It doesn't even burn.
December 16, 2010 3:20 PM   Subscribe

Why do I feel like peeing every 5 minutes? [obviously TMI]

As soon as I (female, 20) go, the urge to pee begins to build up again until I find myself returning to the bathroom after a mere 5 minutes. Normally, I drink a glass of water per hour so I am used to peeing frequently, but feeling the need to go every 5-10 minutes is not normal and it's starting to unsettle me. What worries me is that when I go, I'll pee as normal but I'll hit a point where even if I do feel like there's a bit more urine to let out, I can't pee anymore.

This began four hours ago. I considered the possibility that it may be a urinary tract infection, but it doesn't hurt when I pee and the urine is clear (not even a hint of yellow). In case it's relevant, the last time I had sex was a week ago and I've been urinating normally until tonight.

The liquids I've had since this began are two cups of cranberry juice and a pint and a half of water. Cranberry juice is a diuretic, but can it really be that strong? Even if whatever this is that's happening doesn't hurt (yet), it's annoying and my roommates will probably start giving me suspicious glances soon if this doesn't let up.
posted by apophenia to Health & Fitness (38 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
It's a classic symptom of diabetes. It sounds like you should see a doctor if it keeps up for more than a couple of days?
posted by hattifattener at 3:23 PM on December 16, 2010


Early symptoms of a UTI, totally. The sudden onset and urge to pee when you can't pee any more is classic. You need to see healthcare practitioner ASAP because when it actually kicks in, it will SUCK.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:26 PM on December 16, 2010 [10 favorites]


In addition to diabetes, this can be a symptom of something pressing on you bladder internally. I had the same thing, and it turned out to be a large (benign) uterine fibroid tumor. I had experienced some frequent urination for a while, but the super frequent sensation came on quite suddenly.
posted by kimdog at 3:27 PM on December 16, 2010


fwiw - i've had a lot of UTIs that didn't hurt, just made me pee a lot. you're also taking in a lot of water so clear pee wouldn't immediately mean that there's no infection.

keep an eye on it, but one over active bladder day is probably just a fluke. if it continues through the night and tomorrow, just go in for a check up.

also: you said you haven't had sex in a week but what about masturbation? i've absolutely irritated things while getting off solo that made peeing strange for days.
posted by nadawi at 3:28 PM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


DarlingBri: Damn. I was afraid you'd say that. It's almost midnight where I am, but I'll go to the clinic first thing in the morning. Should I ignore the urge to pee or go anyway, despite not being able to go?

nadawi: I did masturbate yesterday and on Monday night.
posted by apophenia at 3:43 PM on December 16, 2010


have you taken a shower since this started, taking care to wash your vulva? if it is irritation, this might help that.
posted by nadawi at 3:49 PM on December 16, 2010


I've had some success in the past heading off what felt like an impending UTI by drinking plenty of liquids (water & cranberry juice) and peeing it out as fast as it went through me... flushing my bladder, basically. Might be worth a try since you can't get to the doctor for a few hours anyway.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 3:55 PM on December 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


have you taken a shower since this started, taking care to wash your vulva? if it is irritation, this might help that.

Also a very warm wet washcloth wrung out and used as a compress can be very soothing.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 3:57 PM on December 16, 2010


Sounds like a UTI to me too. A fairly harmless regimen until you can get to the clinic tomorrow and get the doctor's diagnosis, is to drink lots of water, as well as *unsweetened* cranberry juice if available. If you aren't against it, you can also take some tylenol or advil, since for me the next symptom after frequent peeing is lots of pain and a raging fever.
posted by MissSquare at 3:58 PM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


nadawi: Yes, I have showered. In this case, I think the problem may be more internal than external.

Serene Empress Dork: Do you mean natural cranberry juice? We only have the sugary Ocean Spray stuff and I've read in past AskMeFi questions that the sugar only aggravates things.
posted by apophenia at 3:59 PM on December 16, 2010


This also happens to me when I've eaten foods that have both high sodium content and some preservative, don't know which one, but they seem to use it in processed meats.
posted by mareli at 4:01 PM on December 16, 2010


Sometimes when I've retained fluid during previous days (due to e.g. my period, eating a lot of junk food, flying, etc), I then go through a 12-24 hour period where I pee ALL THE FREAKING TIME. Like seriously three times an hour. And then it stops and everything's normal again. (I know this is about fluid retention because my weight jumps up by about a kilogram overnight, sits on that weight for three or four days, and then I lose it all again on the mega-pee day).

