Bed Wetting

By Gabrielle. Image by Justin Hackworth

For a blog called Design Mom, sometimes I’m surprised how little I get into the nuts and bolts of parenting. I suppose it might be because the longer I’m a parent, the easier it is to see that I really have no idea how to do this job most of the time. And that almost nobody does. There’s a lot of winging it going on! But I was having a conversation with a friend, and her kindergartener is having trouble staying dry at night, and I replied, “Oh! I totally I wet the bed till I was in middle school. I even had to see a doctor about it. My parents handled it really well. And here’s how I learned to stay dry…”

Thinking about the conversation later, I realized I’d never talked about bed-wetting on Design Mom before. But I know a tiny bit about it, and who knows, my experience might help someone out there. So if you’re in the mood for a little only-parents-would-want-to-talk-about-this discussion, read on.

Yep. I wet the bed until middle school. And had a few memorable “accidents” into high school and beyond. As a child, of course I was painfully embarrassed about it, but as an adult it’s basically the least traumatic thing in the world. Outside of parenting conversations, I never give it a second thought.

Among my 8 siblings, I’m the only one that wet the bed. I’m sure my parents thought I would just grow out of it at some point. They never made a big deal about it, and were very discreet about the whole thing. My 4 older siblings knew (how could they not notice?), but they were kind as can be about it — they never really even mentioned it. And they certainly never teased or were cruel about it. So I was super lucky. I don’t know if my 3 younger siblings ever noticed or knew.

The only part that I sensed tension at home about, was that my Mom couldn’t keep up with cleaning the sheets. (I say Mom, because my Dad was not a great housework contributor.) On some nights, I would sleep on a towel over dry but pee-stained sheets. And I remember not wanting to talk to my mom about it because I could see it stressed her out. As an adult, I can guess that the stress was that she was feeling guilty that she wasn’t somehow providing fresh sheets every night, and that she didn’t know how to help me stop wetting the bed. Of course, that breaks my heart, because she didn’t need to feel any guilt. Sleeping on dirty sheets is not the end of the world.

Sometimes late at night, when making rounds and tucking people in, my mom would rouse me from bed and sleep-walk me to the bathroom, and then sleep-walk me back. And I would wake up dry the next morning. Most of the time I didn’t even know she’d woken me up unless I asked the next day.

Outside the house, the stress about wetting the bed is what you might expect. It became an issue around 4th or 5th grade when I started getting invited to sleepover parties. So scary for me! I was very social and of course wanted to go. But I was terrified of wetting the bed in front of my friends. So I came up with strategies. They mostly involved not drinking any liquid all day long and praying over and over again that I wouldn’t wet the bed that night. And sometimes it would work. But not always. Sometimes I would wake up and then have to wait until everyone else left the room so I could hide my wet undies, nightgown and sleeping bag before anyone saw the evidence.

Related, I never felt like I could casually hang out with friends in my bedroom. I needed to make sure there were no signs of bed-wetting before anyone came in.

But again, I was lucky. I had about the least traumatic experience with bed-wetting that a kid can have.

So how did I stop? Well, when I was in 6th grade, my parents decided it was time to see a doctor about this. I still hadn’t grown out of it, and it hadn’t even slowed down. Alas, the doctor happened to be the father of a boy in my 6th grade class, which was about as mortifying as it gets for an 11 year old. I was absolutely postive the doctor would be discussing my bed wetting at his family dinner that evening. But aside from that, it was really just a check up. And no, there was nothing in particular that was causing the bed wetting.

The conclusion was that I was simply a really deep sleeper — that I peed in the night and never even noticed it had happened. And this is true. I am still a very deep sleeper. And I love sleep. If I had to pick between sleeping and eating, sleep would win every time.

So what to do about the bed wetting?

Well, the doctor recommended a couple of options. First, there was some sort of device that I could wear at night that would detect moisture. If I started to pee, the device would set off an alarm to wake me up, so I could head to the bathroom. The idea was that eventually my body would learn to wake up at the same time every night and the problem would be solved.

I didn’t want anything to do with option 1. It drew tons of attention to the problem. The alarm might wake up my siblings! And the device was sure to be uncomfortable. And what was so wrong with sleeping through the night? Disrupting sleep seemed like a bad idea. If my parents had forced me to try option one, I’m sure there would have been many, many tears.

