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© Anchor Health Inc 2017  *  All Rights Reserved

    Ph. (224)458-1224   

Anchor Health Physical Therapy 

155 Revere Drive Suite #5, Northbrook, IL 60062

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Fax (224)458-1252

Nocturia

What is Nocturia?

Nocturia is the need to wake up at night to urinate. This tends to increase in frequency as people age, and it can ruin your night sleep. Under normal conditions, a person should be able to sleep a full six to eight hours without getting up to use the bathroom. Waking up once is considered normal. A person with nocturia wakes at least twice throughout the night.

Research shows that when you get up in the middle of the night you actually lose one hour of sleep, because it takes that long for your body to reach the restorative deep sleep level again. Nocturia is a serious problem because your body needs good night sleep to restore. 

What are the common of causes of Nocturia?

Some of the most common causes of Nocturia include:

  • drinking lots of liquid before bed 

  • caffeine

  • alcohol

  • overactive bladder

  • diuretic medications

  • obesity — extra weight can put pressure on the bladder, causing a need to urinate before the bladder is full

  • older age — bladder muscles can weaken over time, leading to a decrease in the bladder’s capacity to store urine

  • pregnancy — the fetus can put pressure on the bladder during pregnancy

  • noisy environment - you can awaken because of the noisy environment of your home and decide to go to the bathroom since you are awake

  • swollen legs - fluid redistribution in lying position can cause excessive fluid flow to the bladder

How long should I wait before I seek treatment for Nocturia?

Regardless of the cause of Nocturia, the sooner you start therapy the better. Research has shown that the brain works best for compensation, or recovery, in the first few months after a dysfunction occurs. This time period is optimal for pelvic rehabilitation to promote the best chance for recovery. 

How can physical therapy help resolve symptoms of Nocturia?

Your physical therapist will perform an examination to identify the causes of your urinary Frequency and/or Urgency. Your therapist also will determine whether you should be referred to a physician for additional tests.  Based on the evaluation results, your physical therapist will individualize treatments to strengthen your pelvic-floor muscles and improve their function.

Your physical therapist can help you:

  • Gain control over your symptoms.

  • Reduce the need for pads and special undergarments, incontinence medications, and possibly surgery.

Your physical therapist will:

  • Show you how to "find" the right muscles and use them correctly.

  • Use pelvic-floor exercises to help you strengthen your muscles so that you can better control your bladder. 

  • Instruct you in exercises to stretch and strengthen other important muscles, so that they can support proper bladder function.

Your physical therapist can provide information about:

  • Diet and nutrition to avoid food and drinks that may irritate the bladder.

  • Changing behaviors that make symptoms worse.

  • Ways to decrease urinary urge and frequency.

Depending on your symptoms and level of discomfort, your physical therapist may use biofeedback to make you aware of how your pelvic-floor muscles work and how you can control them better. Electrodes attached vaginally or rectally will provide measurements of muscle activity and display them on a monitor, and the therapist will work with you to help you understand and change those readings. The therapist also may use electrical stimulation to improve your awareness of your muscles and increase muscle strength.

Remember: Knowledge Is Power!

What are my therapy sessions going to be like?

Your physical therapist will perform a detailed examination to identify the causes of your bladder dysfunction symptoms. Your therapist also will determine whether you should be referred to a physician for additional tests.  Based on the evaluation results, your physical therapist will individualize treatments to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles and improve their function. In addition, general exercise is often prescribed to improve overall physical health and well-being. 

Depending on your symptoms and level of discomfort, your physical therapist may use biofeedback to make you aware of how your pelvic-floor muscles work and how you can control them better. Electrodes attached vaginally or rectally will provide measurements of muscle activity and display them on a monitor, and the therapist will work with you to help you understand and change those readings. The therapist also may use electrical stimulation to improve your awareness of your muscles and increase muscle strength.

How soon can I expect to see improvements?

Each patient is unique, so this time frame can vary greatly. Research shows that depending on the severity of your condition, it takes from 2 weeks to a few months of treatment to improve symptoms of nocturia. We most often request a frequency of 2-3 times a week for 12 total visits. That is why our office staff will ask you to schedule all 12 of your sessions before starting therapy. If you need more than 12 sessions, your therapist will discuss this with you after you have completed 12 visits and you will decide together whether continuing with therapy would benefit you or not. If so, your therapist will reevaluate you and send a progress note to your physician requesting an extension.

What are the credentials of my uro-gynecologycal physical therapist?

Uro-gynecological physical therapists have been trained in internal vaginal and rectal evaluation and treatment techniques and are by our state license legally allowed and qualified to perform these procedures.

All licensed physical therapists have had to apply and be selected to attend Physical Therapy school. It is a very competitive process and only those will the highest grades and best potential are selected. Doctors of physical therapy have invested a minimum of 7 years into their undergraduate and graduate training at universities. Once they graduate, they have to sit for a State Board Exam and pass to receive their license to practice. In order to keep their license active, they must dedicate a certain number of hours to continuing education each year.

At Anchor Physical Therapy we also require that therapists attend multiple post-graduate continuing education courses every year to stay up to date with latest research and continuously enhance their treatment skills in order to achieve the best possible treatment outcomes for our patients.