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What do nighttime trips to the bathroom mean?

Do you visit the bathroom two or more times a night? Here's something to consider: a checkup.

Nighttime trips can increase with age -- and quite often it's nothing to worry about. But a new study suggests it may be best to rule out any potential underlying problems. In the study, extra nighttime trips were linked to possible health issues.

In the study, men and women age 70 and older who got up twice or more a night to urinate had a higher mortality rate in the coming three years compared with the people who visited the latrine just once nightly. And the researchers suspect that, for some, frequent urination could be a sign of an underlying health issue that needs to be addressed, like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, sleep apnea or other sleep disorders, kidney problems or urinary tract infections. The good news? All of these problems are treatable.

Frequent nighttime trips to the bathroom could -- and probably do -- mean nothing for the majority of folks. So don't panic if this sounds at all familiar. Just be sure to bring it up at your yearly doctor exam.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.