What's the best way to get your boy to stop peeing the bed?

Jenna - posted on 12/20/2009 ( 17 moms have responded )

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Micah is 3 1/2 years old, and tho there's many mornings that he'll wake up dry, its SO frustrating when I have to strip the bed, wash clothes and sheets and blankets several days in a row! And I've been told that bedwetting is hereditary, so that's really discouraging because a few extended fam members didn't stop peeing in the bed until they were like, 8. I don't wanna go thru that! Any advice, please?!?

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Annette - posted on 12/22/2009

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My advice is actually going to differ quite drastically from others here. First of all I had I son who wet almost every night until he was close on 10 and a daughter who experienced the same thing until she was almost 9. My cousin had three sons who all wet each night until their early teens.. So I totally understand the frustration and anxiety plus work involved with this issue!
We tried almost all the advice given below and to no avail! Finally after my cousin managed to get an appointment with some urologist specialist...it can take a long time to get in over here in NZ..... he gave her the following advice and we both found our "miracle" answer. It didn't change things over night but as a process it cured the issue in a short amount of time.
His advice was as follows: ..... by restricting their intake of fluids and getting the children up at night to relief themselves (tiring for both parent and child)..... give them lots of fluid from about 4-5pm onwards (or at least 4 hours before bedtime) then they must wait until the bladder is completely full before being allowed to release it (eg like when you have to fill your bladder for an scan....or used to). Do not allow them to go before their bladder is really really full. And if they can hold off until just before bedtime so much the better.... though if they are truly uncomfortable do not force them to hold on longer than necessary (don't want infections happening).
The theory behind this way of working with bed wetting is that when we restrict fluids or try to get them to relieve their bladders frequently we are actually enhancing the problem but cause their bladders to shrink and not be able to hold much before they release it. By filling up the bladder and not allowing release until it is truly full we train the bladder to stretch, expand and hold a larger amount of fluid before release is necessary......... result: a child with a bladder that can make it through a night without having to go to the bathroom before the morning or at least learns to control it more.
It may sound crazy but honestly with in a couple of weeks both my cousin and I had (between us) 5 dry beds every nights and much happier children. An occasional/rare night accident happened over the first month thereafter but it was very rare and as the bladders continued to relearn the bed wetting became a thing of the distant past.

Stina - posted on 12/20/2009

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bedwetting is hereditary. Check out dr. sears' website. I went through the same frustration with my son until I did some research and found out that given two parents who remember wetting beds as children- occasionally in grade school- our children have a 3/4 chance of being bed wetters.

We stopped trying to 'teach' our son to stay dry at night several months ago and got him "night time" pants. He's beginning to want to stop wearing them so we tell him that as soon as he is dry for a week he can stop wearing them at night. Aside from that we don't make a big deal about it any more and it's far less stressful. My son is 5. Because he is wanting to stop with the pullups at night we are going in next month to the dr. and we'll talk to her about it- I know there is a medicine that can help. But I generally like to avoid medicine so we'll see.

Eventually, your son and his bladder and all that needs to be developed to prevent night wettings will mature and he'll stop. Untill then, put a plastic cover on the mattress- mine came from Walmart for about $8. And let him wear pullups at night. He's not doing it on purpose and probably wishes he didn't. The pullups really save on the frustration of extra laundry.

Rebekah - posted on 12/22/2009

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I had a bed wetting problem until I was 8. My mom would reward me by buying me something I really wanted if I went for a certain amount of time w/o wetting the bed (I don't remember the amount of time).The reward I remember was a cute umbrella I really wanted.(which obviously wasn't over the top expensive). There are also pull up type things for older kids for at night. Maybe you could try that too.

Kat - posted on 12/20/2009

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I am not an expert on this subject but I do remember having a very interesting conversation with a primary school teacher once. She told me that with boys specifically that they will not go through the night dry until a particular hormone is released in their body as part of their development. So no matter what amount of training & effort you have put in if this hormone has not been released it won't happen. She told me of some 12 year old boys that it had been a problem with on school camp over the years. Do some research and see what you can find out.
I do also know that it is hereditary.
I have bought this bed sheet from an online shop called "Mummy's Little Helpers". It can apparently carry up to 2 Litres of fluid. It goes on top of the sheets not under. So all than needs changing is this bed sheet. It feels like a sheet on top so it is comfortable to lay on. It could help save you having to change the whole bed each time.

Amanda - posted on 12/20/2009

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my son just turned 5yrs old in nov and he is still having problems with bed wetting. i have found that getting him up atleast once a night to go to the bathroom and limiting his drink intake that night does help but does not cure the problem. time is the best thing we have.

