bed wetting at age 12

Lisa - posted on 03/25/2010 ( 15 moms have responded )

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is it normal for a child to still have occasional bed wetting at this age....it horrifies my son and i feel horrible for him. he wants to go hang out spend nights w friends and he is always terrified that it will happen and so he dont is there something i can do to help w this plz help

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Claire - posted on 07/06/2013

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Well, I have done it ALL to help my 12 year old. I am a therapist and I work with this stuff frequently. My dgtr is on DDAVP, which seemed to work at first, but now only works sporadically. Behavioral modification doesn't work (according to my experience and the research). Honestly, it wouldn't bother me as much if she didn't have a horrible attitude about it. She will lay in her own urine until you tell her to get up and take it to the washer. Then, she makes excuses about doing that. She will say, "I couldn't turn it (the washer) on because there was a bug down there!" She talks back and acts helpless. I mean, what is going to happen when she starts menstruating? Blood and urine in the bed? C'mon , now! Please help...
P.S. Sorry, but I am so frustrated because she also has severe ADHD.

Claire - posted on 01/25/2014

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This is Christine. Please let me add this to my first post: I am so glad it was seen as being helpful. I try my best not to be bitter/angry because it's bad for one's physical and emotional health. Secondly, my 12 year old dgtr is a stepdgtr. So, I have VERY limited control over what can be done about her issues, and bedwetting is just one of them. She has been wetting the bed to varying degrees since she was "potty trained." The DDAVP was only working sporadically because I found out her mother was not giving it to her, nor was she giving her the ADHD meds the high-priced and very competent psychiatrist was prescribing. She is nearing 13 and she is still wetting herself. Too sad...

IF YOU ARE THE BIOLOGICAL MOTHER WITH CUSTODY OF THE CHILD, here is what I would suggest:

If the child is between ages 4-6 years of age: have those Goodnight plastic sheets that cover the entire bed and place your child in a pull-up. Talk with the pediatrician about teaching the child to clean-up in the morning positively, bed-wetting alarms, their health (to make sure it's not due to a general medical condition), read books and explain that the kid cannot control this because their bladder has not grown large enough or their hormones that wake you up at night are not present in their bodies yet, and make sure all caregivers are on the same page. This time period is critical in a child's psychological formation, so shaming and punishment will only cause damage to your child and possibly make the problem more complicated.

If the child is between the ages of 6-12: you may want to continue with the Goodnight plastic sheet, pull-ups, etc. However, they are at the age where they begin to have sleep-overs with friends. This presents a problem for you and the child. They may refuse to go because they are embarrassed and WILL be "found out" because by this age, most children do not wet the bed anymore. Now is the time to discuss medication with your pediatrician (usually DDAVP), request that he/she do diagnostics on their bladder/surrounding organs to make sure there are no obstructions or other issues impacting the child's ability to stay dry at night, and talk with the child firmly, but gently about how to clean their clothes/bed items in the washer, and remain calm/supportive at all costs because the child is looking to you for your reactions. I am not saying to PRAISE them for wetting the bed (lol). I am saying to treat it as if your child had a medical issue. You wouldn't scold a child if they had persistent ear infections, right?

I am a psychotherapist and have worked with kids with these issues. Most of them were foster children and had been traumatized. If this is the case, you may want to consider taking your child to see a therapist. Make sure they know it's not because there is something "wrong" with them. Tell them they are a good kid and you want to do everything you can to keep them that way. (It may sound like I'm a tree hugger, but love and patience is truly the answer). That in no way means you won't get angry or frustrated! Call a trustworthy friend or family member and vent to them, give yourself a time-out and take a hot bath, listen to your favorite music, punch a pillow, etc. You're human an these things are difficult. Parenting, if you're doing a decent job, IS the hardest job in the world. So, take good care of yourself and your loved ones.

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Holly - posted on 03/22/2014

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My son is 12 years old. He has wet the bed for as long as I know. I've taken him to specialist and they say he his constipated. However, I do not feel that is the case. He is on a regular scheduled when it comes to that and they told him to take miralax. That did not work, and when he was younger they prescribed him a anti depressant which they specialist took him off of . He uses the bathroom every night before bed at 9:30pm and we cut off liquids at 8pm. But he continues to wet the bed every night. Sometimes 2 times in night. I am at a loss and not sure what to do. My son and I work together on this an he is no longer embarrassed to talk about it. But I feel there is something more behind this than being constipated. Nothing traumatic has happened to him. He is a very healthy and athletic kid.

