Dealing with life's little accidents ...
Dealing with bed wetting can be difficult for both children and parents. More often than not there is no medical cause for bed wetting – but don’t despair, there are ways to manage bed wetting and also many bed wetting treatments.
While there is no cure for bed wetting, there are many simple and effective ways to help stop it, as well as several bed wetting treatments to be used following a medical diagnosis (in the case of Secondary Nocturnal Enuresis)
Five steps to help stop bed wetting
Start by creating a bedtime plan that organises your child’s nightly routine.
- Make sure your child goes to the bathroom before they go to bed.
- Cut out excessive fluids before bed time – also good to avoid any fizzy and caffeinated drinks.
- Just before you go to bed, wake your child and encourage they use the bathroom. Make sure they are completely awake and can recognise their baldder is full on their own.
- Use an alarm system that rings/makes noise when the bed gets wet. A bed wetting alarm system operates by detecting moisture in your children’s bed. Considered highly effective and also has a good success rate. On the downside, they wreak havoc with sleeping patterns, for the child who has the “loud wake-up call” and the parents – well, you may miss out on some beauty sleep.
- Retention control training – training the child’s bladder so that they can hold urine longer. This method gets the child to delay urination during the day by ever-lengthening periods. It’s advisable to check with a doctor before commencing this method.
Managing bed wetting
Although there is no cure or definite preventative measures against bed wetting, life can be made easier with a few simple comforts and emergency “spares”.
- Keep a spare pair of clean PJs close by for a quick and fuss free change.
- Keep clean sheets handy for any emergency.
- Keep a night light on so your child can easily make it to the bathroom.
- Reward your child for having a dry night
- Use DryNites pyjama pants
Various treatments are available for bed wetting – parents are advised to see a physician for the recommended approach and treatments.
Treatments usually include:
- Behavioural conditioning devices
- Medications should behavioural interventions be unsuccessful.
In some cases children wet the bed in response to emotional problems. If you notice your child showing symptoms of:
- Changes in eating and sleeping habits
It might be necessary for parents to seek advice from a child or adolescent psychiatrist. It is their job to evaluate any physical and/or emotional problems that may be causing the bed wetting and resolve them.
Early supportive intervention can help minimise potential emotional impact that bed wetting could inflict upon your child.
Who can help?
The following health professionals can evaluate and treat bed wetting:
- Family doctor
- Nurse practitioner
- Physician assistant
The following specialist(s) may be required if your child has medical or emotional conditions:
- Developmental paediatrician
Household must haves
- Mattress protector – helps keep mattress dry. Also quite affordable.
- Read your child a story on bed wetting.
- Sleeping bags with waterproof sleeping bag liner – perfect for sleepovers – cheap and easily available
- Bed wetting pyjama pants like DryNites