Bed wetting (nocturnal enuresis)
- Bed wetting
- Treating bed wetting
- Living with bed wetting
Urinary structure and function
|The urinary system is divided into upper and lower sections. The function of the urinary system is to remove waste products from the body, regulate water and salt balance, and to store and transport urine.|
For more information, see Urinary Tract.
|Bed wetting, or nocturnal enuresis, is defined as intermittent episodes of wetting the bed while asleep in children who are over 5 years of age.|
For more information, see Bed Wetting (Nocturnal Enuresis).
Treating bed wetting
There are several options available for treatment of bed wetting. The use of a bed wetting alarm is generally the first step for families who are motivated and have time to dedicate to using an alarm.
For more information, see Alarm for bed wetting.
Desmopressin is generally considered to be the next step for children who have not responded to alarm therapy, who are not likely to comply with alarm therapy or where a rapid result is required.
Causes of bedwetting
Causes of bedwetting- difficulty rousing from sleep
Causes of bedwetting- overactive or twitchy bladder
|An overactive bladder is one which gets twitchy when it holds a small amount of urine, and contract spontaneously to release urine before the bladder is full. Watch the video to see how an overactive bladder can cause children to wet the bed.|
Causes of bedwetting- overproduction of urine
|Overproduction of urine occurs in children who do not produce enough vasopressin, a natural hormone which reduces urine production at night. See how the brain increases its production of vasopressin at night to prevent bed wetting in this video.|
Bed wetting treatments
My dryness tracker
A free app for individuals being treated for bedwetting (nocturnal enuresis), or who plan to see a doctor about the condition. Features a bedwetting checklist, day-time and night-time voiding diaries, alarm therapy progress tracker, desmopressin progress tracker (restricted access), WetAlert® enuresis alarm ordering facility and treatment progress reports. Available from the App Store and Google play for use on smartphone and tablet.
Living with bed wetting
Toilet training (potty training)
Toilet training is an important developmental milestone and can be a challenging step for both parents and toddlers. A child is considered fully toilet trained when they are conscious of the fact that they need to pass urine or open their bowels and can take themselves to the toilet without reminders from their parents.
For more information, see Toilet Training (Potty Training).
Preventing bed wetting
|The exact mechanism behind bed wetting is poorly understood making prevention of this disorder difficult to study. Bed wetting is a complex phenomenon that results from the interaction of several factors which may include underlying medical conditions, genetics, developmental and psychosocial factors.|
For more information, see Preventing Bed Wetting.
The impact of bed wetting
|Bed wetting carries a significant burden for both the affected child and their family. Children who wet their bed have lower self-esteem, restrictions on social activities and are at risk of physical and emotional abuse. Adult bed wetters have higher rates of depression, lower self-esteem and the condition has a significant impact on education and career choices.|
For more information, see Impact of Bed Wetting.
Stephen recalls his bed wetting days
|Bed wetting is very treatable and there is help at hand. We spoke to Stephen about his experience growing up with bed wetting and how he eventually managed to overcome it.|
For more information, see Nocturnal Enuresis: Stephen recalls his bed wetting days.