An Overview of BPH and What You Can Do About It

It’s a normal part of the aging process: the prostate gland starts to grow in size. However, for some men, this growth becomes problematic and can cause urinary symptoms, known as BPH or benign prostatic hyperplasia. BPH affects over 50% of men over the age of 50 and 90% of men over the age of 80. In this blog post, we’ll explore what BPH is, what causes it, and what you can do about it.

What is BPH?

BPH is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland. As the prostate gets bigger, it can constrict the urethra, causing urinary symptoms. These symptoms include difficulty starting urination, weak urine stream, frequent urge to urinate, and the need to urinate at night. BPH can also lead to bladder issues such as urinary tract infections, bladder stones, and incontinence

What causes BPH?

The exact cause of BPH is unknown, but age and hormonal changes are the most likely culprits. As men age, their levels of testosterone decrease, and estrogen levels increase. This hormonal shift can cause the prostate to grow. Genetics may also play a role in the development of BPH.

What can you do about BPH?

The good news is that there are many effective treatments available for BPH. For mild cases, lifestyle changes such as limiting caffeine and alcohol intake, and avoiding drinking fluids before bedtime can help reduce symptoms. Pelvic floor exercises and bladder retraining can also be beneficial. Medications such as alpha-blockers and 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors can be prescribed to relax the muscles in the prostate or reduce its size. In more severe cases, surgery may be required.

When should you seek medical attention?

If you experience any urinary symptoms, it’s important to speak with your doctor. They can perform a physical exam and run tests to determine the cause of your symptoms. In some cases, BPH may be mistaken for prostate cancer, so it’s important to get a proper diagnosis.

Conclusion

BPH is a common condition that affects many men as they age. While the symptoms can be bothersome, there are many effective treatments available. Whether through lifestyle changes, medications, or surgery, there is a solution to help improve your quality of life. Don’t hesitate to speak with your doctor if you’re experiencing any urinary symptoms

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