What Causes Weak Urine Stream?

Weak urine flow

Slow urine stream majorly means difficulty getting a urine flow.

Usually, this will occur in older men due to an enlarged prostate. Urinary problems can affect both men and women.

Most of the time, people will be unaware of the problem until it gets severe.

This may also result in a slow urine flow in the morning. Delaying a diagnosis can result in a complete inability to pee. 


Weak Urine Stream in the Morning

Difficulty in urination affects older people in majority cases. This is largely due to benign prostatic hyperplasia.

Weak urine flow

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The male prostate gland is located below the bladder, this is why when it enlarges there are so many issues.

As a person ages, this gland increases in size and narrows the urethra leading to weak urine stream. A urinary tract infection may also be the cause of a weak urine stream.

The bacterium called Escherichia coli is responsible for causing urinary tract infections in both men and women.

Those afflicted will experience the frequent urge to urinate even when the bladder is empty.


What Causes Weak Urine Stream in Men?

There are several reasons men may experience a slow urine stream. They can be hereditary or caused by other health issues.

It is important to visit your physician if you suspect that you are experiencing a weak urine stream. What causes weak urine stream?

Listed below are some possible causes for this.

1. Urinary Tract Infection

This is often caused by bacteria that are not removed by the defense system in the urinary tract of the body.

This bacterium spreads to the bladder, kidneys, and tubes present in the urinary tract. It is one of the most common infections affecting men each year.

Related Reading: Can I Use Amoxicillin for UTI?

2. Diabetes Type 2

People with diabetes will experience problems like an overactive bladder, urge to urinate often and urine retention.

The underlying problem is due to nerve damage, the bladder loses its ability to sense the amount of urine inside it.

The sensation becomes dull and vague and ignored by most people.

3. Vesicoureteral Reflux

This is a condition where the urine flows backward from the bladder into the kidneys. The bladder muscles weaken and are unable to prevent the backflow.

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This results in the bacteria present in urine to reach the kidneys and cause damage. This can be a hereditary condition or may result due to an infection in the urinary tract.

4. Polycystic Kidney Disease

This is a genetic disease in which cysts grow inside the kidneys. These cysts are fluid sacs which increase the size of the kidney.

The condition often results in blood in the urine, urinary tract infections and weak urine stream. In severe cases, a kidney transplant is the only solution.

5. Hydronephrosis

Hydronephrosis causes the kidney to swell in size due to incomplete drainage of urine. This condition often arises after an underlying primary condition.

Obstruction in the urinary tract or a blockage results in hydronephrosis. The blockage causes the urine to build up inside the kidney and damage the tissue there.

You may also not completely empty your bladder which can result in UTIs.

Related Reading: What Causes Urobilinogen in Urine?


What Causes Weak Urine Stream in Women?

Weak urine flow in women

Women may also experience a weak urine stream from a variety of ailments.

Many people believe that only men are afflicted with weak urine stream, but this is not true.

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What causes weak urine stream? Hereditary health risks and preexisting conditions may result in slow urine flow in the morning. A major cause for this is the failure to empty the bladder completely.

If you believe that you are experiencing any of these symptoms it is important to speak to your doctor. Prevention and early diagnosis is the best thing to do with bladder issues.

If you ignore it then it may lead to a more severe health issue and result in more invasive procedures. There are many different tests that your doctor can conduct to help diagnose your issue.

These are usually not invasive, or minimally invasive and require little recovery time. Surgery could be needed in very extreme circumstances with bladder or kidney ailments.

Other causes for a weak urine stream in women are listed below.

  • Urinary tract infections
  • Severe inflammation in genitals
  • Antidepressants like oxybutynin, detrusitol, and certain other medications
  • Due to diabetic neuropathy or injury in the spinal cord
  • Due to depression or anxiety
  • After a harsh delivery
  • Prolapsing of the pelvic organs or narrowing of the urethra
  • When the urethral sphincter muscles do not relax after voiding.
  • Bladder cancer

Treatments for Weak Urine Stream

Speaking to your doctor is the first step in treatment for weak urine flow. They will be able to conduct tests and provide you with a full and correct diagnosis.

There are other things you can do that will help alleviate your weak urine stream that can be done from home.

Listed below are some possible treatment for weak urine flow options.

1. Get Medical Treatment for Weak Flow with Groin Pain

Prostatitis, inflammation of the prostate because of infection, is a cause of weak urine stream.

You usually have pain in your groin or pelvis and possibly chills or a fever.

See your doctor to get checked if you have these symptoms. Prostatitis will be treated with antibiotics if it’s caused by a bacterial infection.

2. Get Treated if it Burns When You Pee

Urinary tract infections are much more common in women than men. UTIs can cause inflammation or swelling that blocks urine flow.

UTIs are treated with antibiotics from your doctor.

3. Treat Your Constipation

If you are constipated, hardened stool can push against your urethra or bladder and black urine from leaving the body.

If you’re unable to urinate or have a weak flow and you’re also constipated, try to alleviate your constipation, then see if you can urinate freely.

Drink extra water, eat prunes, and avoid dairy to try to alleviate constipation. Take an over the counter laxative to loosen or soften stool.

4. Get Examined for Scar Tissue

If you’ve had past surgeries in the area of your lower abdomen, scar tissue may have formed.

Speak with your doctor because scar tissue may be able to be removed with minor surgery. This will allow for more room for urine to flow.

5. Stop Medications that Decrease Urination

Stay away from antihistamines like Benadryl, and decongestants like pseudoephedrine found in many cold medicines. Ingredients in these make it harder to urinate.

6. Manage Your Hydration

If you are experiencing a weak urine stream you may be dehydrated.

Men should drink around thirteen cups of water and other fluids daily.

Women should drink nine cups daily. Drink more if you seat a lot, work out, or live in a hot climate.

7. Take a Diuretic

If you have a preexisting medical condition that makes your body hold onto extra water your doctor may prescribe a diuretic.

This is a medication that increases how much you urinate. Diuretics should only be used for specific conditions, so discuss this with your doctor.

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Sources:

Klingele CJ, Lightner DJ, Fletcher JG, Gebhart JB, Bharucha AE. DYSFUNCTIONAL URINARY VOIDING IN WOMEN WITH FUNCTIONAL DEFECATORY DISORDERS. Neurogastroenterology and motility : the official journal of the European Gastrointestinal Motility Society. 2010;22(10):1094-e284. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2982.2010.01539.x.

Gerber GS, Brendler CB. Evaluation of the urologic patient: history, physical examination, and urinalysis. In: Wein AJ, Kavoussi LR, Partin AW, Peters CA, eds. Campbell-Walsh Urology. 11th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 1.

Landry DW, Bazari H. Approach to the patient with renal disease. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 114.

Dr. Mark Williams, MD

Dr. Mark Williams is a leader in alternative and integrated medicines. He is a medical writer and reviewer at Daily Health Cures. He received his medical degree in 1988. Mark brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Daily Health Cures editorial team. He is a natural health advisor and provides a variety of alternative healing techniques in his practice.