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Bed Wetting

Bed wetting (sometimes called nocturnal enuresis) is when children wet the bed without realising. It can run in families - if a parent wet the bed as a child, their child is more likely to.

Things You Can Do to Help

 

  • Make sure your child has a varied diet, including lots of fruit and vegetables. This prevents them from becoming constipated (having too much poo in their tummy), which can cause bed wetting. Take a look at our constipation page for more tips.
  • Make sure that your child has their last drink at least an hour before bed. It is still important to have plenty to drink in the day (6-8 cups). Avoid fizzy drinks and drinks which contain caffeine, like tea, coffee, cola and energy drinks. These can irritate the bladder
  • Make sure your child has a wee before bed. Don’t lift your child out of bed when asleep as this does not allow them to learn to wake themselves to go to the toilet
  • Some children can start bed wetting as an emotional reaction to something like being bullied or being anxious about something
  • Don’t tell your child off for bed wetting - it is not something they can control
  • Make sure your child has easy access to the toilet if they do need the toilet at night
  • Get a waterproof mattress protector to protect the bed and have spare bed sheets to hand
  • Some families find using a bed wetting alarm can help as it alerts your child to the fact they are beginning to wee
  • Download the guide to night time wetting from the link below for more hints and tips
  • You should speak to your GP if your child has symptoms as well as bed wetting such as: a fever, pain when weeing, constipation, tiredness, or feeling thirsty all the time.

Who Can Help?

At every child’s Being 2 Development Review you can discuss toilet training and ask any questions. You can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

You can speak to health professionals, such as your GP, who may refer you to the paediatric continence team. They will usually ask about your child’s toilet habits, so it would be useful to keep a diary of wees and poos, day and night, for a week.

You can also contact the ERIC Helpline 0845 370 8008 (charges apply) and email helpline@eric.org.uk for support and advice on bed wetting.

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