So then, it was option 2. With option two, I was instructed to drink whatever I normally drank in the morning (it was the 80’s, so that meant a glass of orange juice made from frozen concentrate). Then, I should go to school, or go about my day, and continue drinking normally (at lunch, at the water fountain during recess, etc.), but I was not supposed to pee until after school, say 3:30 or 4:00 PM. That’s right. I was just supposed to hold it for 8 or 9 hours. The idea here was to stretch my bladder so that it was capable of holding enough pee to get through the night.

So I went with option 2. And except on rare occasions, for the rest of 6th grade and into 7th grade, I never peed until after school.

And it worked!

My bladder grew. And I stopped wetting the bed.

Except for a few “accidents” over the years, including at a babysitting job on a couch, at a sleepover with the two most popular girls in high school during my senior year, and once when I was very pregnant with Maude  — and went to the hospital thinking my water had broke. Sigh.

So that’s it. A pretty simple fix. I’m no expert, and there are no doubt new methods and research about bed wetting that I’m not aware of. But I’m sharing this in case it helps, or offers reassurance to anyone out there dealing with this. No guilt, Friends! It’s going to be okay.

P.S. — I assumed at least one of my kids would have my bed-wetting genes, but not one of them followed in my footsteps. Such a waste of my “vast” bed-wetting knowledge. : )

P.P.S. — TMI warning: As an adult, my 9-hour bladder means I still rarely take bathroom breaks during the day. And never during the night. In fact, during my pregnancies, one of the things I found most bothersome was having to use the bathroom multiple times throughout the day, because the baby was taking up valuable bladder space. Hah! I found it so disruptive.

177 thoughts on “Bed Wetting”

  1. thanks for this insight! our 6 year old daughter is a bed wetter and very deep sleeper. our pediatrician has put some pressure on us to get her to stay dry through the night, but i am of the thought that disrupting sleep is the last option. we haven’t put the pressure on us or our daughter after it was causing her visible stress. we plan to wait it out and see what happens. i have never thought of stretching the bladder by not going to the bathroom all day-this may be a technique to use in the future. thankfully, there are underjams, we don’t deal with dirty sheets too much!

  2. Thanks for being open about this and posting about it. I am going to let you know what my pediatrician told me and we have found to be true, though. We haven’t yet figured out the through the night thing. (My daughter is 6, so we are just not making an issue about it for right now). At night she can literally pee until her socks are wet and never wake up. All night. Sometimes if she’s all curled up her sheets aren’t even wet, just her pants and socks. it’s crazy. Anyway, she’s a more sensitive kid, we have some family stress, and she is a kid that holds everything. Pee and poop. But usually just pee. The more you hold and stretch your bladder, at some point you can over stretch it and it makes it possible to develop UTIs or bladder spasms. The bladder spasms make it hard to tell when you actually need to urinate, and difficult to completely void the bladder. My daughter, from holding urine in, got to the point where she had to go on a muscle relaxant to prevent spasms, because she was needing to void up to 20 times a day. all this was from holding the urine. So I guess would you consider modifying this post to say — please consult with your dr. before you decide to try this? Because I am concerned it could cause well meaning parent to actually worsen the issues. Check out the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse ( Infrequent or Incomplete Voiding
    Infrequent voiding is when children voluntarily hold urine for prolonged periods of time. For example, children may not want to use the toilets at school or may not want to interrupt enjoyable activities, so they ignore the body’s signal of a full bladder. In these cases, the bladder can overfill and leak urine. In addition, these children often develop UTIs, leading to an irritated or overactive bladder.
    Factors that may combine with infrequent voiding to produce daytime UI include: small bladder capacity, structural problems, anxiety-causing events, pressure from constipation, drinks or foods that contain caffeine
    Sometimes, overly demanding toilet training may make children unable to relax the sphincters enough to completely empty the bladder. Incomplete voiding may also lead to UTIs.

    1. Oh man. I read things like this and think: Wow. I really have it easy. Having stress around using the bathroom — which is obviously a daily part of life — must be awful. And you know the stress is coming again the next day!

      It reminds me that I need to be nice to everyone. People deal with hard things every day and we rarely even know about it.

