Bedwetting is considered as a common, albeit embarrassing, nighttime occurrence among young children. Also known as nocturnal enuresis, bedwetting is typically characterized by the child urinating the bed in the middle of the night. Experts say that bedwetting is a normal phase during a child’s potty-training years, with millions of children all over the globe experiencing it right now.
According to experts, bedwetting can be seen as a sign of the last stages of potty training. During this stage, your child is already learning how to control their bladder during the day, but they still haven’t mastered how to do such during the night. As bladder control requires coordination between the nerves, muscles, brain, and spinal cord, it proves to be quite a complex process for little ones. It also needs some maturity to get over bedwetting, which can be achieved through close supervision and rigorous training.
However, there are also other causes to bedwetting, especially if it occurs after the child has already been potty trained. A small amount of cases may be due to a physical ailment like a urinary tract infection, diabetes, or a neurological or a structural issue. In most cases, it is a manifestation of the child’s stress, as bedwetting occurs during an impending change, like the start of school, arrival of a new baby, a conflict in the home, or abuse.
Aside from the mattress damage that bedwetting can cause, it also takes a lot out of your child. As mentioned earlier, bedwetting is seen as an embarrassing occurrence, especially if the kids are already finished their potty training period when it happened. It can cause them distress and can make them lose sleep, which can be detrimental to their health and growth. Reacting properly to bedwetting is essential, so you can effectively help your child get through it.
What should you do if your kid starts wetting the bed all of the sudden? Here are some tips experts suggest you try:
1. Create a regular bedtime routine, including a trip to the bathroom before lights are turned out.
2. Wake your child around the time when they will usually wet the bed to have a bathroom break. This will give them a chance to get to the bathroom before they urinate.
3. Talk to your child about their bedwetting. They have to know that this is common and that they shouldn’t get stressed about it. However, you should also let them know that they need to put some extra effort in making it stop. You can use a reward system that gives your kid a prize on dry nights or you can also encourage them and tell them about the perks of not wetting the bed, like no more diapers and officially becoming a big kid.
4. Add a rubber pad as a mattress topper and underneath the bed sheet to prevent the mattress from getting soaked. This can also help your child fall back to sleep easier, as they won’t have to sleep in another bed or a damp bed afterwards. It could also prevent substantially damaging your mattress.
5. Limit your child’s beverage intake during the evenings. If you think your child’s bedwetting is caused by the amount of liquid they drink before they go to bed, you can limit what they take in.
Being patient and understanding is especially important when your child is going through the bedwetting phase. You must handle the problem very calmly, as it can be a very sensitive matter for your child. How you react and handle the situation will affect how they respond and try to overcome their bedwetting, so you really have to tread on with great care.
Usually, bedwetting is not something parents should be worried about. Experts will assure you that it is a common stage in raising a child. However, if your little one still wets the bed at age 7 or over, seeing a pediatrician should be done immediately.