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- Prostate gland is found at the base of the bladder in men, which produces fluid which forms part of the semen and helps carry sperm
- As a man gets older the size of the prostate may get bigger. It can squeeze the urethra (like pinching a straw) and this can upset normal urine flow
Signs & Symptoms
- If a man has a prostate problem the way he passes urine changes slowly. Changes may not be noticeable at first or may occur from time to time. Changes include:
- Difficulty or delay in starting urine flow
- Stopping and starting in the middle of urine flow
- After you feel you have finished, a little more urine dribbles out
- A smaller, weaker urine flow
- Taking longer to urinate than before
- Feeling that you have not quite emptied your bladder
- Getting up more often at night to go to the toilet
- Going to the toilet more often during the day
- Sudden strong urges to urinate
- There are three main prostate problems. You may have any one, or a combination of these:
- Prostate cancer – lumps that become hard and stony. If the cancer is detected early there is a better chance of it being successfully treated.
- Enlarged prostate (Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia) – as men get older the prostate gland may grow bigger and can upset normal urine flow, causing some of the mentioned symptoms
Inflamed prostate (Prostatitis) – prostate becomes sore and swollen. May be treated with antibiotics .
- Prostate enlargement occurs gradually
- The result of hormonal changes associated with ageing, such as the conversion of testosterone to a more potent form called dihydrotestosterone and this causes an overproduction of prostate cells, which in turn causes the prostate to enlarge
- As the prostate enlarges, it obstructs the urethral canal, interfering with urination and the ability to completely empty the bladder
- Consult a doctor if you have any symptoms of prostate problems
- If 50 years of age or older, ask a doctor about having regular prostate checks
- If anyone in your family has had prostate cancer, you should start having regular checks after 40 years of age
- Talk to a pharmacist or doctor about taking medicines that work best for you
- Smoking, alcohol, caffeine and junk food have all been associated with prostate problems. Avoid these, and try a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods (wholegrains, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds)
- For Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)
- Change hormone levels or relax the prostate
- Some medicines need to be taken for some time before symptoms improve
- Certain supplements can relieve the symptoms of BPH. Check with a pharmacist or doctor before trying these.
- Surgery can enlarge the part of the urethra that passes through the prostate; laser therapy may also be used
- For cancer
- Medical treatment will be required to stop the cancer growing or spreading. No supplements should be used for prostate cancer without medical advice
- Surgery will be another treatment option by removing the prostate.
- For cancer
- Saw Palmetto – can help to reduce the size of enlarged prostate and hence improve urination problems.
- Nettle root – reduce obstruction of urinary flow.
- Pygeum – improves urinary symptoms associated with an enlarged prostate.
- Vitamin C – makes urination easier and reduce swelling
- Zinc – zinc deficiency is associated with enlarged prostate;. can help to promote a healthy prostate.
*Consult a pharmacist at Lovy Pharmacy when choosing a supplement for your condition.