Bedwetting: A Sensitive Secret Kids Keep to Themselves

If your child has a bedwetting issue, he is likely not to want to tell anyone about it. Bedwetting is much more common than many parents know. There are many different causes for this issue. It could be developmental, physical, psychological or medical. Some children wet their beds at night because of a bladder infection. Some kids have very small bladders that can’t hold a lot of urine. Some do not produce enough of a hormone that reduces nighttime urine production. Others are very deep sleepers and don’t wake up when the bladder is full. Bedwetting can even be the result of a stress due to a change in a child’s life such as a move, a new job, the arrival of a new baby, or a death in the family. To understand the underlying cause of your child’s bedwetting, parents should begin with a visit to the family doctor or pediatrician.    

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Here are some tips that parents and kids can use to help them manage:

  • Spend time together. If you think it is connected to a major change in your child’s life, take time together to connect. That extra bit can help to make her feel special and more secure. The bedwetting may resolve itself in time without any help from you.

  • Get medical input. Be sure you have sound medical advice before you create a ‘go forward plan.’ Do not assume you know what is behind this issue.

  • Do not punish. Some parents threaten, scold, or punish the child in order to get her to stop wetting the bed at night. This is not her fault. Instead, be empathetic and let her know you will help her get past this. She may feel overwhelmed as to how to manage the situation. If you ask how you can help her to manage accidents, you will empower her and build her confidence.

  • Get educated together. Books and websites offer information and strategies.  Find options that make sense for your family. Take a collaborative approach and read together so he understands how common this is. Many children outgrow bedwetting on their own.

  • Be your child’s champion. Too often, parents focus on the wet nights instead of the dry ones. Focus on the positive. Avoid any negative comments and only champion the successful nights so your child’s confidence builds. Continue to let him know that you are pleased at his mature and confident attitude.

Tips for sleepovers:

  • Don’t avoid sleepovers. Send a message of encouragement to your child that he can participate in sleepover visits anytime he wants. Help him pack his bag with an extra pair of pajamas, and disposable underpants to help protect his privacy. Include some talcum powder for that fresh dry feeling or anything else that will help him feel at ease.

  • If comfortable, teach your child to educate and advocate. If the source of the issue is medical, you may be comfortable teaching your child how to let friends and family know about bedwetting. Sometimes, letting the cat out of the bag helps the child to relax knowing that he doesn’t have to hide. Friends and family can be enormously kind and supportive if given the right knowledge and information.

  • Take a pulse. After the sleepover, check in with your child as to how things went.  Put on your coaching hat and ask questions that begin with WHAT and HOW, such as “How was the sleepover?” or “What was great about your sleepover?” or “What do you know now that you didn’t know before?”  This will give you a sense of her comfort level for future outings.

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Image: giovanni_giusti

By Terry Carson| September 20, 2014
Categories:  Nest
Keywords:  Concious Parenting

About the Author

Terry Carson

Terry Carson

Terry Carson is an educator and mother of four. A popular resource as a parenting coach expert throughout North America, she’s been featured repeatedly in the media including The Globe and Mail, Today’s Parent, Planet Parent, Save Us From Our House, Breakfast Televison, Yummy Mummy and countless radio shows and publications.

Terry helps her parent clients get back their control without spanking or shouting. Her most popular workshop, You’re Not The Boss of Me!, provides seventeen strategies to get rid of whining, not listening, complaining, temper tantrums, and other power struggles. For more information on Terry and her workshops, visit:

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