Almost 50 per cent of men over 50 experience an prostate problems and although it's not always a sign of something serious, it's important that you and your partner know what to look out for. GP Dr Roger Henderson looks at some of your most common questions on prostate enlargement, known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) and how to tackle it.
What are the symptoms I should watch out for?
One of the most common signs that there might be a problem with your partner's prostate is if you notice him getting up to go to the loo more often than usual in the middle of the night.
He may also need to go to the toilet more urgently or never feel that his bladder is empty even after he has passed water. Straining or being hesitant to go are also signs that something might not be quite right.
What can I do to help?
The best thing to do is to talk to your partner and encourage him to visit his GP. Prostate problems can be a sensitive topic. He might feel embarrassed to talk about so it's a good idea to try and find out a bit of information about the condition yourself to help him open up about his symptoms and put his mind at ease. NHS Choices or the A.Vogel Enlarged Prostate Health Hub has lots of useful information you can read up on as well as handy symptom checker.
An enlarged prostate is very treatable, both with prescription medicines and herbal remedies, so it's important for your partner to see his GP so he can discuss his options.
My other half is reluctant to go to the doctors, what can I do?
Try to talk to your partner about why he doesn't want to go. If he is reluctant because he thinks it's just a natural part of ageing he can do nothing about, try to explain how treatable the condition is and that he doesn't have to just put up with the problem.
If he's worried that it might be something more serious, encourage him to tackle this head on and seek help. Prostate cancer is thankfully much more rare than BPH and the only way to find out is to go and see your doctor.
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