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Diane - posted on 12/29/2009

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pullups! My 2 sons are 10 and are still peeing the bed there are a few things like greatly reducing the amount of fluids after 7:00 in the evening. getting him up before you go to bed to go to the bathroom. making sure he goes to the bathroom before he goes to bed. hope some of these suggestions work. Unfortunately some kids have this problem until they are 10 or 11. Believe me I have asked the drs.

Linda - posted on 12/29/2009

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Out of my four boys, two were wet at night until around age 9 or 10. (The others were dry at night as soon as they were toilet trained.) We tried buzzers, getting them up at night...didn't work for us....but really the least stressful thing to do is use the Goodnites (Thank GOD for them!) and not worry about it. I did have them checked at the doctor first to see if anything physically was wrong. Some kids just don't have the ability to control their bladder muscles until they are older, and it is hereditary. The advice on stretching their bladder might work and could be worth a try, but if not, don't sweat it. One day they will be dry, and then you can rejoice!

Jeanette - posted on 12/27/2009

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My 5 year old used goodnites until I think he was 4. He is a heavy sleeper. When I was pregnant and I had to go to the bathroom at 4 in the morning, I would wake him up too. Now he doesn't use the goodnites but once in awhile he can have an accident. He hasn't had one maybe in a couple of months. I also have a 3 year old too. He is a light sleeper. He will wake up to go in the middle of the night if needed. They aren't allowed to have a lot of liquids after dinner. If they do, for sure they will wet their bed. I think everyone is different. So, far what we are doing is working. Good Luck!!! I think 3.5 is still young to not have any accidents.

Kristy - posted on 12/24/2009

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He will stop when he can. No child wants to pee in the bed. He can't help it. My son did not stop until he was about 8. The just used night pants (pull-ups) until he stopped so that I did not have to wash sheets everyday. Eventually he will stop. Be patient.

Teresa - posted on 12/23/2009

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My 6-year old son wears GoodNites to bed. I believe bedwetting is hereditary. It could also be a physical reason, such as urinary tract infection or etc. that should be ruled out by seeing a physician.

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IMO it's a developmental thing. There are things you can do to help (like waking him to pee before you go to bed and limiting his evening drinks), but it won't happen til he's ready.



My girls were in pull ups at night til they were 4.5 and would still wet the bed on occasion. Now (at 8) they don't wet the bed, but do start to wet their pants while they are sleeping. I'm actually going to talk to their ped about it next month when they get in for their 8 year well child check up...

Alisha - posted on 12/22/2009

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wellI am still fighting the battle and i have three boys one wet the bed until 14 and he just stopped .. I took him to the doctors and he was diagnosed with a small blatter issue so relly nothing helps with that maybe lots of prayer ... also he was a heavy sleeper that made it hard .. so we are moving on to the 7 year old he is also a heavy sleeper I changed his sleeeping arrangements making it easier to get to the bathroom a night light so on so forth bottom bunk instead of the top. stopped liquids after 6 and suggestions i haven't tried was on the interenet they have a alarm system that hooks to the childs underpants and goes off any time it senses moisture it trains there brain to wake up before the alarm at any sense of moisture. we have the mattress protectors which we get at wallmart for 5 dollars and the 7 year lod and 6 year old are learning how to clean up after them selves still hit and miss but better than every night...any other suggestions you get please pass this way..alisha

Norma - posted on 12/21/2009

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From my past experience, I came to understand that little boy's bladders can be small and take more time to develop/grow (as the child grows) causing the child to be unable to hold large amounts of urine for a longer period of time (like nite 8hrs while sleeping). I'd suggest to talk with your pediatrician. It is only temporary and will end.

Heather - posted on 12/21/2009

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We don't let our kids drink anything before bed. Until they were 5 the boys didn't drink anything after 6 pm. And now that they are 7 and 5 they can have drinks up until 7, but nothing after that. It really does help! We haven't had an accident at night time for almost 2 years.

Donna - posted on 12/20/2009

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I use to wash sheet every other day. My daughter was 7-8 years old when she stop bedwetting. I had to get up in the middle of the night to take her to the bathroom. I had to get up every 2 hours.

Kerryn - posted on 12/20/2009

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It is worth eliminating other problems that can cause bed-wetting. My daughter had large tonsils that caused sleep apnoea. It was only a few weeks after her tonsils were removed before she was dry at night.

Tina - posted on 12/20/2009

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My son who is 10 didn't stop until he was 7.5 yrs. It is true it is hereditary (and he sleeps like a rock). We tried everything from star charts to bed alarm. None of it worked completely. So we just started putting him in Goodnites (he called them his depends) and just road the wave until he was done with that time. My daughter is now going through it and I am not going to waste my time with alternatives. We just do nite time pull ups.

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