How to Make Yourself Pee: Effective Ways that are Based on Research

How to Make Yourself Pee

Making yourself pee is usually necessary if you have to give a urine sample for a urinalysis. Usually, drinking plenty of water is enough to make yourself urinate when you need to. However, if you suffer from a shy bladder you many find that you can’t pee “on command” especially if others are waiting to use the bathroom. Difficulty peeing can also be caused by an underlying medical condition like a bladder infection, prostate problems, or even constipation.

Most people don’t have any problems in making themselves pee regularly. Drinking plenty of fluids is usually the best way to make sure that you can pee when you need to. Also, some foods like cucumbers, carrots, and watermelons act as natural diuretics and can make it easier to use the bathroom. If you still find peeing difficult and you can’t pee when you need to, follow the simple tips below.

How to Make Yourself Pee: 10 Simple Ways to Help You Pee Faster

If you need to make yourself pee, there are a few practical steps you can take to make urinating easier. At the end of the article, you will find advice on how to resolve some medical issues that can interfere with urination and when you should see a doctor.

The National Institutes of Health recommends the following to help you to urinate and empty your bladder completely:19

1. Bend forward while sitting on the toilet

Bend forward while sitting on the toilet to help you pee. You may also use your forearm to push on the lower abdomen while leaning forward. But don’t put direct pressure on your bladder as this may cause back-flow to your kidneys.

2. Tap the area between your navel and pubic bone

Using your fingertips, briskly tap the area between your navel and pubic bone or genital area. Repeat this tapping about once each second for up to 30 seconds to encourage yourself to pee.

3. Run the tap water

Run water in the nearby sink or flush the toilet as this can also help you to pee. Some people say that this can make them pee in 30 seconds.

Scientists are not sure why hearing running water makes us need to pee but it seems to create a conditioned response. Running water sound has a similar sound of urination, so just hearing running water can help you pee quickly.

4. Run warm water over the genital area

The warm water will gently message the genital area and help you to relax and encourage you to pee.

5. Place your hands in a pan of warm water while sitting on the toilet

The sensation of water will stimulate your bladder to burst open.

6. Drink while trying to urinate

This is one of the tips suggested by the National Institutes of Health to help you to urinate and empty your bladder completely.

7. Walk and exercise to help you pee

Moderate physical activity, like walking, can help to stimulate your bladder. Go outside for a few minutes walk, take deep breaths and try to relax.

8. Play audiotapes of water sounds to make it easier for you to pee

If you cannot run the tap water then the best alternative is to listen to water sounds.

9. Stroke your inner thigh to stimulate urination

Sit on the toilet, close your eyes, breathe deeply and stroke your inner thigh.

10. Use a simple relaxation technique

Relaxation can help you pee in public toilets. Close your eyes, breathe deeply. Make a conscious effort to relax muscles starting with your fingers, then move the relaxation to other parts of the body.

Other Natural Ways to Help You Pee Faster

Drink more water

The most obvious way to make yourself pee is to drink plenty of water. In general, you should drink plenty of fluids regularly throughout the day to prevent the symptoms of dehydration. One way you can check if you are drinking enough water is to check the color of your urine.

So, if you know that you have to pee for a urine test, make sure and drink enough water an hour or so before your appointment.

Try certain foods

Certain foods have diuretic properties that can make it easier for you to pee and get rid of urine from your body. Here are some of the best foods to help you pee when you need to:

Watermelons. There are plenty of reasons to eat watermelons for great health. Watermelons contain a large amount of water and they also help to cleanse your kidneys, colon and flush out your liver naturally.

Among the health benefits of watermelons, the journal Ancient Science of Life reported that for centuries watermelons have been used in Ayurveda medicine as a diuretic so eating them can help you pee.10

Cucumbers. Another food that has a high water content and can make it easier to pee is cucumbers. Eating fresh cucumbers is a great way to naturally flush out your lymphatic system and stimulate urination.