I'm guessing you'll get pretty clear signs of whether it's that or a UTI within the next day or two, and then you can see a doctor or not.
posted by lollusc at 4:02 PM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


So if this a UTI, how much time do I have before it feels like I'm pissing shards of glass?
posted by apophenia at 4:04 PM on December 16, 2010


Sounds like a UTI to me too, but it could also be just irritation. There are two things I usually like to do before heading to a doctor for antibiotics. Both are treatments/preventative measures:

• Get yourself to a Target or a Walmart or local drug store and look for something called Peridium/Uristat, which is basically an anti-inflammatory drug that's specifically for bladder problems. If it IS just inflammation, Uristat will soothe the desire to pee all the time, and help your body stop straining and re-irritating itself so it can heal.
• Drink lots of water and unsweetened cranberry juice. The real stuff is hardcore; chase it down with something sweet if super sour flavors make you cringe. If what you have IS a real UTI, the cranberry juice will be amazing because it will help both your bladder wall and your overall bladder pH so that bacteria can't adhere or survive.

Chances are your doctor will know exactly what's up because he or she will culture your pee and that'll narrow down whether or not it's a real UTI, so I'd recommend getting the Uristat so you at least can stop camping out in the bathroom for a while 'til you see your GP.
posted by patronuscharms at 4:14 PM on December 16, 2010


Serene Empress Dork: Do you mean natural cranberry juice? We only have the sugary Ocean Spray stuff and I've read in past AskMeFi questions that the sugar only aggravates things.

I've heard that too, but I'm sure I probably drank the Ocean Spray sugary kind back in the day. I'd probably go ahead and drink some of the juice but maybe more of the water.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 4:18 PM on December 16, 2010


patronus, I'm an American in the UK, but I'll see if they have those here, too. I'm living with a nurse and I am digging through her box of assorted medications as we speak. Thanks.

Any advice on getting some sleep when the urge to purge won't let up?
posted by apophenia at 4:22 PM on December 16, 2010


the reason to go with *unsweetened* cranberry juice is because the "normal" cranberry juice is actually made of like pear juice and grape juice etc. the unsweetened stuff is just pure 100% cranberry. And yes, do that.
posted by rebent at 4:32 PM on December 16, 2010


Definitely get a full gyn workup anyway if you can; I had this happen (including wetting the floor once FTW) - lazy doctors treated me for a UTI that they admitted I didn't show evidence of (uh, what?) and a year later, it turned out to be a cyst pressing against everything, including my bladder.

The intermittent nature of the "urges" turned out to be because the cyst would grow and shrink every month with my cycle.
posted by lesli212 at 4:35 PM on December 16, 2010


The best way to get to sleep amidst the constant-urge-to-pee feeling is to take a bunch of ibuprofen or other pain reliever. It really does help reduce the discomfort.

Also, I'll reiterate the suggestion made earlier to chug lots and lots and lots (and LOTS) of water as a means of bladder-flushing. Do this and then as soon as you have to pee, go, and then chug more water. I find that if I do a few rounds of chugging and peeing, it gives me a few hours of relief for sleeping.
posted by joan_holloway at 4:37 PM on December 16, 2010


you can also get cranberry extract capsules, and I find they help taken with a lot of water - all the benefits of cranberry, none of the sugar or forcing yourself to drink really sour juice
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 4:41 PM on December 16, 2010


And like that, I have begun to pee blood. It is very likely a UTI. There is no ibuprofen. I will cry through the night before heading off to the hospital in the morning.
posted by apophenia at 5:11 PM on December 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've had some success in the past heading off what felt like an impending UTI by drinking plenty of liquids (water & cranberry juice) and peeing it out as fast as it went through me... flushing my bladder, basically.

Still do this. It really helps, no matter what stage.
posted by oneirodynia at 5:19 PM on December 16, 2010


If you're peeing blood you may want to see a doctor sooner rather than later. I have had several UTIs and have never peed blood.
posted by Lobster Garden at 5:22 PM on December 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Do you not have access to emergency care where you are? Because if I saw blood in my pee I'd be off to the ER like a shot.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 5:22 PM on December 16, 2010


You need to go to the doctor RIGHT NOW. Blood in your urine with a UTI indicates pyelonephritis. That is very serious. Don't wait until the morning. You do not want to lose your kidneys because of this, and I'm not trying to be an alarmist, but that could happen.