  3. Our daughter of 10 still has bed wetting issues and, like me, is a very deep sleeper. We are all fine with it. She even crawls in bed with us in the middle of the night along with her sibling. If there is an accident one of us gets a towel and lays it out and we all go back to sleep. It’s kind of funny. Even funnier though is that she had a friend sleep over recently and our daughter accidentally pottied all over herself and her friend. Thankfully her friend hadn’t noticed yet so I told my husband that he had to go out and take one for the team for the sake of his daughter… He went out to where the girls were still lying down and chatting with two glasses of water to offer up to them and conveniently tripped and spilled them on the bed where the girls were. He apologized up and down and my daughter giggled knowing that her friend wouldn’t know. Her friend proceeded to laugh at my husband for his clumsiness. I was so happy that my daughter has a Daddy like him :)

  4. Love this post! And I love that you were able to stretch your bladder, I’m going to try it with my kids. Just wanted to chime in that bed wetting can be the result of sleeping deep, but also having low ADH (the hormone that tells the kidneys to stop producing urine at night). Many kids don’t produce this fully until puberty or beyond! It is truly out of their control.

    Also, a tip. Use vinegar in your rinse cycle when doing laundry and you will keep your bedding smelling nice and fresh! I cloth diapered for awhile and this was the only trick that saved our house from the stench when doing laundry!

  5. I have 2 boys (7 & 12)-both wet the bed and I did up until 12. Both wear good nights. The 12 yr old has tried meds before but they made him stop after a month- no change. They will outgrow eventually.

  6. I was a bedwetter, too. (Nicknamed “Princess Midnight Running Water”) My two year old stays dry 29/30 nights, but for those few times she has accidents, a little tip I picked up somewhere has saved my sleep. Mattress, sheet, mattress pad, sheet. In the middle of the night I just have to peel off the sheet and mattress pad, grab whatever blankets might have gotten wet and throw them in front of the washer. By the time she has a change of pajamas and undies on, she can be back in her bed, ready to sleep. It works great with sick kids, too! It’s one of those tips I feel like all new moms should be get at the hospital!

  7. Great post! Our 7.5 yr old son is a night time wetter, exactly like you – super deep sleeper. Waking him up at 11pm is a hilarious exercise because he’s still sleeping as we try and get him to pee.

    I wonder if the alarm works for deep sleepers too since I can imagine him sleeping through that too. I have never heard the idea of stretching your bladder a little! What an interesting thought. I want to try this now. He has been starting to have a couple dry nights so we’re hopeful, but I have to tell you I am so relieved to hear you and some of the commenters talk about how late it went on. Makes me feel less alone for sure.

    1. My son is using the alarm system via the public health system in Australia. He is the deepest sleeper and we weren’t sure how it could work. One of the things we were advised by the nurse was that when the alarm sounds we are allowed to go into his room and add to the disturbance by calling his name, clapping our hands and flicking lights on and off to rouse him but should not physically lift or assist him out of bed. For a week it seemed as though it was never going to happen but then he suddenly got it and would sleep through the night. I really appreciate having the expert assistance of a nurse to help us through this and let us know that it can take many weeks of persistence to master. if I had bought the mat myself I would have assumed that it wasn’t working for us and given up.

  8. This is so interesting. I had a VERY similar experience to what you describe, Gabby, but I’ve never met anyone (or at least, not that I’ve known about) who struggled so completely with bed wetting. I wet the bed nearly every night as a child. It continued (although with less frequency) into high school and I even wet the bed a few times my first year of college (which was totally mortifying). Sleepovers were the WORST. I love the solution that the doctor offered you. My parents went the alarm route but I hated it so much it never developed a habit. Stretching my bladder probably would have done the trick. Like yours, mine was due to deep sleep. I am still an extremely deep sleeper. I’m not exactly sure when my sleep habits changed, but I have gotten slightly lighter as a sleeper over the years and even still, I almost never get up to pee in the middle of the night.

