how many times do you pee at night?

The other day at kickboxing, we got on the subject of nighttime peeing and I learned that some people sleep the whole night without getting up once. I was flabbergasted. A whole night without a single trip to the bathroom? I can’t even begin to imagine!

I get up to pee at least two times a night, but some nights it’s three or four. (Last night I only made a bathroom run at 1:30, but that was because I was dehydrated and had taken a tylenol pm that knocked me out. The night before, I got up three times: 11:30pm, 1:00am, and 4:45am.) 

Is this a perimenopause thing? I wonder. A female-who-gave-birth thing? An age thing? A strictly Jennifer thing? Why is it that some people can go all night and others can’t?

My brother says nighttime bathroom trips are a sign of sleep apnea, but I rarely snore and I’m not sleepy during the day so I don’t think that’s the problem. I simply wake up and then, because it’s hard for me to fall back asleep when I have even the slightest bladder twinge, I always run to the bathroom. If I don’t go pee when I wake up, then I’m afraid I’ll fall asleep only to be awakened shortly with a pressing need to pee, thus interrupting my already too-interrupted sleep. It’s a vicious cycle.

To keep my bathroom runs to a reasonable minimum, I try not to drink much after 8pm, which is hard because I get wicked thirsty around suppertime, mostly because I don’t drink much during the day because I’m not thirsty. Probably, I should set a “drink water” alarm for 4pm and then knock back a quart or two. . . but do I? No.

The other solution? Potato chips. The salt soaks up all the water in my body and then I don’t pee as much. 

Or at least that’s what I tell myself at 9:30 at night when I get a case of the munchies.

This same time, years previous: three days of birthday, the quotidian (9.28.20), evening feeding, the soirée of 2016, getting shod, pointless and chatty, 37, peposo.


  • Mac

    Cannabis tincture or gummies (legal in va) helps people get through the night without getting up to pee. I’m not talking about getting stoned: just a small amount. And mannose powder has stopped me from having a uti in years.

  • Margo

    They are full-spectrum CBD specifically for sleep and the company is FOCL. I actually take just a half a gummy before bed and it works great for me. I don’t struggle at all with going to sleep, just with staying asleep the whole night. These gummies helped immensely. Timed-release melatonin did not.

  • Margaret W High

    I drink a lot of water (to help avoid UTIs as someone mentioned above) and I pee a lot. I now have a personal policy of peeing just before I leave the house to go anywhere because otherwise I can get uncomfortable and stuck and not a bathroom in sight. I give you that context to say that about few nights, I wake up to pee once. Surprising, given my daytime habits and super hydration! I have started taking FOCL full-spectrum sleep gummies maybe 2 months ago and they have improved my sleep dramatically. I used to wake up every night with crazy brain worrying about things (and take the opportunity to pee) and now I NEVER do. Even when I wake up to pee, I am calm and drowsy and there’s no doom spiral, so I go back to sleep. It’s AMAZING.

    What I know about perimenopause is that our sleep is easily interrupted for various reasons, so it’s hard to get a good night’s sleep. My guess is that your brain/body has to be gently convinced to stay asleep and keep the bladder til morning (just like we tried to convince our babies at a certain age that they were old enough/fed enough to stay asleep and not seek us out in the middle of the night when they had a wakeful moment)

  • Jeanie

    A pelvic PT told me that a bladder can be like a two year old in its insistence on having to pee. She told me to talk back to it and I found it works for the times when I am debating about whether to get up and pee.

  • Jenny in Austin

    I am 51, perimenopause. I usually wake up a couple/few times a night and pee at least once. I am pleasantly surprised when I am able to sleep through to 5:30 am. Our 14 year old dog also tends to wake us up in the wee hours to go out. So when she pees, I usually do too.

  • Kim from Philadelphia

    Most nights I sleep through, without a bathroom run.

    My stats:
    Big water drinker, but I cut it off 2 hours before bed
    I try to eat a lower sodium diet, but I’m not obsessed about it

    My suggestion would be to really hydrate earlier in the day.
    Keep the chips; life is short and we must enjoy it ☺️

  • Elva

    I have never had kids, and I am older than you, but I usually do not need to pee at night and never more than once unless I eat a LOT of yogurt just before bed. Yogurt, for some weird reason, really causes me to have to pee!

  • Katherine

    I occasionally per during the night, but not nearly always. If I wake up, I often go back to sleep without peeing (but, now I wonder if my subsequent sleep would be better if I did pee…).

    My husband wakes up at least once a night & pees, and I think often more. It’s clearly not menopause for him, but he is older than me (52 vs 45), so maybe it’s an age thing. Unlike you, he is always tired during the day, so it may be a sleep disturbance thing.

  • Marie

    You Must! You Must! You Must get up to pee! Even when you do not want to. UTIs are not fun and that’s what you’ll get if you don’t get up to pee!!

  • ccr in MA

    Minimum once, usually twice. Like you, if I wake up for another reason (the cat, usually), I’ll go to the bathroom then, even if the need isn’t pressing, to give me more time to sleep before I have to go again. I’ve never had kids, so that isn’t my issue. It could be an age thing, for sure.

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