You may be surprised to learn that colder temperatures can lead to increased urinary symptoms and certain urinary conditions. If you find yourself making more trips to the bathroom than usual, you aren’t alone. In the winter, urinary symptoms can get worse for a few different reasons.
Cold diuresis is the body’s way of preserving heat when it experiences cold temperatures. As temperatures drop, your body starts to constrict its blood vessels to keep your internal organs warm and reduce the flow of blood to the skin. This causes your blood pressure to rise since the same amount of blood is still being pumped throughout your body in a much smaller space than before. Your kidneys work to eliminate excess fluid and reduce blood pressure, causing you to pee more. Keep in mind that if you don’t stay hydrated, your kidneys won’t be able to properly do their job and filter out waste. This can lead to a urinary tract infection, so be sure to drink an ample amount of water.
Another reason you may experience increased symptoms or certain urinary conditions in the winter months is because we simply don’t sweat as often as we usually do when it’s cold outside. Since the body isn’t losing that fluid through sweat, it has to come out somewhere. You guessed it—urination.
If you have an overactive bladder, you may also notice that your OAB symptoms are worse in the winter months. That’s because chilly weather leads to a lower body temperature and makes all of our muscles tighten up. Pelvic floor muscles around the bladder can tense, stimulating it and causing bladder spasms that trigger urination.
If you’re experiencing bladder problems in the winter, there’s nothing to be embarrassed about. In many cases, it’s completely normal to urinate a little more often than usual during this time of year. However, if you experience symptoms that affect your day-to-day life, cause you to lose sleep due to waking up to urinate frequently, or you experience urinary incontinence, don’t skip your trip to the doctor. Treatment options are available to help you put a freeze on urgency and wetting accidents.
At Arkansas Urology, we’re here for you. Our patients’ health has been and will always be our top priority! Do you need to schedule an appointment? Contact us today or book your appointment online. We look forward to seeing you soon.