    Anyway, thank you for sharing! I had not idea anyone else wet the bed as much as me. It felt pretty traumatic as as child. :)

  9. I definitely relate, the lengths I would go to to hide any evidence of bedwetting! I still remember the feeling of panic if a friend came over unannounced, I would do everything I could to avoid taking them into my bedroom until I had had the opportunity to discreetly whip off the plastic mattress protector that made a crumple sound if the bed was sat upon! Such subterfuge. Both my children wet the bed however in Australia the alarm system is a public health program which is available to all children over the age of six. Children are referred to a community health nurse who provides an alarmed sleep mat and a support program for its use. We are on week 4 of the program now and while we were advised that it is a game of “snakes and ladders” and may take 8 weeks it seems my eight yr old is almost “cured”. I am so proud and relieved for him, that he won’t have to go through his school days with a problem that affected me so greatly. My five yr old is next!

  10. Thank you so much for writing this post. I feel so much solidarity from your words and the words of your commenters. And I completely empathize with the guilty feelings of your mother. My son, who is 9, is a bedwetter. It’s been pretty much 4 to 5 times a week since he potty-trained 100 years ago. (My daughter, 6, has never had a wet night even once. Go figure.) We have tried everything, it seems. We used the alarm for nine months until it broke from use, with insignificant results. We woke him up at 2 a.m. and walked him to his bathroom for six solid months but he would usually still be wet in the morning. We’ve tried the DDAVP spray for a few months now, but no real luck yet. We changed his diet; modified his drinking habits. He takes it in stride but, like you, is manic about showing friends his room and has yet to accept a sleepover invite. Sometimes I just want to lay my head down and cry out of frustration (mine and his), because it just seems endless and impossible. On a few embarrassing occasions, I have even taken my frustration at washing sheets (and pads and mattress covers) yet again out on him, even though I know he can’t control it.

    Our doctor is very supportive, and helps me put it all in perspective. He has suggested it is time for behavior modification, waking him up every night at the same time so he learns to wake himself up. This is not the same as what we were doing before, which was essentially sleep-walking hm to the toilet. The doc says he needs to be fully awake and cognizant to set the routine. Not looking forward to that, because he is such a deep sleep that it literally takes about 20 minutes to get and keep him awake in the middle of the night. Hopefully after three months or so of waking him up completely, he will do it on his own! I will supplement this with your method, which I am intrigued by.

    It’s nice to talk about this. It seems like it affects a lot of people but there is such a stigma about it!

    1. We wore out two alarms with our son (who is also 9)! The two things that made the difference were:

      1. Exactly what your doctor said. We had to make sure he really, really woke up. It was so hard! We would keep him moving and ask him trivia questions until he was awake enough to answer. Sometimes we would even walk him downstairs and outside. The cool night air helped a ton. We did nothing for him, not even directing him to the bathroom, until we were sure he was wide, wide awake. (Then we did whatever we could to go back to bed quickly.)

      2. Goal setting. We let him choose a reward and then, depending on how big it was, set a goal of dry nights. At first, he thought all of his nights were dry (turns out he wasn’t as awake as we thought), but gradually he woke up faster and more thoroughly and would remember getting up. Then he started having more dry nights. One reward was going out to eat at a restaraunt with me. Another was a new toy. One was choosing the menu for dinner. That was the most motivating (and I would never have thought of it.)

      We started working on this three years ago, and he has been dry at night (mostly) for two years with one big relapse. He has maybe 5 accidents a year now. When he does, we put the alarm on for a week, but it never goes off.

      Good luck!

      1. Hi Emily,

        That’s great that the reward system is working for you guys. My parents tried that with me (as a child), but I wasn’t wetting the bed on purpose and no matter how hard I tried I never could meet the goals we set together (and consequently, never got the promised reward). I’m sure my parents didn’t intend for this to happen, but I ended up constantly just feeling like a failure because I just couldn’t will myself to stop wetting the bed and wake up!

        Anyway, glad you’ve found something that works for you.

        1. I so appreciate these posts and encouragement! I know if we keep trying things it will eventually work itself out. He had a dry night last night and so instead of his shower we got to indulge in some fab extra cuddle time. I treasure those monets!

