How much dribbling after urination is normal?
Dribbling is normal in both men and women. However, this can also be an indication of a disorder of the urinary tract.
When you should have your symptoms checked out by a doctor.
Men are particularly affected by this form of incontinence. However, very few of them investigate the causes. Dribbling can also be an indication of a disorder of the urinary tract, such as an enlarged prostate. An expert explains when dribbling is a warning signal.
Dribbling after urination – what is normal?
If the main jet dries up and the bladder muscles tense up again, some urine usually trickles out. That’s not unusual. It is usually the last drop out of the urethra. However, if it doesn’t stop at a short, light dribble, but if the amount increases, you should pay attention.
Especially if urine is suddenly leaked unintentionally or if the stream of urine becomes weaker in general. These symptoms indicate that the normal process of voiding urine is disturbed. A common cause in women is urinary incontinence, also known as bladder weakness. In men, a benign prostate enlargement is often behind the “dribble afterwards”.
Other possible causes of increased dribbling can be:
Urinary tract infections: If, for example, the bladder is inflamed, urinating is painful and it is more difficult to empty the bladder due to the cramped bladder muscles. Often only a few drops come.
Chronic prostatitis: It can cause the prostate to swell and the enlarged organ to narrow the urethra.
Prostate cancer: Enlarging tumors can narrow/squeeze the urethra.
Bladder stones: They also present an obstruction that can prevent the bladder from emptying.
Bladder cancer: Enlarging tumors can block the transition to the urethra.
Narrowing of the urethra: It can occur, among other things, after wearing a catheter for a long time or as a result of an operation (scarring).
Taking certain medications: Some medications, such as certain sedatives, antidepressants, and antipsychotics, can affect bladder function.
In case of increased dribbling, see a doctor
“If there is more dribbling, that’s a warning signal,” says Matthias Zeisberger, first chairman of Incontinence Self-Help e Urge to urinate. Then those affected should always consult a doctor and have the cause clarified.”
For women and men, the general practitioner is often the first point of contact. If a disease in the area of the urinary tract is suspected, this will refer you to a urologist. Because: The urologist is not just a “men’s doctor”. He not only deals with the male sexual organs, but also with changes and diseases of the kidneys and urinary tract in both sexes.
Dribbling in women: bladder weakness is often the cause
As already mentioned, urinary incontinence is a common cause of increased dribbling and involuntary urine leakage in women. The reasons why women are more prone to bladder weakness than men include anatomical conditions, more elastic and generally weaker connective tissue, pregnancy and childbirth, and hormonal influences, such as during menopause. Obesity, constant constipation and chronic cough are also among the risk factors that can promote bladder weakness. Pelvic floor exercises can help strengthen the pelvic floor and alleviate the symptoms of bladder weakness.
“Pelvic floor training should be learned under the professional guidance of a trained physiotherapist. Training is the be-all and end-all in the treatment of mild stress incontinence. The exercises train the support function of the holding apparatus and strengthen the function of the bladder sphincter,” explains Zeisberger. “Drugs that calm overexcited nerves can often help with urge incontinence.”
Benign prostate enlargement in men: why it often dribbles
From the age of 50, the prostate enlarges in many men. The cause is the influence of the sex hormone testosterone. Above a certain size, the prostate gland constricts the urethra that it encloses. Urine drains worse. The result is problems with urination.
According to the German Society for Urology (DGU), around 40 percent of men over the age of 50 in Germany suffer from urinary problems that require treatment. A good quarter of them have an enlarged prostate.
A weakening urinary stream is one of the first symptoms of a benign prostate enlargement (benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). It also takes longer for the bladder to empty. It also often takes some time for the bladder to start emptying (“starting difficulties”).
“Dribbling, a feeling of residual urine and an increased urge to urinate and incontinence are other symptoms of an enlarged prostate,” explains Zeisberger. “Men should always have problems with urination examined by a doctor. In the case of a benign prostate enlargement, there are various treatment methods, including taking medication and various surgical procedures.”
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