Wetting the bed is actually a very common problem among kids. But when they are in school-age, it can be an embarrassing issue for them. According to the Mayo Clinic, 15% of children still wet the bed by age 5, but less than 5 percent of kids do so by ages 8 to 11. Bed-wetting tends to run in families and is more common among boys than girls; experts estimate the ratio as roughly 2 boys to 1 girl.
According to Dr Howard Bennett, a clinical professor of pediatrics at George Washington University Medical Center and author of Waking up Dry: A Guide to Help Children Overcome Bedwetting, the combination of several factors is the usual culprit that leads to bed-wetting. These factors are an increased production of urine during the night, a small bladder capacity, poor arousal from sleep, and constipation.
Most children eventually outgrow this bed-wetting phase, but it does not mean that you cannot help your kids to keep dry through the night. Here are a few tips you can do to solve your kids’ bed-wetting problems:
Do not blame them
Getting angry with your little ones and punishing him for wetting the bed will only add pressure to stay dry and eventually will make the problem worse. The right step is to offer some comfort to them instead. Reassure your child that he is not alone, and that bed-wetting is very normal among his age group. Parents should note that a child’s bed-wetting habit should not be brought up in a way that undermines the child’s confidence; they have to understand the issue not punish or humiliate the child.
Retrain the bladder
Remind your child to take bathroom breaks about every two hours during the day. According to Walid Farhat, a staff urologist at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, retraining the bladder is kind of physiotherapy for bladder. He suggests buying a watch or devices that beeps every two hours to set reminders.
Pay attention to their bowel movement
Constipation can put pressure on the bladder, making it difficult to hold in urine and causing an urge to go. If your kid doesn’t have easy and regular bowel movement, it’s time to talk to the pediatrician to solve his constipation problem.
Get a bed-wetting alarm
The bed-wetting alarm is one of the best solutions for bed-wetting. It’s about 75 percent effective, when used properly and when both parents and child are motivated.
Late-night bathroom breaks
Some mothers suggest that waking a child up a few times each night can help resolve bed-wetting. It will give them the sense of knowing to wake up and go when they had to. You can start by waking them up when you are going to bed, or when you are going to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
Hypnosis has been found to be a very effective form of treatment for bed-wetting. By repeatedly listening to a hypnosis tape, the brain is re-programmed so that the child will be able to respond to a full bladder while asleep the same way he or she does while awake.
If you have tried all of those tips but your child still has bed-wetting problem, it might be the time to see a doctor. Here are some indicators that your attempts to stop your child’s bed-wetting problem have no effect:
- Your child is at least 6 or 7 years old and has never been able to stay dry overnight
- Your child is troubled by wetting the bed, even if the child is younger than 6 years
- Your child was once able to stay dry but has begun bed-wetting again
- You feel frustrated by your child’s bed-wetting problem