    2. Hi Carrie P.! I would get frustrated with the nightly sheet washing too. I would sometimes take it out on my daughter, with much guilt afterwards. We are human and make mistakes. We just have to apologize to them and tell them we love them ;) My daughter out grew the bed wetting by middle school. And has no long term emotional scars whatsoever. She is now almost 18 years old and will be leaving for college next fall. Love and peace, Jill

  11. I was a bed wetter too. I must have grown out of it at some point, although I don’t remember how old I was. I do have memories of being worried about sleep-overs.
    I don’t have kids yet, but I’ve always wondered how deep sleepers do with infants. I sleep through almost anything at night. This week I slept through my dog needing to go out and she had an accident in the house. I also sleep through my alarms pretty often. I think I even walk across the room to turn one off without realizing it.
    My mom swears I won’t sleep through the sound of my own babies crying, but I’m curious what others like this did when their children were very young.

  12. I have one son (out of four kids) who cannot stay dry through the night. I think there’s definitely a genetic component, as my two younger sisters, and even my dad, had the same problem.

    I see a chiropractor for back pain and the last time I was in there I noticed a “we can help with bedwetting” pamphlet. I think I’ll try taking him in soon. It’s worth a shot.

  13. Thanks so much for this. My son is 9 and still wets the bed, usually the overnights can handle it. We are an adoptive family and he lived in an orphanage until he was 3, but was completely potty trained at that time. At first, I thought it was stress from all the changes in his life, but now I think he just doesn’t wake up. He is a great kid, very outgoing and charming. It’s been funny how many older mothers will confide that their now grown sons had the same problem when they were younger. (Birth kids all) I’ve just been kind of rolling with it, and he seems pretty unphased. He does stress about sleepovers though.

  14. Thanks for sharing! I was a sound sleeper as a child and wet the bed until I was 9 or 10. My dad also wet the bed until he was older, 12. I wore a diaper, and our mattress (I shared a bed with my little sister) had a protector covering it. If the sheets were wet in the morning, we’d strip the bedding when we got ready for school and put clean sheets on before going to bed. In between 4th and 5th grade I started taking medication to curb the problem. On the medication I don’t remember wetting the bed, and between 5th and 6th grade I stopped taking it and haven’t had issues since. I am so thankful my parents didn’t make a big deal about it, so as an adult, I often forget that I had this issue and look back on my childhood fondly (minus remembering the dread of bedtime at sleepovers or camp :) ).

  15. I’m so glad to have stumbled on this! My son is turning 9, and still wets the bed for the same reason: Incredibly deep sleep + an apparently small bladder capacity. We just roll with it- figuring we’re not going to mess with the sleep…but it never occurred to me that we could address the bladder! Will definitely check into this at his 9yo check-up!

  16. Thank you so much for this post! I wish I had read this when my 17 yr. old daughter was younger. She wet the bed until the end of middle school. We didn’t make a big deal about it either and figured she would out grow it, which she did. She missed out on the 5th grade week long science camp because of the bed wetting. Didn’t want to risk it. We had her wear pull ups for many years and that helped with the laundry! And she would only sleep over very close friends and I told her not to drink anything after 5 pm and to use the bathroom as much as possible before bedtime. I think your post will help alleviate many parents minds!

  17. I would worry that stretching the time in between pees would lead to UTIs (urinary tract infections)?!

    The story of peeing while pregnant and thinking it was your water breaking is hilarious! Thank you for sharing!

  18. So interesting. I have one bed-wetter. Dr said it is often genetic and due to deep sleep as well. But, gave us very different advice. The alarm was recommended, but he also said frequent urination is the key. According to him, stretching the bladder causes the person to lose sensitivity to the signals to go so they hold too long & wet. Wonder why such differences of opinion?

  19. Thanks – And thanks to the commenters. This seems to have hit a chord.

    Things have changed dramatically since we were kids. There are options for managing. Kids don’t have to wake up in a puddle (and moms don’t have to launder wet things every day).

    It’s even more important that attitudes have changed. My parents-in-law are doctors. Their medical school textbooks all say that bedwetting is emotional or psychological. When I was in college, the doctor at the health service (without even examining me) told me that my bedwetting was psychological. Now we know, scientifically, that is false: Kids don’t wet the bed because they (consciously or unconsciously) want to. It’s their bladders or their hormones or their deep sleep.

    And it’s genetic. They’ve even isolated the genes.

    One heartening thing to me is how many of the commenters mention that they have discussed it with other parents, so the parents of kids hosting sleepovers can help keep it discreet. That would only be possible if it there were a more general recognition and acceptance.

