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Avatar universal

Anxiety and the Bathroom

I am a college student who suffers from frequent trips to the loo. I feel the urge to pee many times during the day; I've noticed that I feel more urges when I'm outside my dorm than when I'm in it (maybe because it's the 'homey' feeling the place has and the fact that I'm just down the hall from a toilet). (It's also not an infection as I've had numerous tests done and nothing is wrong with my kidneys either.) None of my friends ever have to pee when we're hanging out around town, but I always do. I feel like such a burden to them, especially since we always have to drive to find bathrooms. My doctor suggested retraining my bladder and although this does give me a better sense of security, I still find that I revert back to getting anxious when I'm out with my friends and not around a loo. And now, I also get frequent upset stomachs (stomach pain, gas, bloating, loose stools). I've been tested for celiacs disease and numerous others, but nothing is out of the ordinary. It's not a food allergy either as I've kept track of what I've been eating and have only found random triggers. I think this too is related to me being anxious if I'm not near a bathroom or not able to get to one (such as being in a class where the teacher won't let me go or the fear of other students thinking I'm weird for having to always come and go from the class.) I don't want to eat or drink anything before I go out so I can reduce my chances of having to go to the bathroom. I'm already extremely skinny and because I don't want to eat or drink much I lose weight. These problems are making my life a living hell. I don't know any other college student who suffers from these problems; I seem to be the only person in the world who has to deal with this. I don't even want to go out with my friends anymore, let alone make any new ones (it's also hard for me to make friends since I'm so shy so I'm alone most of the time) for fear of them finding me weird or a burden. I've spent months crying over this, I just can't seem to shake this problems since they always come back when things are finally going good. I feel like everyone else would just be better off without me. I've become extremely sad and I feel like a lost cause.
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Avatar universal
"It's not a food allergy either as I've kept track of what I've been eating and have only found random triggers." You can have mutiple food allergies so single elimination study is not always going to give you the answer. Bladder issues don't cause those gastric problems you note, although the bowel does press on the bladder so that is why lots of time you think you have to go to the bathroom for 1 thing and end up with 2.
It is natural that you get anxious if your bladder does not hold as much as others so you are always on the lookout for a rest stop. I wouldn't call it an irrational anxiety - it is a justified concern but other than the training your doc told you to do nothing can be done about it. Did your doc say anxiety makes your bladder go, or are you thinking that has to be the case?
The fact there is nothing wrong with your bladder other than it makes you go more often than you want is just something you have to work with as your doc said training it. I had that same diagnosis after a test 20 years ago and those were the words the doc told me.
I don't know about your comment that the homey feeling keeps your bladder in check either. You probably sit a lot in your dorm whereas going outside involves walking and perhaps bouncing on a bus or car irritating a mainly full bladder which will make a mainly full bladder want to go. In your case the bladder probably does not completely empty all the time so it needs to go more often.
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Avatar universal
I understand how you feel. My daughter and i both have severe anxiety and we need to know where bathrooms are when we go out. When I'm with friends I feel strange because I always need to use the bathroom and they don't. My daughter just tells her friends she had a bladder the size of a pea and that's how she deals with it.
This can be a symptom of anxiety. There are so many symptoms. Some of us have one a few or many of them.
Can you drink something in between classes before you use the restroom? If you don't you're your going to get dehydrated. Go to the bathroom in between every class.
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