Why Do Kids Wet the Bed?


Wetting the Bed at Night

Bedwetting is a normal part of growing up.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, around 20% of children have some issues with bedwetting until age 5. 10% still have problems up to age 7, and 1-3% of children may continue to experience these problems until their late teens.

how to handle bed wetting

Bed Wetting Causes:

Genetics

If one or both parents wet the bed as a child, their child will likely have the same issue. How likely? According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the child has a 40% chance of having problems with bed wetting if one parent wet the bed and a 70% chance if both parents wet the bed.

Growing Pains

Not every child’s body develops at the same rate. The nervous systems of some children are slower to mature, so a full bladder doesn’t wake them up. Other children haven’t developed complete control over their bladder yet.

Sleep Issues

Bedwetting can also be an issue if your child is a very deep sleeper. Similarly, if your child is having trouble sleeping, they may fall into a deeper sleep in those rare moments that they do sleep.

Stress

Major changes in a child’s life, such as moving, divorce, or a new baby in the house can stress a child to the point that they begin to wet the bed.

Medical Reasons

There are numerous medical reasons why a child might suddenly start wetting the bed such as a urinary tract infection, constipation, a hormonal imbalance, a small bladder, or in rare cases, conditions such as diabetes.

How to Handle Bed Wetting

It’s important that as a parent, you are not embarrassed by your child;s bedwetting. Having an open, honest conversation with your child’s pediatrician about the issue can help to rule out any medical causes.

Bedwetting almost always goes away on its own, but there are other treatments your doctor may recommend, such as bedwetting alarms or medications.

Most importantly, don’t make your child feel any worse about the situation than they likely already do. Most children are humiliated when they wake up in a puddle of their own urine during the middle of the night. Don’t yell at them or punish them. Your kids are not wetting the bed on purpose; they are simply going through a normal stage of physical development.  

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