Tracking your urinary voiding (or urination) can tell your doctor important information about your health.

Urinary voiding is the process of removing urine from your body. When your bladder and urinary tract are functioning correctly, the amount and frequency of voiding are largely based on the amount of liquid you drink.

When there are health conditions that affect your bladder and urinary tract, including heart, nerve, and kidney conditions, this isn’t always the case. People with these health conditions can void too often, too much, too little, or without control.

A urinary voiding log can help doctors diagnose the underlying cause of the voiding problem so that treatment can begin. Keep reading to learn more about healthy urinary voiding.

Are “voiding” and “urination” the same thing?

Yes. The words “voiding,” and “urination,” mean the same thing.

  • Voiding is a medical term you’ll hear when talking with doctors and healthcare professionals.
  • Urination is a term that’s most often used in everyday and casual conversations.

However, they both refer to the act of emptying the bladder.

Was this helpful?

The standards for urinary voiding are based on the amount of liquid you take in. Healthy people generally void an amount that’s about equal to the amount they drink.

As a rule, the bladder can hold between 350 and 550 cubic centimeters (CCs) of liquid. (550 CCs is just over half a liter or two cups of liquid.) At around 150 to 250 CCs, most people begin to feel the need to urinate. This typically happens every four to 5 hours.

As people age, the bladder can shrink. Bladder capacity is normally about 250 CCs to 300 CCs in seniors. It’s common for people to need to void every three to 4 hours once this happens.

A urinary voiding trial measures the amount of urine you output against the amount of liquid you take in. Doctors use this information to help diagnose conditions such as urinary retention or an overactive bladder.

For instance, if the total amount of urine you void during your trial is significantly less than the amount of liquid you consumed, it’s likely a sign that you have a condition that’s causing you to retain fluid. This can include problems with your heart, lungs, or kidneys.

Your doctor might ask you to fill out a urinary voiding log to help them get a better picture of your urinary health. A urinary voiding log allows you to track what, and how much, your drink and how much you void, over the course of several days.

It can help to have home medical supplies on hand before you start, such as a urinary collection pan to use inside your toilet. You can find this supply at most drugstores, grocery stores, medical supply stores, or online sites like Amazon.

If your doctor didn’t give you a log to fill out, you can use online options to track your voiding on your own. For example, this free urinary voiding log from the American Urology Association is available to everyone.

There are multiple types of urinary voiding problems.

Voiding problems happen when the urinary tract, bladder, or other major organs aren’t functioning correctly. This can result in the body holding onto too much water, or in the walls of the pelvic floor overacting during voiding.

Sometimes, other conditions, such as nerve problems, bladder stones, and tumors, can also cause urinary voiding problems.

Symptoms of voiding problems include:

When to seek medical attention

Treatment of urinary voiding problems requires a medical diagnosis. It’s a good idea to seek medical care if you’ve had any symptoms of urinary voiding problems for longer than a week or two.

Sometimes, urinary voiding problems can resolve quickly and without treatment, but it’s best to find out if there is an underlying cause.

You might need treatment such as pelvic floor exercises, medication, nerve stimulation therapy, injections to relax pelvic muscle, or surgery.

Was this helpful?

Urinary voiding is the output of urine your body produces. Healthy people output urine that is about equal to the liquid they take in.

Some health conditions, including bladder, urinary tract, heart, kidney, lung, and nerve conditions can affect your urinary output. They can cause you to not void enough urine, to void too frequently, to have the urge to void too often, or to lose control of your bladder.

A urinary log can help you measure the amount of liquid you take in and the amount of urine you void. Your doctor can use this log to help diagnose the underlying condition causing your urinary voiding problem. Once you have a diagnosis, you can begin treatment.