How to help your child stop wetting the bed

For Your Health

Bedwetting is a problem that can be embarrassing for many kids, and frustrating for their parents. However, it is an issue that is treatable.

It can be especially frustrating to children who wet the bed.

But there are reasons why it happens.

“Some kids are more sound sleepers,” said Dr. Liza Aguiar, a pediatric urologist at Hasbro Children’s Hospital. “It can be due to slightly smaller bladder capacity or the inability to respond to those signals during the night.”

Stress can also play a role.

“Starting school, for example, parents getting divorced, can trigger bedwetting,” said Aguiar.

Generally, she said, it’s a good idea to seek treatment if your child continues to wet the bed by the time they’re seven.

There are short term solutions, including medications that can mask the problem.

“Some kids choose to take a medication on an as-needed basis. For example, for sleepovers or for overnight camps,” said Aguiar.

If a child is motivated, there’s a more permanent solution.

“There are bedwetting alarms which are inconvenient, but really, our primary way of getting to the root of the problem is to condition the brain to wake up at the time of peeing at night. and that takes a lot of participation from the patient’s standpoint, as well as from the parent’s standpoint,” said Aguiar, adding aht there are also times when they have to screen for more serious conditions,

Taking a bedwetting assessment can help you determine if your child needs professional help or if it may be more serious.

“It does go away on its own most of the time,” said Aguiar. “The majority of times, I tell parents it’s perfectly reasonable to watch and wait. I often tell my parents, ‘I’ve never sent a bedwetter to college.’”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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