Bedwetting (otherwise known as nocturnal enuresis) – one of those parenting taboos and so infrequently discussed in the playground! Yet it is very common. Did you know that one in ten 7 year olds wet the bed? That’s 3 children per primary school class. Most children will grow out of it in their own time. Here are some top tips to help encourage this along…
1..Make sure your child drinks plenty of water during the day – this helps stretch the bladder, increasing how much it can hold.
2. Encourage your child do a ‘double wee’ before bed (otherwise known as double voiding) – they go to the toilet, then do something else – brush teeth, story etc… and then go back for another wee.
3. Make sure your child is having a poo regularly and isn’t constipated – a full bowel means less capacity for the bladder to hold urine
4. If your child does wet the bed overnight, encourage them to help with changing pyjamas, bed sheets etc – using a reward system, such as a star chart to reward them for helping as well as for being dry can help motivate
5. The ERIC website (www.eric.org.uk) is a source of practical help and support – it contains resources to help both you and your child
If your child is still regularly wetting the bed aged 7 years, your GP can refer him or her to an ‘enuresis’ clinic – your child may benefit from some medication or an alarm system at this stage to help
If your child has had a period of time when they have been dry at night and then suddenly starts wetting again, it is important that you ask your Doctor to see them – there are some medical conditions that can cause this and it is important to rule these out.
Overall, try not to stress too much about it – most children grow out of this in their own time. In the meantime, wishing you all sweet dreams and a good night’s rest!