7 Strategies to Help You Deal with Your Kid Wetting the Bed

It’s so unpleasant and also so common, but what can you do about it? Consider what the experts say.

There are many reasons why kids struggle with bedwetting. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 20% of five-year-olds and 10% of six-year-olds are bedwetters.1 Pediatricians believe there is a genetic component to it, because most kids “go dry” at the same age their parents did. Some children actually have medical reasons for wetting the bed, like constipation or infection.1 The other primary reason it happens is simply a delay in the mechanisms that control the bladder.

Most kids outgrow this inconvenient habit eventually if they are not suffering from medical or psychological issues, and here are a few simple suggestions to take into account when trying to solve the bedwetting problem.

  1. Consult your pediatrician. Rule out the aforementioned medical issues that might cause your child to wet the bed by visiting the doctor. He or she can ask specific questions and make suggestions tailored to your child’s unique situation.
  2. Urinary Bed Alarms. This seems elaborate but it’s actually pretty simple: a censor that detects moisture on the jammies or underwear. The device makes a sound that wakes the child so he or she can get to the bathroom.
  3. Reward. Some kids just need a little extra motivation when it comes to getting up in the middle of the night to pee. Set up a little chart and when your child has three nights of dry bed in a row, take him or her to the movies, or some other special treat.
  4. Lifting. This is a technique that many parents have had success with: put the kid on the potty right before bed, then wake him or her up two hours later and do it again. It feels a little risky to some parents to actually wake up the little one, and it takes patience, but sometimes that two or three hours can become automatic.
  5. Bladder training. This strategy involves using a timer, and when your child says he or she has to go, you set it for a minute, then two, and incrementally add time. The idea is for youngsters to learn to hold it long enough to make it to the potty.
  6. Stay positive. Enforce a “no teasing” rule in the house and keep the focus on the problem of the wet bed, rather than making it about your child. Remain encouraging and have him or her help with cleaning up the mess to take responsibility.
  7. Waterproof sheets and less liquid at bedtime. Sometimes these little things can help a lot. Try ceasing drinks two hours before bed and protecting the mattress with a rubber sheet. Another thing you might try is putting a portable potty in the bedroom so kids can jump up right away without going down the hall to the bathroom.

When you talk to your child’s doctor, discuss some of these options and come up with a plan so you and your family can be consistent. It takes practice like anything else, and some children just need a little more help than others. Most kids outgrow the issue by the time they are eight to eleven.





  1. http://www.webmd.com/children/features/stop-bedwetting

About Susie Almaneih

Susie Almaneih spent several years during her young adulthood teaching children dance at her church group, as well as other cultural-based activities. Susie now spends as much time as she can giving back to the families in her community. Over the years, this love for community has evolved into a deeper love for delivering positive and creative content and awareness to families of all ages.

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