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Bed Wetting Diagnosis

Bed wetting is a very widespread problem in children that can cause a great deal of strife for both the bed wetting child as well as his or her family members.

After exhausting all basis methods for ending bed wetting, many parents decide to take their child to the doctor for a more professional opinion and help. It is important to realize that occasional bed wetting before the age of five is not considered a problem but it defined as such after that age when it happens on a consistent basis.


Directions for Your Child When Using a Bed Wetting Alarm

Bed wetting alarms have a very high success rate and are a great deal safer than are medications. Sometimes they are called moisture alarms or "conditioning" alarm units as they condition the brain to let the sleeping child know that they have to wake up and empty their bladder. Let’s look at some directions that need to be followed in order for the alarm to work properly.

First of make sure your child realizes that the bed wetting alarm will only work if it is used in the way it is supposed to be. Emphasize that its purpose is to wake the child up at the first sign of urine in order that the child can make it into the bathroom to finish wetting and not soak the bed instead. It is essential that the child is tuned into the alarm and responds when it begins to vibrate or ring. Ignoring the alarm, sleeping through it or simply turning it off will defeat the purpose of it entirely.

Practice using the alarm with your child in the daytime so he or she will know what to expect when it rings at night. For example let your child help you when it comes to setting the alarm. Try it out beforehand by having your child gently touch the moisture sensors of the alarm with a finger dabbed in water to hear what the sound the alarm will make. Then have the child practice getting out of bed and quickly making their way to the washroom to finish urinating in the toilet, instead of the bed.

It is a good idea to not have your child sleeping in the pitch black dark, seeing as he will have to jump up in the night (perhaps more than once) to use the bathroom. Having a flashlight near the bed or putting in a strong night-light to help your child find their way to the bathroom is a good idea. Also remember that most people’s minds are a bit fuzzy when they are awakened suddenly and you don’t want your child to stumble and fall and perhaps even hurt himself.

Educate your child on how to "self-awaken" himself during the night when the need to urinate arises. In other words, encourage your child to "beat the buzzer" and recognize the signs of a full bladder before the alarm has a need to let him know. By so doing this should cause no urine to end up being spilled anywhere but where it should be- in the toilet. There may be occasions when your child can "beat the buzzer" and other times he cannot. Be supportive and understanding in these instances. If the child doesn’t know ahead of time and the buzzer does go off to tell him, teach your child how best to wake himself up and then as swiftly as possible leave his bed and go into the bathroom and use the toilet.

The child then needs to return to his bedroom and turn off the alarm. Once all this is done the child should change into dry underwear or a dry pajama bottom and then rest the alarm. As far as the wet fitted sheet goes, it can be decided ahead of time whether it is to be changed in the night or whether a dry towel or pad is to be placed over the spot that is wet and the sheet then changed in the morning.


A doctor will need to ask specific questions of the parent of the bed wetter regarding family history and the child’s past medical history. The doctor will ask- Did you experience any medical complications when the child was born? He or she will also want to know if your child has ever had a problem with his central nervous system. Did either of the child’s parents ever wet the bed as youngsters and/or was there anyone else in the family that did? A doctor will also inquire as to whether a child has ever undergone any type of surgery and whether he or she has ever sustained any injury to the abdominal area, which could encompass the kidneys, bladder and genital area.

Recent studies into bed wetting have should that an estimated fifteen to twenty-five percent of children at five years old wet their beds but as they grow the percentage of children who wet their beds decreases by an estimated fifteen percent. Approximately eight percent of twelve-year-old males experience bed wetting whereas only four percent of females at the same age do so. Among teenagers a small percentage wet suffer from nocturnal enuresis (approximately one to three percent). There are two kinds of bed wetting or enuresis- primary enuresis and secondary enuresis- and while primary enuresis is more common, approximately fifteen to twenty-five percent of bed wetters suffer from secondary enuresis (or enuresis that is stress related).

One of the ways a doctor distinguishes primary enuresis from secondary enuresis is by asking of the parent, "At what age was your child consistently dry at night?" If the answer is "My child was never dry at night" then the child suffers from primary enuresis, as secondary enuresis is when bed wetting begins or starts again after a child has been free of it for a period of at least six months.

Enuresis can be considered complicated or uncomplicated. If your child suffers from nocturnal enuresis and daytime incontinence then he is likely to have uncomplicated enuresis. If your child suffers pain in the lower back or abdominal area upon urination then a urinary tract infection is likely the cause of the bed wetting problem. If your child does not have regular bowel movements then he likely suffers from constipation and constipation can cause bed wetting to take place. As well if your child has a difficult time passing a bowel movement then constipation is to blame and the child therefore requires more fiber in his daily diet to alleviate this health problem.