Nocturnal Enuresis Or Bed Wetting in Child | How to Stop?

 Nocturnal Enuresis Or Bed Wetting in Child

How To Stop?


Nocturnal Enuresis

Nocturnal Enuresis or Bed wetting in child, or sleep enuresis, refers to the unintentional passage of urine either day or in night time during sleep.

Enuresis is the medical term known for wetting, whether during the day or at night. Enuresis is also known as urinary incontinence.

Urination is involuntary function for infants and young children, thus wetting is normal for them. Mostly children achieve their bladder control by 4 years of age.

Nocturnal Enuresis Age

Generally the experts recommend that bed wetting at the age 7 is normal. Factors that affect the nocturnal enuresis age at which wetting is considered a problem include the following:

    • The child’s gender: Sleep enuresis is 30% higher in boys.
    • The child’s development and maturity
    • The child’s overall emotional and physical health. Nocturnal enuresis is a very common problem.

Bed Wetting Types

Nocturnal enuresis are of two types: primary and secondary.

Primary nocturnal enuresis refers to enuresis that has been continuing since birth without a break.

Secondary bed wetting is that restart after the child has been dry at night for a certain period of time (at least six months).

In general, immatured nervous system is considered to be responsible for primary bed wetting.

A sleep enuresis child cannot recognize their full bladder sensation while sleeping and therefore does not awaken to urinate.

Nocturnal Enuresis Causes

The bed wetting causes is likely due to the following reasons:

  • The child not able to hold urine for the entire night.
  • The child does not able to recognize the sensation of the full bladder.
  • Some children may have a smaller bladder volume than their peers.
  • The child produces a large amount of urine during the evening and night hours.
  • The child has poor daytime toilet habits.

Causes Of Nocturnal Enuresis In Older Children

More than the people think, 1-2% of 15 years old children are affected by nocturnal enuresis or nighttime sleep enuresis.

The causes include factors like family history, diabetes, urine or other type infection and effect of certain medication. The another factors that cause sleep enuresis are:

  • male gender and family history;
  • medical conditions such as abnormal anatomy or function of the bladder, kidneys, or neurological system;
  • sleep apnea;
  • chronic constipation;
  • sexual abuse;
  • excessive fluid intake before bedtime;
  • urinary tract infection; and
  • some medications (such as caffeine).

 What Specialists Should Consult To Treat Bed wetting?

Routine evaluation of both primary and secondary enuresis is done by a pediatrician or a family physician.

If it is not helpful or the symptoms of nocturnal enuresis seems more complex, a consultation with a pediatric urologist would be better.

 What Tests Requires Nocturnal enuresis?

  • A routine urine test (urinalysis) is recommended by the doctor to rule out any UTI (urinary tract infection) or kidney infection.
  • If child have any complaint of pain or other related issue, an X-ray or ultrasound of the kidneys and bladder may be recommended by the doctor.

 Nocturnal Enuresis Treatment

Nocturnal Enuresis Treatment is avoided of an uncomplicated enuresis case of child at age below 7 years.

Nocturnal Enuresis: How To Stop?

bedwetting alarm

  • Almost all children age of 5 years and older stop bed wetting enuresis by their own without any treatment. Doctor consultation needs to observe the child to stop bed wetting at age 7 onward.

Here are some successful tips for helping your child to stop wetting the bed.

  • Reduce evening fluid intake. The child should try not to take excessive fluids. The nocturnal enuresis child should avoid chocolate, caffeine, carbonated drinks, or citrus.
  • The child should have habit to urinate in the toilet before bedtime.
  • Help the child understand that it is important to wake up every night to use the toilet.
  • The toilet path of baby should be safe, clear and have properly lightened. Provide a portable toilet if possible.

The parents’ attitude towards stop bed wetting their child is very important by motivating them.

how to stop nocturnal enuresis

  • Avoid punishing or blaming the child. Blaming and punishing just creates frustration in child as Nocturnal enuresis is not under control by the child.
  • Be patience and supportive. Reassure and encourage the child often.
  • Do not make an issue out the bed wetting each time it happens.
  • Enforce a “no teasing” rule in the family.
  • Do not discuss the bed wetting in front of other family members as well as other than family members.
  • Reassure the child that you are with them to overcome the problem.
  • If applicable, remind him that a close relative successfully dealt with this same issue.
  • Use washable absorbent sheets, waterproof bed covers, and room deodorizers to maintain hygiene.



Bed wetting alarms have become the mainstay of treatment.

  • It is a 12-14 weeks schedule that help the children stop bed wetting after using these alarms.
  • Few children start wetting the bed again when the alarm is relapse (discontinued). However, repeating this alarm 2-3 times helps in getting the positive result in the long run.
  • There are two types of alarms: audio and tactile (buzzing) alarms.
  • The principle is that the wetness of the urine bridges a gap in the sensor, which in turn sets off the alarm. It’s Wearable unit is small and easy-to-use. Small sensor is clipped to underwear while the magnetic clip is attached to pajama top. No dangerous pins, cumbersome tape, or time consuming sewing required.
  • The alarm wakens and motivates your child to go to the bathroom to finish urinating, changes clothes and the bedding, resets the alarm, and returns to sleep. Initially the parents may help the children in changing the bedding and resetting the alarm. (
  • Alarms are preferred over medications for children because they have no side effects.
  • For the alarm to be effective, the child must keen to use it.

Beware of devices or other treatments that promise a quick “cure” for nocturnal enuresis.

There really are the fake devices that somehow may harm your baby. It is a matter of motivation and patience with time to stop bed wetting in older child.

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