How to prevent bedwetting in children

As a parent, you get frustrated and exhausted when trying to prevent bed-wetting among your children without success. There’s a joy as you watch your little ones grow up. First, they learn to crawl, then they start to walk, and finally, they can run without falling. Yet, one thing that seems too stuck with them; as they grow up, they still find it hard to control their bladders at night and end up wetting their beds.

Bedwetting happens at night hours when a child pees during sleep without knowing it.

This can be an embarrassing situation to the child who may be in a dilemma on how to prevent bedwetting. A child who bed wets may avoid slumber parties and weekend trips, as the dreadful fear of bedwetting, haunts them. When it happens that they have to sleep away from home, they may lay awake till late at night, and wake up in the morning feeling wet with urine. Since other children may make fun of them, their confidence and social life become affected.

Most children outgrow bedwetting from the age of 5 to 6 years. Yet, bedwetting can still be a problem to many children beyond 7 years, more so, in boys and deep sleepers. When the child is beyond 5 years of age, bedwetting becomes an “involuntary urination”.

This article presents working solutions on how to prevent bedwetting in children.

When bedwetting affects your child's self-esteem.
Bedwetting can affect your child’s self-esteem.

When to worry as a parent when you can’t prevent bedwetting

  • You should worry as a parent when the bedwetting issue becomes a problem for your child. This occurs at 8 to 10 years of age when their confidence is hard-knocked.
  • When your child continues to bed wet after 7 years of age, you should talk with your pediatrician. In most scenarios, the underlying situation is a blader that’s not yet matured.
  • If your child stops to bed wet for over 6 months and then starts to bed wet again, talk with your doctor. Emotional, behavioral, or medical issues may be the underlying cause of bedwetting.
  • When your child is having daytime accidents.
  • When your child pees very frequently and has a burning sensation when peeing.
Causes of bed wetting in children.
Causes of bedwetting.

Causes of bedwetting in children

Outlined below are the common causes of bedwetting in children:

  • Deep sleeping children may find it hard to empty their bladder when it’s full.
  • Smaller bladders to handle a lot of produced urine. When the child takes a lot of fluids before bedtime, they may produce a lot of urine than their bladders can handle. This forces the bladder to empty itself while the child is asleep.
  • Constipation can cause bedwetting. As the bowel presses on a full bladder, the bladder empties itself.
  • Emotional problems such as stress and depression may contribute to bedwetting. It is important to show unconditional love to all your children. You can also read “How to show love to your children without words everyday:top 8 proven ways”.
  • According to scientists, bedwetting can be genetically inherited. A child with one parent who wet the bed when they were young is 25% more likely to experience the same problem. But, if both parents wet their beds as children, the chance of their children wetting their beds rises to 65%.
Steps to prevent bedwetting in children.
Bedwetting natural solutions for children.

Steps to prevent bedwetting in children

To prevent bedwetting in children, doctors suggest to:

1. Encourage the child that it’s normal and there’s nothing to worry about. If your child is beyond 7 years of age, he or she may feel concerned since most of their peers don’t bed wet. As a parent, talk with your child and discuss the ways they can prevent bed-wetting on their own without a doctor. As they make progress, make them feel good. When they fail, don’t get alarmed.

2. Help your child reduce fluid intake as bedtime approaches. To achieve this, they should increase fluid intake during the day and afternoon, and reduce it towards the evening. As they drink a lot of water during the day, they will reduce a thirst overload as bedtime approaches. After supper, they should take very little fluid. While keeping an eye on fluid intake, encourage them to pee on regular basis and also right before going to bed.

3. Help your child cut down on bladder irritants such as chocolate milk, cocoa, citrus juices, among others.

4. Avoid waking up your child at night so that they can empty their bladder as this may disrupt their sleep. Let them wake on their own. You may also use an alarm, and make sure they can reach the bathroom at night by providing a night light in the hall or bathroom.

5. Find out if constipation may be contributing to your child’s bedwetting problem. Since the rectum is right behind the bladder, constipation problems may present themselves as bladder problems during the night. This affects about one-third of bedwetting children.

6. Help the child sleep early so that they can have enough time to rest. Deep sleepers don’t get enough time to sleep. An earlier bedtime may thus resolve the deep sleeping and bedwetting issue. To achieve this, create a good sleeping environment by cutting down screen time.

7. Avoid resorting to anger when no changes occur, instead, encourage your child to keep at it. Also, use a plastic mattress cover to reduce damage to the mattress.

8. Use a specially designed alarm for bed-wetting children. The alarm goes off when your child starts to pee and helps them wake up when they have a full bladder. Your child should use it daily for a period of 6 weeks to 3 months to be effective in preventing bedwetting.

9. As a final resort, your doctor may prescribe Desmopressin acetate or DDAVP. This is a medication used to treat bedwetting. It has been in use since the 1970s and studies show that it works for most children. Although medications may not be necessary, the Desmopressin pill may help in special situations. This may include sleepovers or camps.

Are there medications to prevent bed wetting?

There are medications, such as Desmopressin, that can prevent bedwetting. But, depending on your child’s situation, drugs may not be necessary. Since these drugs have side effects; such as headache and stomach pain which can affect the child, a doctor’s prescription is important. The medications are also not a permanent solution to bedwetting and the problem may still persist. However, during special occasions such as sleepovers or camps, you may encourage your child to take the pill.


It is important to let your child outgrow bed-wetting on their own. Medications may only present complications in the future. The only help you can give your child as a parent is comfort, support, and encouragement.

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