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Mom (95), alert but weak on her feet, urinates 10-12 per night.

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My mother's visiting nurse suggested Valerian tea for sleep.
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Odd this behavior is only at night.
My mother has a chronic UTI and suffers from dementia.
Generally if an infection is the cause of these frequent trips you can tell by the odor of the urine but ....
My mother also used frequent bathroom trips as an excuse to poke around the house at night.She isn't sleepy and likes the feeling that she isn't being watched.
Lately I've noticed that she likes this time alone in the bathroom to have a peaceful "sitdown" and move her bowels without me waiting outside the door.
Obviously I have to be somewhere closeby in case she needs help but now I don't let her know I'm on to her secret.
Certainly your mom needs to see the doc about whether or not she has a UTI or chronis UTI but you might also consider she needs a bit of privacy for bowel movement.
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Is she waking up because she really has to go or is it to reassure herself that you will get up with her if she really needs you? My Mom has an ileostomy and she couldn't help that we had to get up constantly to empty her bag. Then found she could use a urostomy bag which held well through the night. But she would wake me up anyway because she said she needed help. After 7 months of this I was exhausted because I had to do all the running during the day, etc. Plus my Mom slept all throughout the day. When I realized it was more of a want than a need from her, I started acting like I didn't hear her. I know this sounds awful but I have an arterial bulge and get horrific headaches without proper rest. So she started taking Benadryl and started sleeping through the night. My Aunt is with her now, and she is doing my Aunt the same way. I don't know the particulars on your mother's illness and hope I am not offending in any way because that's not my intent. Just a thought.
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Another good night last night. Let's keep our fingers crossed it continued
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I don't know how it works, I just know that it does work.
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Thank you all for your feedback. We went to an orthopedic surgeon three days ago as she was having bad back pain. She had another compression fracture. One of the meds she was put on was low dose to start (100mg) Gabapentin. The last two nights she has slept straight through the night. We changed her to an all night diaper. We're keeping our fingers crossed that it continues. The best thing is she's not hung over like with other sleep meds or pain meds.
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Saw palmetto can be very effective for the sensation of frequent need to empty the bladder in men. (It takes a few weeks to start working.) It was very helpful for my husband, on the advice of his physician.

But for Mom? Really? It works on the prostate gland. Don't see how that could help women any.

I echo the advice not to use OTC herbs or meds without consulting a doctor.
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There can be issues with OTC meds like benedryl but also with prescription meds in elderly. Unless she needs your help every time, you get meds for you! I take melatonin or ambien so I can get my sleep. (My symptoms are worse with less sleep making daytime care giving an issue.) Talk to your dr. I can still get up and help if needed but sleep a bit deeper and don't hear her first thing.

Make the pathway unobstructed. Move furniture if need be. install railings/grab bars as needed. Get rid of rugs in bathroom. Put night lights in bathroom. You can get a bed rail that installs on any regular bed. The one we got actually can pivot to help person stand (almost like a walker). Make sure there is enough light in bedroom so there is not confusion on waking about where person is.

One thing that helped was making sure daytime naps were limited in number and time. No caffeine in drinks makes problem worse.

Check for UTI can be a hidden problem and can increase or cause symptoms of mental confusion in elderly.
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I hate to put a damper on things, but I wouldn't try any OTC drugs or herbs unless I had talked to the doctor. At this age, they may do more harm than good. Please call your doctor if you haven't already.

Also, I see it's been four days, would you please give us an update as to what happened?

Thank you!

I like GEO's opinion, i.e., telling her it's okay to go in her (I hate to say diapers) but that's what they are. Also, please make sure she doesn't have a UTI.
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It looks like it's been answered before. Did these just start? I'm thinking UTI, too. Please get it checked because UTI's are painful. She may not like to 'wet' her depends.

I might add how sad for both of you, she for having her sleep interrupted and having that urge to urinate and you for having to get up with her.
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For Dad and Mom, try saw palmetto. It works. Again - bedside toilet is wonderful. Watch out for the Swiss Miss no sugar it probably has Aspartame. It could cause neuropathy.
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Dad is the same. Then started waking thinking it was daytime in middle of night. Already on generic flomax. He uses self stick pads inside of pull up depends so he can change them himself. He does this more now after getting redness on his penis. MD started Mirazapam (generic for remeron). She chose this for its limited interference with blood pressure and other meds. He seems to wake less. I also try to stop liquids at 7, he starts his bed time routine at 9. I think he has the urge to pee because he has prostate cancer, and the tumor is pretty large now. (he is 93 with a weak heart).

