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Is this an urban myth, or is there a known association between lifting legs before going to sleep, and a reduction in the number of bathroom trips during the night? If so, what is the best time and duration for lifting legs? (I'm looking for basic ways to slightly improve sleep quality here).

One article I've read mentions that elevating the legs can decrease nocturia:

Simple solutions for reducing the number of times you have to void at night include restrict fluids in the evening... elevate the legs during the day (helps prevent fluid accumulation)...

  • Did you read this (if so, a link would be great) or just "hear" it? If it's an urban legend, it's not one that I've ever heard, although I can make a case for it. – anongoodnurse Jun 22 '15 at 0:14
  • I've read it in several articles, but none seem very clear on this, thus the question. – Joe Jun 22 '15 at 0:16
  • Would it be possible to link to one of them? That would make your question easier to answer. – anongoodnurse Jun 22 '15 at 0:21
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    Here is one article recommending to "elevate the legs during the day (helps prevent fluid accumulation) " - mylifestages.org/asktheexpert/… – Joe Jun 22 '15 at 3:04
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After a literature search on Pubmed, Google Scholar, and consulting UpToDate, the answer to your question is we do not know.

It appears that there are many expert recommendations (see #1 and #2) in articles that recommend leg elevation but there appears to be no real supporting trials or other literature evidence that leg elevation will help in general with people with nocturia. Also, sometimes the recommendation is specific to whether or not you have leg edema as elevation during the day may reduce the volume in your body at night. The recommendations are likely based on physiology and likely taking into account the low risk of leg elevation.

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