The Journal of Young Pharmacists says that cucumber seeds are both cooling and have a diuretic effect on the liver.11  

Carrots. Another healthy food to eat to make it easier to urinate is carrots. Carrots are a natural source of antioxidants and can help rid the body of free radicals. However, according to the Journal of Food and Science Technology, carrots have diuretic properties that can help rid the body of uric acid.12  

Citrus fruits. The juice from lemons, limes, and oranges can stimulate urination due to their diuretic effect on the bladder. Dr. John P. Cunha on says that citrus fruits irritate the bladder and can help you urinate more frequently.13

Herbs to make you pee more

You can also take some herbs that can make it easier for you to pee more frequently. Some herbs that have diuretic properties are:

ParsleyParsley is a known natural diuretic. It helps the body get rid of excess water and salts by improving kidney function and taking more water from the blood. Clinical trials have shown that consuming more parsley has a diuretic effect, helping you to pass more urine frequently.14

A study published in 2002 in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, provided substantial evidence for the use of parsley as a powerful diuretic. The study was done on rats. Rats that were offered parsley seed extract to drink produced significantly more urine over a period of 24 hours compared to when they were drinking only water.14

Ginger. There are many health benefits to consuming more ginger in your diet and helping you pee is just one of them. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic report that ginger can also help lose weight because it helps reduce fluid retention and increases urination.15

Cilantro. Another herb with natural diuretic properties is cilantro (or coriander). A biomedical library lists coriander as an herb with diuretic, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic properties.16  

Therapy for a shy bladder

Of course, even if you have an urgent desire to use the bathroom, you may find it difficult to pee if you have a shy bladder.

To treat a shy bladder and help make yourself pee, doctors usually recommend a course of cognitive behavioral therapy. The course of therapy helps people with a shy or bashful bladder to be exposed to fearful situations and lessen the brain’s anxiety response.

For example, the British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies published a case report on a person with paruresis (shy bladder). According to the report, this person was treated with cognitive behavioral therapy to treat his shy bladder syndrome.17  

Other ways of treating a shy bladder and help you overcome the anxiety associated with urinating are drugs, hypnotherapy, and paradoxical intention (worrying on purpose).18

The National Institutes of Health recommends the following relaxation technique to make yourself pee:

Close your eyes, breathe deeply. Make a conscious effort to relax muscles starting with your fingers, then move the relaxation to other parts of the body. Do this until you are completely relaxed to help you pee.

Treat the underlying cause to make yourself pee

If a medical condition means that you are unable to pee when you need to, you have to treat the underlying cause. In the case of a bladder infection or bladder obstruction, you should visit your doctor for an examination.

If you need to pee but you can’t because you have constipation, you can try some natural ways to alleviate constipation. Some of the best natural laxatives are prunes or dried figs. You can also consume castor oil as a natural laxative, and take probiotics for your digestive health.

If you have a urinary tract infection, you should always see a doctor. However, at the early stages, you may treat this successfully at home. Please read my article on natural ways to treat a bladder infection for some practical advice.

Is it Possible to Make Yourself Pee in 30 Seconds or Less?

Yes. It is possible to make yourself pee fast by following the suggestions above. For example, you can breathe deeply and leave the tap running. The slow breathing will help you relax and the sound of running water will make you need to pee.

Why Would You Want to Make Yourself Pee?

Although peeing comes naturally for most people, there are some situations when you need to make yourself urinate.

Urine test

The most common reason to make yourself pee is if you have a doctor’s appointment for a urine test. The best way to make sure that you can urinate when you need to is to drink a few glasses of water beforehand.

However, the length of time it takes for water to fill your bladder is dependent on a few factors. For example, water is absorbed into people’s body at different rates. Also, during hot weather, more fluids will be lost through sweating.

It’s good to remember not to drink so much water that you have to use the bathroom before you need to for the urine test.

Shy bladder

You may need to make yourself pee if you have a shy bladder and it’s difficult to use the bathroom in public places. Many people have a shy bladder (the medical term is paruresis) making it difficult to pee in the presence of other people or if other people are nearby.

Dr. William Blahd on WebMD says that difficulty peeing is not a medical condition but connected with an anxiety disorder. Feeling nervous can make the muscles that control the urge to urinate freeze up and stop working.1

Dr. Blahd explains that a shy or bashful bladder can impact on your daily activities. Not being able to make yourself pee can cause you to avoid social events, impact on your work life, and even prevent you from going on dates.

Enlarged prostrate

An enlarged prostate (benign prostate hyperplasia, or BHP) may be one reason why you need to make yourself pee. Although prostrate problems generally cause you to urinate more frequently, it can also cause difficulty urinating and increase the sensation that you have to pee.

