Man awake in bed (Dario Lo Presti | Getty Images)

The answer really depends mostly on how old you are.

“When you’re young, it’s normal to get up zero to one times a night,” says Tobias S. Kohler, MD, MPH, a urologist and associate professor at Southern Illinois University school of medicine. “But as you age, it’s not uncommon to find yourself getting up to go to the bathroom more often.”

Several things could be going on that make you need to pee frequently. “The kidneys lose their ability to concentrate urine so rather than being able to hold it 6 to 8 hours, you’ll have the urge to eliminate sooner,” explains Tobias.

Plus, around age 50, most men start to experience some degree of enlargement of the prostate. That puts pressure on the urethra and in turn the bladder becomes more sensitive—so a smaller amount of urine will trigger the urge to go.

Chances are, it’s a benign (albeit, annoying) condition. But if frequent urination is becoming disruptive, it’s worth seeing your doctor for a prostate exam and to rule out any other possible causes.

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