You're reading text from someone who waited and was very sorry, so I'm not just being a crazy internet person here. Please, go to the hospital now.
posted by k8lin at 5:37 PM on December 16, 2010


Counterpoint to the last few OMG ER NOW!!! comments: I often pee blood when I get UTIs but I always wait until the student health center is open (sometimes over a weekend!) instead of making an expensive ER visit and it hasn't killed me yet.

Something to keep in mind if an ER visit would be financially crippling to you.
posted by Jacqueline at 5:40 PM on December 16, 2010


It's not gushing blood. My urine looks like pink lemonade.
posted by apophenia at 5:41 PM on December 16, 2010


It doesn't matter if you're gushing. Blood in the urine is blood in the urine. You've probably had trace amounts of blood in your urine for awhile now and are just able to see it because it's gotten that bad.

If you're not predisposed to kidney loss, it's obviously your call, but were I you, I'd be on my way to the ER right now.
posted by k8lin at 5:47 PM on December 16, 2010


Oh please get to the ER, please. I have on several occasions gotten to the peeing blood stage, and you need antibiotics ASAP and they will give you that lovely peridum stuff that makes the pain go away like magic.
If you don't go to the ER tonight, please at least go to the drugstore and find the peridum (the label will warn you that it will make your urine a bright orange, make sure you get the right stuff) because when it gets to this stage the pain can come on FAST and it really is just complete fucking agony. You will not be able to sleep and you'll just end up in the ER at 3am.
posted by 8dot3 at 6:05 PM on December 16, 2010



You need to go to the doctor RIGHT NOW. Blood in your urine with a UTI indicates pyelonephritis. That is very serious. Don't wait until the morning. You do not want to lose your kidneys because of this, and I'm not trying to be an alarmist, but that could happen.


I cannot second this enough. Now that I've had pyelonephritis I've been warned that I'm now predisposed to developing it whenever I get a UTI. So even if you don't lose a kidney, you can still set yourself up for trouble down the line. I would go now.

Hope you feel better soon.
posted by corey flood at 6:06 PM on December 16, 2010


Aww, pink lemonade pee?! Get thee to a doctor, and feel better ASAP! :( :( I've been in this situation (predisposed to UTIs) and I am just wincing in sympathy pain. Let us know when you're doing better!
posted by patronuscharms at 6:09 PM on December 16, 2010


Seconding the see-a-doctor, but I just wanted to raise another possibilty. I have been in the same situation before and it turned out that I was passing fragments of a kidney stone I didn't know I had. Drugstores sell UTI tests that might help you find an answer before you see the doctor.
posted by heatvision at 8:15 PM on December 16, 2010


Before we man the panic stations, I would just like to say: peeing blood is obviously bad. Peeing pink-tinged blood, however, is typical presentation of a UTI for many women. Were it me, I'd drink water, drink unsweetened cranberry juice, alternate ibuprofen and acetmenophen for pain relief, and in the absence of any other symptoms, wait to see a healthcare practitioner in the morning.
posted by DarlingBri at 11:39 PM on December 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Peeing pink-tinged urine, I mean.

My kingdom for a 30-second edit window...
posted by DarlingBri at 6:56 AM on December 17, 2010


Blood in your urine with a UTI indicates pyelonephritis.

No, it doesn't.
posted by gramcracker at 7:36 AM on December 17, 2010


Just wanted to chime in (a bit late) to agree with DarlingBri and gramcracker - the pink urine does not necessarily mean any more than a UTI. I get UTIs somewhat frequently, and mine go from nothing to visible blood in a matter of hours, every time.
posted by thejanna at 8:52 AM on December 17, 2010


THat is a severe UTI that could go into your kidneys. I had it. Good luck
posted by stormpooper at 10:29 AM on December 17, 2010


While I believe all of you when you say that UTIs are dead serious, I have to report that the day after this happened, it just stopped and hasn't occurred since.
posted by apophenia at 2:26 PM on January 20, 2011


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