    All (5) of my siblings wet the bed at least until junior high. I didn’t – until I was 14. About the time they stopped, I started, and (on and off) I’ve been a bedwetter ever since.

    My Mom was great about it. She was calm and reassuring. She provided us with protection that made it bearable. We had to change our own beds and get our wet things in the laundry. For my siblings, with disposables, that was rare. For me, the disposables available back then were inadequate. So I had laundry almost every morning.

    All three of my kids wet the bed, although one is too young to be concerned about it and the other two are growing out of it.

    I’m going to put up a pointer to your post on my blog (, which discusses bdewetting science, attitudes, history, means of coping.

  20. When we took our bed wetting daughter to the doctor he suggested waking her up every night as many people have also mentioned. He really stressed the importance of waking her up at the same time every night so her body could adjust and her sleep cycle would be minimally disturbed. Thought that was worth passing along.

  21. Thank you so much for sharing this! My 6 year old still wets the bed but it hasn’t bothered him because I’ve tried to not make an issue of it. When it starts bothering him we’ll look into some of the solutions other commenters have tried.

  22. So fascinated by this post, as my 6 yr old daughter is a bedwetter. But interestingly, it has only be been for the last few months. She has been dry through the night since potty training at age two. But a few months ago she started wetting at night, EVERY night. Has anyone ever experienced this? We had her checked for UTI or bladder infection, but every seems fine physically. Maybe some sort of developmental change? I’m flummoxed.

  23. I have 5 kids and my 3 boys were all wetting the bed. When I addressed it with the pediatrician he was really old school and gave the “they will grow out of it talk” that really no parent wants to deal with when they are changing that many sheets daily! The pediatrician was 60 years old and I just didn’t buy that the only thing society could come up with was a wait and see approach or some sort of pharmaceutical. We suffered through a few more years and then I was more than exhausted from a nursing new baby and helping kids clean up wet beds at night and I cam across the They have a fabulous book which I bought with the alarm and all 3 boys were dry every night in appx 4 weeks. The alarm is helping to teach the muscle control. I highly recommend going to their sight and checking it out. There is was more information and help for kids and parents then there was 50 years ago. :)

  24. Thank you for sharing. It’s this type of candid writing that makes me love Design Mom so much. My 4 year old is a bed wetter and we wake her to pee at night but I can feel your mother’s pain on all that washing!

  25. Thank you for sharing your story. My 7 year old boy is also a deep sleeper, I can relate with your mom, and trying to find the best solution out there. We have also been told about the bed wetting alarm, and I didn’t even want to try it, knowing that my son is a deep sleeper, it probably wouldn’t even wake him up. But he is constantly going to the bathroom- sometimes 3 times in an hour. I will have to have him try the length of time between bathroom breaks. The doctor also says we need to give him more fiber. A combo. wouldn’t hurt.

  26. Pingback: Excellent blog post (and comments) | Bedwetting Mom

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  28. How it all started (part A)
    excuse me because some words are Unfamiliar as my mother language is not ENGLISH
    i am 17, a teen bed wetter and now i want to share my story that how it started.
    i remember i was 7 and was in grade 1 that wet my bed 1 or 2 in a month and it was not abig trouble but when ever it occured i had to wash my wet clothes myself.but this few wetting Prevent me from any sleepovers because when you know you are a bedwetter you can plan to what to do but wetting 1 or 2 in a month is not bedwetting to plan.anyway when iturned 10 that few wetting night went and i think i am outgrow from this embarrasing problem and it was the worst Prediction ihad ever did because when i became 12 the wet night returned but this time they are very Stronger than past that forced me to go to a doctor and he Requested some experimentation that showed there is not any medical problem and told me to go to a Psychologist and he told me to set alarms as i did’nt want to have diapers for night i agreed and after 3 month after 1 month dry i unloose to set them but after 2 week it started againg.i should tell you that every time i wet my bed the idea of diapering raised again and i hated to be in diapers as a baby so i set alarm again and this time for 6 month but after that it began another time and this time iwas realy accepted to be diaper but i began to set alarms again and after 4 month the Repetitive story occured and i desided to diaper my self but this time my mom said set them again but i was tired from get up every night so iwent to Pharmacy and said to the cashier what i wanted and she give me a smile that have extremly meaning and bring it in a black bag and i went home i tried to put on of them on and impaired the first one but finally i learned and from that day up to now i am in diapers for night.

