Enlarged Prostate Symptoms
In all likelihood, you don’t want to spend much time thinking about your prostate. But if you are having problems urinating, your prostate might be what’s keeping you up at night. Benign prostate enlargement or hypertrophy/hyperplasia (also known as BPH) is a common condition in men as they age. Prostate tissue can enlarge in response to certain hormones. It can swell and block the flow of urine from the bladder, causing uncomfortable symptoms and potentially infection. BPH is a benign (noncancerous) enlargement of the prostate that blocks the flow of urine through the urethra. The prostate cells gradually multiply, creating an enlargement that puts pressure on the urethra — the “chute” through which urine and semen exit the body.
- Difficulty Starting Urination
Urinary hesitancy can slowly become a problem over time with BPH. An enlarged prostate can press against the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder. Subsequently, it becomes increasingly more difficult to begin urination. It can take longer to build sufficient pressure for urine to pass this restriction.
- Red Light Green Light
Starting and stopping urination can be a frustrating symptom of BPH. The enlarged prostate can press on the urethra, preventing urine from easily flowing out of the bladder. Even if the urine stream starts, the flow can be interrupted frequently. You may try to force out more urine by straining surrounding muscles.
- Weak Urine Stream
It might take a very long time to empty your bladder when you have BPH because of a weak urinary stream. You may find yourself spending a very long time standing in front of the urinal. If the urethra is partially blocked due to pressure from the prostate, only a small flow of urine can escape the bladder, resulting in weak urine flow and a long, long wait for empty.
- Sleep Disturbance
As you get older, it may get harder to fall asleep and stay asleep. It doesn’t make it any easier if one of the things waking you up is the need to urinate several times a night. Nocturia is a condition that can cause you to wake up two or more times a night to urinate. Pressure from the enlarged prostate and obstruction of the urethra can lead to irritation of the bladder and problems with proper nerve signaling. This can result in frequently waking up and feeling like you have to urinate, when there’s actually very little liquid that you need to void.