It does sound like your mom may have a urinary track infection (UTI) and only the meds from the MD cure that. After UTI is not a concern, give her a glass of non sugar cranberry juice every single day to prevent bacteria regrowth. Also make sure she is not having caffeine too late in the day. It is a diuretic and one cup can last 8 hours before clearing the system. Dad has accepted hot coco (Swiss Miss no sugar).

Good luck. I know what years of interrupted sleep can do to you.
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a UTI sounds very likely. I have a potty chair right by my mother's bed which seems to work quite well. It's easier to empty a potty chair than to get up so much at night.
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First, stop all liquids after about 5 p.m. She will have time to urinate before going to bed. Walmart sells a pad with three layers that urine will not go through and you can wash it. I bought one for one of our dogs since she leaks sometime. (Yes, I know the dogs are not supposed to sleep with us). If she can tolerate it, Oxytrol sold at Walmart over-the-counter will prevent having to urinate quite as frequently. I tried one pill, it worked with the stoppage of urine, however, I got a migraine (a side effect), but for about $14 it is worth a try. It is a patch worn on the abdomen, so it is not pill form. There are other meds a doctor can prescribe, but the simplest way to curtail nocturia is limiting liquids 4 to 5 hours prior to bedtime. Let us hear what happens...
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As a side note, my mother used to go to the bathroom more than she needed to because she thought she had to go. She was confused about the feelings. However, she does actually need to go several times a night. She went to the incontinence clinic and they said that is normal for her age of 86 but they did give tips like the one someone else gave about not drinking anything for four hours before going to bed.

The incontinence clinic checked her for UTIs and such, too, but the overall issue is that my mother needed someone to really talk this all out, with. She does wear depends but mostly she changed her habits and also talking it all out helped her understand that she doesn't need to keep getting up - she was worried about wetting the bed and she really doesn't need to worry about that.
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Definitely this issue should be addressed by her doctor.

If it cannot be resolved, I suggest getting in-home help at night, or considering placement in a care center. You cannot be a safe, effective caregiver if you don't get sufficient sleep!
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My godmother was waking a few times a night to go to the bathroom. I talked to our doctor who put her on medication that has helped. I give it to her in the PM, and now she is only getting up once and sometimes not at all. Unfortunately, she has early dementia, so she is still waking me up with her yelling and talking out loud.

My advise is to talk to her doctor and see if there is any medication he can give her. Until then, I use depends and also the overnight pads if she does have an accident, plus I have a pad on her bed.
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There is a fair chance your mother has a bladder or urinary tract infection. Check it out.
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PS I would not go with the catheter Pam as she is still alert and it would probably distress her too much and possibly lead to bladder spasms and she would still wake up and fuss. They are very useful in end of life care when the patient becomes too weak to get up out of bed and can understand the need or is semi conscious.
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She is already wearing depends so I would be inclined to either try some benadryl or ask the Dr for something, she might respond to melatonin too but not at the same time. be careful to use low dose of what ever if anything you use in case of falls. The elderly are far more sensitive to drugs. For some reason 70 seems to be the cut off age and I agree with that because i personally need lower dose of common OTCs.
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Frequent trips tonight, that is for sure! Three times now in the last 15 minutes. Sometimes I think the brain gets stuck with this urge just like everything else tends to! LOL!
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Thank you all. I think her sleep pattern is off do she wakes up frequently and then thinks she needs to go. I'll talk with her doc. I wonder if any sleep med would help. I was thinking Doxepin. I wonder if anybody had experience with that. She does wear depends but still wants to the bathroom. Exhausting
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Depends or a catheter. Your pick.
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We also have the problem with frequent trips to the bathroom during the night and had frequent UTI's. My Mom was referred to a urogynecologist for testing and treatment. They took pictures of the inside of her bladder, it was very inflamed. Also did an input/output study for her bladder to see if she was emptying. The doc put her on a prophylactic antibiotic, methenamine (for the inflamation) and toviaz for the overactive bladder. Toviaz did not work that well for her so doc switched to Mybetriq about a month ago which seems to be working much better for her. She hasn't had a UTI this year.

See if you have a urogynecologist in your area and you should have Mom checked for a UTI as well. Could be the reason for the frequent bathroom trips or not completely emptying the bladder.
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Would it be possible to limit liquids up to 4 hours prior to her going to bed for the night? See if that will help.

Companies make night-time pads that she can wear but I bet she would still attempt to wake you up to help her as one wouldn't like the idea of peeing in one's bed, especially since she is still quite alert.

Have her see her doctor or if your Mom has a urologist, as there are pills that help eliminate that constant feeling like you have to go right now.
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Use Depends.
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