emptying then that has to be addressed one way or another either through drugs, surgery, self cathing, etc.

    If retention isn't the problem, then your nightime urination (nocturia) can have a number of causes and possible solutions including anticholinergic medications, timed diuretics, daytime naps, leg elevation and compression stockings. Personally I found limiting my sodium intake helps. You should also be checked for diabetes and any underlying heart issues. 

    As far as the Nyquil suggestion, not a good idea if you have retention because it can make it worse. Yes, you might sleep through the night, but your bladder will be for the worse. So be careful with all antihistimines and decongestants

    Jim

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    • Posted

      Ah, sodium.  I did have salty foods and chips yesterday.  I'll limit it for awhile and see if it help.  

      Thanks

       

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    • Posted

      See if it works. When you eat salty foods you retain water. But at some point the water must come out. I suppose you could actually time salt intake to help nocturia but that's beyond my pay scale. Probably easier to just cut back -- healthier too -- so that the kidney's don't unload heavy at night. Haven't read anything about it, just some personal thoughts/observations. In like manner, that's where daytime diuretics come in where you time the dieuretics so the kidneys unload more during the day than at night.

      Jim

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  • Posted

    Hi J, I may be missing something here, but have you got BPH or not?

     

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    • Posted

      OK, J, I can only offer my own opinion about my experiences with BPH.

      1st, I took Tamsulosin for years and that kind of altered things in somuchas I went from many visits to the loo down to about 3 pees a night.

      However, I recently started to get the urge to pee and had to be quick getting to the toilet regardless the time of day or night.

      My doctor added Finasteride to my Tamsulosin saying that it should take about 3 months for it to show improvement, because that's how long it takes to effectively shrink the swollen prostate gland. 

      I have now been on this for just over 5 weeks and I'm happy to say that last night was the 1st night in a long time that I didn't get up to pee.

      But I must add that the urge to pee must be dealt with instantly. I am hoping that the combination of Finasteride and Tamsulosin will eventually conquer that problem - I will put it on here if it does.

      I hope that helps.

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    • Posted

      I was on Finasteride and  Tamsulosin for 6 months.  I had alot of discomfort in the area of my prostate but saw no improvement in my nocturia.   Then I was on  Tamsulosin for a few months and my nightly trips decreased from about 7 to about 3.  However I had serious headaches so I switched to 5mg Cialis a few weeks ago.  Cialis gives me mild headaches and seems to be helping my nocturia.

       

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    • Posted

      Assuming you have retention, the Cialis may be helping in that regard with more complete emptying resulting in fewer bathroom trips at night. Have you noticed that your voids are larger since taking daily Cialis? A urine output log would be helpful in nailing things down but it would have had to been started before you started taking the Cialis. What is your PVR? If it's over 300ml, you might consider self cathing (CIC) which would allow you to completely empty your bladder prior to bed time and when you awake at night. It possibly could cut down your night time bathroom trips significantly and possibly even eliminate them. 

      Jim

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    • Posted

      Thanks Jim;  I'm in Argentina and the drs here dont seem to be very quantitative.  I think the health care here is far superior to what I had in Florida but I've been consulting urol and radiologists for a year about my nocturia and have never discussed measuring or cathing (ughhh!).  

      I understand that cathing is only a temporary solution anyway. 

      I started recording the number of nightly sleep interruptions on my own. 

      If I can get to a steady 2x per nite I'll be happy.  If not, I'm going to have a PAE.

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    • Posted

      Well you don't need an "MD" in front of your name to do the math. Let's say your bladder signals you to urinate when it contains 400cc. Well, if your bladder only is emptying 100cc each time, then your kidneys only have to produce another 100cc before you wake up and head to the bathroom. On the other side of the spectrum, if your bladder empties completely, then your kidneys would have to produce four times that much urine (400cc) before you head to the bathroom. That could in of itself mean the difference between four bathroom trips per night versus one, or even none. Daily Cialis can help some in that regard but self cathing would completely empty your bladder. And it's not just a temporary solution, in fact some of us -- myself included -- have been doing it for years. In your case, you might only have to do it once a day, before bedtime. 

      I'm not saying you should start self cathing, but in order to come up with a treatment plan for your nocturia, you first have to find out what causes it. Is it being caused by a large post void residual or something else. Post void residual can be measured via ultrasound at your doctor's office. 

