Mood problems and frequent urination
February 28, 2017 4:59 AM   Subscribe

YANMD. I have to pee all the time lately, and a medical dr visit found nothing. This has coincided with a hypomanic episode, full of anxiety. My pdoc doesn't know of a connection. Googling "mania" and "urination" yielded things I cannot un-see. Has anybody experienced an overlap in some form of mania and having to pee all the time?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Are you taking lithium? It can increase the amount you need to drink (and thus pee). Are you overloading on liquids at all as a result of the hypomania? Drinking compulsively, drinking more [soda/coffe/alcohol/water] than usual?
posted by terretu at 5:07 AM on February 28, 2017

I don't have mania but I do have to pee all the time when I'm having anxiety attacks. It's become like a joke. Before I give a presentation I try to drink less water and still have to scoot to the bathroom right beforehand (and right after). I've gotten better at realizing these are more nerves than actual signals from my body (it's the type of things CBT can help with). One aspect of panic attacks, which I do not have but have heard reported from friends, is the concern that you'll NEED to find a bathroom and be unable to. It's a not unusual linkage anxiety and bathroom stuff.
posted by jessamyn at 5:37 AM on February 28, 2017 [9 favorites]

I have to pee more when I'm anxious. I don't experience mania, but I do experience anxiety and have been diagnosed with anxiety disorder.

I speculate that anxious peeing is related to the fight-or-flight reaction that is part of anxiety. A friend actually pointed this out: most animals pee when they're fleeing or threatened, so it makes sense that an anxious person or a person feeling threatened would suddenly feel the urge to pee. I don't know how scientific that is, but it makes sense to me.

By all means, get your sugars checked and make a note of it if you have other bladder-related symptoms. But it's probably just a weird side-effect of anxiety.
posted by blnkfrnk at 5:39 AM on February 28, 2017 [3 favorites]

I have the same thing happening. I've gone to multiple doctors, and they can't find anything wrong. They all ended up telling me "it's all in your head."

It often takes several hours for the urge to go away, and in that time, I go anywhere from 3 to 15 times.
posted by Four-Eyed Girl at 5:41 AM on February 28, 2017

The combination of anxiety and frequent urination can be associated with thyroid problems (eg Graves Disease). Have you had your thyroid checked?
posted by Secret Sparrow at 6:00 AM on February 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

Have you kept a hydration diary? It's easy to overlook that you're drinking more when you're anxious and thus urinating more. Tracking it may help explain your current predicament.
posted by ghostpony at 6:33 AM on February 28, 2017

Following on from Jessamyn's answer, you may find the phrase "nervous bladder" useful while googling. It's super common and can be anxiety-related, and there are both medications and techniques for addressing it (and there are doctors and nurse practitioners who specialize in its treatment). It may not fully apply in your case, but there may be enough overlap to be useful in your research.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:49 AM on February 28, 2017

When I'm having an anxiety attack, I evacuate everything for a few hours. Last time it happened was election night and I peed like every half an hour for the entire night, despite not having consumed any fluids. I wound up losing about 5 pounds over a couple days just from lost water weight.
posted by soren_lorensen at 7:02 AM on February 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

I don't have biopolar, but I have serious GAD, and man, I have to pee a lot more when I am anxious. It's ridiculous. I convinced myself I had some kind of horrible bladder tumor or something, but the urologist said there was nothing physically wrong with me. My guess is it's the anxiety. My doctor said I could see a specialist to work on techniques to reduce my issues, but honestly just knowing it was the anxiety made it a lot better.

Secret Sparrow's suggestion about getting your thyroid checked is great--it will either give you a confirmation of a health issue that you can get treatment for, or alleviate your anxiety about having a serious health concern.
posted by radioamy at 8:18 AM on February 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

Nthing thyroid. Did the doctor even do bloodwork on you? My mom ultimately died from a "it's all in your head" diagnosis (actually, it was all in her lungs, stage 4 cancer. Thanks doc) so I'm extra sensitive about doctors who do nothing. If this doc didn't even try to pursue an answer for you, please change docs.
posted by vignettist at 9:00 AM on February 28, 2017

When I'm having a panic/anxiety attack yeah, not sure about mania.
posted by Young Kullervo at 9:14 AM on February 28, 2017

Yes, and as it happens, it's coinciding with a need for me to start taking Synthroid again for low thyroid function. :(
posted by Hermione Granger at 9:40 AM on February 28, 2017

Nth that frequent peeing comes along with anxiety for me, to the point that I used to try to use it as a visualization exercise: "The anxiety is just flowing out of your body..."
posted by fairlynearlyready at 6:29 PM on February 28, 2017 [1 favorite]

Can't speak to the hypomania, but my sister is type 1 diabetic and frequent urination was a big sign. Have you lost weight?
posted by jessca84 at 9:50 PM on February 28, 2017

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