  29. April Klich Birmingham Alabama

    I am a Bedwetter. I don’t have many friends due to my bed wetting. This has been a problem for me for 10 years. My mom was a bedwetter and told me she still has a problem. My dad gets angry when he gets wet and has to take a shower. My dad works at KBR in Birmingham, Alabama.

  30. I can certainly relate! My son is 8 and we still have bedwetting challenges on a regular basis. My friend Liz and I created PeapodMats for this very reason. Changing the bedding everyday was the most frustrating for me. I have a great doctor and she just told us to just “chill”, that eventually his brain will speak to his bladder and it will resolve itself. Great advise…but when you are dealing with the day-to-day chaos and this one top of it, it magnifies the problem. But now with our PeapodMat my son feels a little more in control (in an uncontrollable situation) and I’m not frustrated. What is different about our waterproof mat is that it LIES ON TOP of bedding without bunching or slipping. It stays in place, protects his sheets, and when he wets the mat he takes it to the laundry himself (this makes him feel like he has some control over the situation). Please visit our website, we’d love to help! Amanda

    I too wet the bed as a child; it started when I was six we moved to a new house new neighborhood. We moved around a lot for a couple of years I wet every night mom put me I diapers at night till the problem went away about 2 years. The problem didn’t completely go away till I was in middle school years like you.
    Your blog struck a chord I also remember putting a blanket over dry but pee stained sheets so I wouldn’t have to bother mom at bedtime. My wife Shannon and I both had bedwetting in our childhood however our own daughter didn’t although we expected her to.
    We did take in 3 other girls who had issues with wetting their beds two stopped on their own at 12 years old the 3rd our niece who lived with us. Our Niece came to live with us when she was 11 and she wet most nights. We saw an ad for goodnights when they first came out we decided to give it a try worked great left her in goodnights for a couple of years and forgot about it. Best decision ever made not make a big deal about it. When she was 15 she still wet her bed at least once a month so we put an alarm on her bed to train her to wake herself up.
    I think I would try your method of training your bladder if we had another child in our home with the problem of wetting their bed. All three of the girls seemed to have very small bladders even to this day if traveling with one of them you make lots of bathroom stops. I’m same too and I am a very heavy sleeper even now. I have heard that about the girls too.
    Great post thanks for sharing.
    Love your designs too

  32. Sophie Jordan

    I appreciate your effort on sharing these great tips! My son had a problem with wetting his bed every single night for years. We tried everything from diapers, waking him up and even medicine, but nothing helped. Then, with DryBuddyEZ alarm, my son stopped peeing his bed. What is different about this alarm is that the wireless DryBuddy wetness sensor has a unique, patented magnetic attachment system which makes it very easy to attach the sensor to or detach it from any normal clothing worn by my son and cleaning the soiled sensor & making it ready to use again should take less than one minute. It would a pleasure if this would help anyone going through this problem.

  33. There’s a great little video about the possible causes of bedwetting on the Perfect Start Facebook page and I can say first hand that I know the system has worked for my children and a few of their cousins.

    Hope this helps! = )

  34. I wet the bed like until I was in my mid teens. It was almost considered normal in my house. Like I was not punished or anything. In fact it was almost expected. I dont know if that makes sense. I just dont think my parents bothered to toilet train me. I used to wear a nappy and plastic pants (No disposables in those days). There were times when I was really embarrassed by my parents telling someone. Like one time before a sleepover at a friends house my mum told the other kids mum that I was a “wetter”. and that she would send a nappy and plastic pants and a plastic sheet because “sometiems he leaks”. I hated these times but pretty soon I would forget and not even try to be dry.

    I think around 11 or 12 around the end of primary school or the start of high school I think I became more self aware. Self concious. From that time I avoided sleep overs and when I had friends over I would not take them to my room for fear that they would smell the smell or see other evidence like the plastic sheet or the pile of nappies that filled an entire shelf in cupboard. Or the plastic pants that were in a draw. But still it was just considered the norm that I wore a nappy and plastic pants. I would just put them on under my PJs and go to bed. Sometimes even waking in the night needing to pee and just peeing. Other times I would make real effort to get dry and get up and go to the toilet. Maybe I was just lazy and the nappy made it too easy. I also remember continuing to wear a wet nappy and plastic pants while eating breakfast and watching early morning TV.