Urologist Dr. Charles E. Jennings says that an enlarged prostate can make it difficult to start urinating when you need to go. You may also feel that you have to strain to urinate or that your bladder isn’t completely emptied when you have finished urinating.2

The journal Cognitive and Behavioral Practice reports that BHP can also cause you to have a shy bladder.3

Urinary tract infection

In some instances, a bladder infection can actually make it more difficult to pee. Although infections in your urinary tract often cause frequent urination, Dr. Cecile Unger from the Cleveland Clinic says that if your bladder isn’t functioning properly you may find it difficult to urinate.4

In fact, according to doctors from the Mayo Clinic, one sign of a bladder infection is a frequent need to pee but very little urine comes out. You may also experience a burning sensation when you pee, foul smell from your pee, pelvic pain, or foamy urine.5

Sometimes, a bladder infection can be caused by a bladder obstruction, which is another reason that it can be difficult to use the bathroom.

Bladder obstruction

If something obstructs the base of your bladder, you may have difficulty peeing. In these cases, you may not be able to make yourself pee and you will need to see a doctor who can relieve the blockage.

Common reasons for a bladder obstruction that interferes with your ability to urinate are bladder stones, enlarged prostate, or bladder cancer. Dr. Jennifer Sobol from the Michigan Institute of Urology says that the bladder obstruction can make it difficult to start urinating, cause abdominal pain, and being unable to urinate.6

Neurological disease

Damage to the nerves connected to your bladder could cause you to retain urine and have difficulty peeing.

The journal American Family Physician says that possible reasons for urine retention caused by nerve damage are strokes, diabetes, shingles, herniated disk, or multiple sclerosis.7

In cases of neurological diseases that cause difficulty in peeing, your doctor will advise of the best interventions to help you urinate.


Certain medications can interfere with your ability to pass urine effectively. Some antidepressants and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can affect the muscles that control your bladder.

For example, the journal Clinical Neuropharmacology says that the antidepressants duloxetine and olanzapine can cause urine retention.8 Depression in itself doesn’t affect your ability to urinate but not being able to pee is a side effect of some antidepressants. So, if you are being treated for depression, you may find that you have to make yourself pee.

The journal American Family Physician reported on a study that men using NSAIDs were more likely to have difficulty urinating than those not using these drugs.7


Constipation can be a reason for not being able to empty your bladder at all or only partially. According to Dr. Colin Tidy on, hardened stool in your colon can obstruct your bladder and make it difficult to pee properly.9

When to See a Doctor

The inability to urinate can cause complications in your urinary tract and cause a bladder infection. Doctors from recommend seeking medical help if you have an urge to pee, are unable to and you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Complete inability to urinate
  • Painful, urgent need to pee but then having little success
  • Urine that comes out in dribbles
  • Feeling the need to pee after you have finished peeing

Also, if you have any signs of a bladder infection like cloudy pee with a foul odor, blood in your urine, or a burning sensation when using the bathroom, you should visit your doctor promptly.

Read my other related articles:

Medical Sources:

  1. WebMD. Can’t go in public? you might have a shy bladder.
  2. WebMD. Enlarged prostrate: a complex problem.
  3. Cog Beh Prac. 2003; 10(2):168-177.
  4. Health ClevelandClinic. Your bladder and your health.
  5. MayoClinic. Urinary tract infection.
  6. MedlinePlus. Bladder outlet obstruction.
  7. Am Fam Physician. 2008 Mar 1;77(5):643-650.
  8. Clin Neuropharmacol. 2008 Sep-Oct;31(5):307-9.
  9. Patient. Urinary retention.
  10. Anc Sci Life. 2014 Oct-Dec; 34(2): 103–108.
  11. J Young Pharm. 2010 Oct-Dec; 2(4): 365–368.
  12. J Food Sci Technol. 2012 Feb; 49(1): 22–32.
  13. Medscape. Frequent urination.
  14. J Ethnopharmacol. 2002 Mar;79(3):353-7.
  15. MayoClinic. Natural diuretics reduce water retention.
  16. UnitPorj. Medical use of spices.
  17. Behav Cogn Psychother. 45 (1), 79-84. 2016 Jul 21.
  18. UrologyHealth. Shy bladder syndrome.
  19. National Institutes of Health

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