      Unfortunately, too many MDs rush out their go-to treatment plans before really taking the time to figure out what is causing the problem. So sometimes their plan works, sometimes not. And sometimes they use a sludge hammer approach when a light tap with a hammer will suffice.

      Jim

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    • Posted

      Agreeing with JimJames.  Both Jim and I are long-term cathers (Or at least Jim was, until he didn't need to.).  Although my Urolift surgery in Decemeber allowed me to pee again, my bladder is so strethced out, that it can retain as much as 1,000cc before complaining (although usually I get The Urge at around 500cc---still too much!

      So I've cathed intermittantly since Aug of 2014.  And cathing at bedtime gives me a FULL NIGHT OF SLEEP, every night.  A small blessing in a situation that offers slim hope for improvement (on bladder size).  That said, Jim has his happy story of having ignored protocol and then having shrunk his bladder to near-normal size... I too may try his approach!

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    • Posted

      Cartoonman, that's great you get a full night of sleep. In my case, not so often a full night even when I empty my bladder completely before bed time. Other nocturia issues going on, but certainly much better than before I rehabbed my bladder through CIC. 

      But as an update, I still cath sometimes but rarely during the day. Usually it's in the evening after a period of inactivity which seems to make it harder to go naturally. But when I do go naturally, which is 90% of the time, I empty down pretty well, often to 50cc or less, which is probably better than I was doing in my 30's! And to that I do attribute my self cath program. 

      Wouldn't exactly say I "ignored protocol" but just that I got more agressive than some of the protocol's out there which are frankly so badly written, explained and understood that it's a wonder people follow them. Seems like one medical writer copies and pastes from another, using terminology like "bladder capacity" and "amount catherized" interchangeably at times when they really are not. And I doubt if most urologists even take notice or care since not much in self cathing for them. 

      So the ambiguous protocol says increase the frequency of catherization when you cath more than 400cc. Except sometimes it says, increase the frequency of catherization when your bladder holds more than 400cc. And I've seen it written both ways in the same article! 

      The difference of course is that unless you can't urinate naturally at all, your bladder will be holding more than 400cc if you cath 400cc. Here's an example:  You naturally void 300cc and then cath 400cc. So the protocol says continue with the frequency you're on. EXCEPT that the bladder is actually holding 700cc. Too much! Way too much if your goal is to rehab the bladder and get some tone back. 

      So what I tried to do was to limit TOTAL bladder volume under 400cc at all times. Sometimes I tried to keep it under 300cc. 

      Right now I'm not as conscientious about all that because my bladder is doing pretty well on its own. But if I get lazy for a period of time, and feel it getting stretched out, I will throw in a few cath's here and there to give it a rest. And as Cartoonman and others know, after a couple of years of self cathing, it is so so quick and easy that it's like washing your hands.

      Jim

       

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    • Posted

      Jim, thanks for the good advice.  

      I had 2 ultrasounds. 

      On Sept 16, 2014 my residual urine was 40.61ml, more than 10% of the initial volume.   

      On April 1, 2015 it was 40% of the initial volume.

      I have a prominent median lobe which is blocking the flow.

      From what I've read cathing in uncomfortable and only useful on an interim or  short term basis. 

       

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    • Posted

      40.61 ml is practically normal! So what is the problem? Believe it or not, prostate size doesn't necessarily correlate to bph symptons. So bph symptons are you having? What is your IPSS (international prostate sympton score)? Unless a lot more is going on other than 40.61 PVR, doesn't sound like you need to do anything. Not an operation. Not CIC. And btw what you've read about CIC is very wrong. After the initial "break in" period, it's quick and painless and can be useful both short and long term. I've been doing it for more than two years now and it's been very useful both in rehabbing my bladder, keeping my kidneys healthy  and keeping me out of the operating room. Don't take my word for it, read a little bit more and what I am saying will be confirmed. 

      Jim

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    • Posted

      OK. Maybe I read your post wrong. (wish there was an edit button here!). So what is your last measured residual in 2016? And how much did you urinate prior to that? Also, was the residual measured under normal conditions or did they have you drink a ton of water prior to taking the measurments. If the latter, I'd take the measurements with a grain of salt. Out bladders work in the real world and therefore PVR should be measured in the real world, not after blowing up the bladder like a balloon.