    I am not sure at what age but certainly by the beginning of high school (12yo) I learned that peeing myself was a stress relief. In that case I recall that I had signed up to learn to play a musical instrument. I knew nothing about music. Could not sing in tune or anything. I was worried sick about it. I recall trying to decide what to do and feeling really wound up about it. I would wake up in the middle of the night worrying and one time I just wet myself. It was so relaxing. Often when I was wetting I would wake up and stem the flow and then get up and go to the toilet so the nappy was not totally soaked. In fact the rule was one nappy per night. If it was wet I was supposed to keep it on. In this case I just let it flow and I recall it being so relaxing.

    Around 15 I decided that I had to stop wearing them. I had just not worn them on occasions in the past and usually within a week or two, had an accident. I would hate it. Waking up wet all over. It would seep up to my neck and down to my knees. Mum would complain about extra washing and I would just decide it was easier to wear the nappy. By the time I was 16 I was dry each night and not wearing a nappy but it was a real effort on my part. I kept the plastic sheet on the bed. Maybe as a security blanket. I dunno really. It was not until a girl friend commented on it when I was in my early 20s that that I got rid of it.

    After high school I went to university. I really enjoyed this but at exams I would get worried sick. Literally. On several occasions, as I drove to the exams, I would stop the car, get out and vomit in the gutter. I took to wearing the nappy and plastic pants to exams and anywhere where I was likely to get stressed and if I felt that feeling of panic or fear sickness coming on I would just pee. Disgusting isn’t it. I no longer wet the bed but would wear them to these stressful events.

    So I live with this tension. I know it’s socially unacceptable but at the same time a security mechanism. A safety thing. Actually one of the things I struggle with too is that they are sort of addictive. If I wear a adult diaper for a day or so and then not wear it, I feel a heightened sense of anxiety. Similarly, if I am going out to some event or other then I will almost automatically put one on.

  35. Thanks for sharing this. I love your blog! We have some experience with bedwetting, it actually runs in families more often than not, and so we have dealt with subsequent generations. We reviewed alot of solutions including diapers and medication (which we decided against) but the thing that worked for both kids and a teenager cousin was cognitive behavior therapy combined with a bedwetting alarm. We used the Bedwetting TheraPee and couldn’t have been happier.
    I hope this helps some other parents out there!

  36. My daughter was a bit of a bed wetter, not as much as you describe, but occasionally. When I asked the doctor about it at a check up she said that it is often related to constipation. More poop inside, less room for pee. More fruit and veggies, plus a stool softener seem to have helped.
    (Since we are being completely open)

  37. I was so surprised to see this posted again! I had commented back then about my 6 1/2 year old being a bet-wetter. I had been a bed-wetter as a child, and grown out of it.

    As of today, he is still a bed-wetter, but things have improved. He had never had a dry night until he was 8 years old. He had outgrown pull-ups, and traditional waking at night for bathroom hadn’t worked. So, we went to a pediatric urologist, who prescribed a bed-wetting alarm.

    It worked like a dream – he was dry within a few weeks. And, he stayed dry for about 6 months. And, started wetting again. We have now gone through about 4 of these cycles – dry for a few months, then wetting again, use of alarm, and then dry again for a few months.

    Our son is now 10 years old. We are still working with a pediatric urologist. We might move to medications. Part of the problem might be that he’s a deep sleeper. It’s made it really hard for him to do camp outs and sleep overs. It’s not gone yet, but it has definitely improved.

  38. Pingback: Other Helpful Blogs – The Bedwetting Traveller

  39. There is lots of useful information here both in the blog and the comments. To make a long story short there is a history if bedwetting on both sides of the family and there are a few kids that now still wet their beds. All three of ours girls 5 and 9 and a boy 7 all wet nightly. We will begin with an alarm system during the summer vacation with our oldest and try it on all three if time permits. I would rather not use it on school nights as it will disturb their sleep.
    So at this time all three are wearing cloth diapers and plastic pants to bed. Doing this allows them to get a full nights sleep without disruption. I also read a study that said that bedwetters in diapers sleep just as well and long as non bedwetting children.

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