      Jim

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    • Posted

      I just tried to post a link to the IPSS questionaire but it probably won't come out of moderation for a day or two. So, if you "google" IPSS, you should come up with the link I tried to post without waiting for it to come out of moderation.
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    • Posted

      I've seen 3 urologists.  The first said that my problem was my bladder neck.  He recommend a turp type procedure.

      The second said it was my median lobe which he wanted to treat with bipolar vaporization.

      The third said it was the median lobe and recommended starting with PAE.  

      I will take your advice and read about cathing.

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    • Posted

      Maybe I missed it in your previous posts, but what exactly is the "problem" you have? Specifically, what is your current PVR? What other symptons are you having? And very important what is your IPSS score which you can find out in about five minutes by googling "IPSS" and taking the test. 

      Again, a big prostate or median lobe is not a problem in and of itself, it's only a problem IF it causes other problems. 

      Jim

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    • Posted

      When I visited my first urologist I was getting up 7-8 times per night, so I maxed out on the IPSS.  

      Often felt sleep deprived during the day, terrible for quality of life. 

      I havent redone the test but lately I'm averaging 3.2 times per night.

      If I can get down to 2 I'll be really happy.  

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    • Posted

      So they/you blew the bladder up like a balloon with water and then computed your PVR? Not very accurate. The reason they blow it up that way is so they can get a good look at the bladder in terms of a general examination. Unfortunately, then then ask you to void and compute a PVR. The PVR they compute is often highly inaccurate because in real life you don't blow your bladder up like a baloon. When I mentioned this to my first urologist -- head or urology at a major teaching hospital -- he said, "yes', that's why he doesn't put much credence in the PVR results during a hospital ultrasound. Again, what you want to do is walk into your urologist's office without forcing fluids, then urinate, and then have him measure your PVR with a bladder scanner that he should have in his office. This will tell you what your PVR is in the real world. To get it even more accurate, have it repeated on another day at another time.

      Jim

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    • Posted

      That wouldn't be a problem for me to do.

      But say I have a pvr midday without loading up on water.

      What would I learn from it?

       

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    • Posted

      So what is your CURRENT IPSS score? And if it is lower than before, what exactly did you do differently to get it lower? Did you take meds for example? For some men, "3.2" times per night is acceptable, for some it isn't. If your only goal is to go from 3.2 to 2x per night there may be other options than surgery. There are drugs such as Flomax and Cialis. There are ways to regulate your fluid intake. There is self cathing. Most doctors are only too happy to operate, but it's YOUR prostate they cutting into, not theirs. It's up to you to make an informed decision by getting all the facts and really thinking it through.

      Jim

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    • Posted

      You would learn what your PVR really is at midday under normal circumstances! If it's high, then you would probably want try to reduce it through fluid management, relaxant drugs or CIC. And probably in that order. If it's not high, then really no problem there. But PVR is only part of the issue with BPH. That's where your current IPSS score comes in which can put all your issues in some sort of perspective, and let you make a more intelligent decision whether to go ahead with a surgery or hold off. 

      Jim

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    • Posted

      The other problem with the hospital's PVR test is that they load you so up with water that your kidneys problem will be unloading big time between the time they do the ultrasound to measure total bladder volume and the time it takes you to go to the bathroom, come back and measure bladder volume again to come up with a PVR. Any urine unloaded by the kidneys during that interval will be computed as PVR when it really isn't. Under normal conditions there may still be some unloading during this time interval but not to the extent when you are all watered up. 

      Jim

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    • Posted

      meant to say "probably" not "problem" in first sentence.
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    • Posted

      Thanks.  I had another great night last night so I'm going to wait awhile to do the IPSS.  Hopefully things will continue to get better.
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    • Posted

      Hi jjj,

      Glad you had a great night. Maybe you misunderstood. The IPSS is simply a form you fill out that helps evaluate your symptons and also put them in perspective, as well as tracking progress. It takes less than five minutes to complete. I will send you a link to the IPSS form in a few minutes via PM. 

      Jim

      Jim

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    • Posted

      I understand but my symptoms are changing (for the better) so the IPSS score wont men much.  Better to wait until they level off.
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