Megan - posted on 12/29/2012

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Hi! I remember so well how frustrating and helpless I felt to help my son stop wetting the bed. He wet every single night until he was 8 years old. At first I just got several pairs of washable waterproof underwear and I kept a no big deal attitude. When he reached age 8 the bedwetting began to lower his self esteem. He worried that his friends would find out and he wanted to go to sleepovers. So I talked with him about using a bedwetting alarm and we read the book Prince Bravery and Grace-Attack of the Wet Knights. He wanted to try the alarm. I purchased the malem with alarm and vibration. He slept right through it at first -which is typical of a child who wets at night. So I would wake him. Sometimes several times in one night. But gradually he began to awake by himself. And in less than three months he went from wet every single night to dry every single night. I found a lot of positive information about bedwetting and alarm use at www.braveryandgrace.com
Good luck and God Bless!

Also, I found the alarms and waterproof mattress pads and waterproof undies at this webstore:
http://astore.amazon.com/bravandgrac-20?...
I truly recommend trying to help school age children end nightly bedwetting by using bedwetting alarm therapy.
hope it helps!

Nikki - posted on 12/27/2012

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It's my daughter that wets the bed she has never worn underware to bed ever always a goodnight she is wearing 2 goodnights to bed now and soaks through one of them and her pjs and bed she sleeps so soundly nothing wakes her any ideas

Nikki - posted on 12/27/2012

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It's my daughter that wets the bed she has never worn underware to bed ever always a goodnight she is wearing 2 goodnights to bed now and soaks through one of them and her pjs and bed she sleeps so soundly nothing wakes her any ideas

Renee - posted on 04/03/2010

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Lisa I suffer with the same problem But i am a 28 year old woman that sit wets the bed
:( it sucks. I was always scared that my friends would make fun of me or say something about it. There are some things that he could try to do that could help him.

1. stop drinking about 2 hours before bed
2. go bathroom before he gose to sleep.

. there are some underpants that they have that you can get at drug stor that not marked so no one know what they are and he will be the only one to see them. I Know its not easy to go though what he is going though. I have kidney reflex and they told me that i would grow out of it but never did.. I hope he gets to grow out of it unlike me.

Heather - posted on 04/02/2010

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i have cousins that did it until they were 18 and 13. the other one is still doing it at 10

Cindy - posted on 03/28/2010

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Children can continue to wet the bed for a long time. Dont make him feel bad about it. You can get night pants for him to wear to go to a friends house and no one will ever know..Only time can cure your problem. Make sure he does not drink pop or caffine,. And make sure he doesnot drink close to bed time. Have him go to the bathrooom before bed .. even if he does not feel like he needs to go..
You can get alarms to put on him if he starts to pee during the night.. but i wont go to that drastic of a measure.. Just dont worry.. Do see your dr to make sure he is ok.

SarahJane - posted on 03/28/2010

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I am a counselor with severly emotionally disturbed youth, and I do recommend seeing a doctor to assess if DDAVP is needed. Another possible and scarier opiton is if the child is reacting to some sort of traumatic event... such as a medical, sexual, physical, domestic violence... ect. I hope its medical and not the latter.

Tia - posted on 03/27/2010

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First establish that it is bed wetting and not wet dreams. If indeed it is bed wetting, cut soda out of his diet completly, and no drinks after 7pm. This allows his bladder to empty completly by 10 or 11. You can encourage him to wear a watch on sleepovers that has an alarm. Set it for around 2 or 3 am to remind him to get up and try to use the restroom. This should allow him the best opportunity to not wet the bed. He can also take his own sleeping bag (water resistant on the outside) this way if he has an accident it is in his bag and hidden from anyone else. If the problem continues definitely check with his doctor.

Jean - posted on 03/27/2010

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Some children sleep so soundly that they don't sense that they need to go to the bathroom. You can ask your pediatrician about this as there are options that could help your son. One is a prescription called DDAVP that is used by some diabetics to control bladder problems and they also give this to kids with ADHD thst tske meds to sleep and have this same problem. Let me know what the doctor says. There is also Good Nights he could wear or maybe a pad that wakes him up when it senses any wetness on it. Good Luck P.S. Also have him not drink after 7 P.M.

Michelle - posted on 03/27/2010

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don't let him drink anything right before he goes to bed,an if he does make sure he goes pee right before bed. don't let him get too cold. it should be fine. this happened to me til 12 also. that's how i started controling mine. if this doesn't work talk to a doctor. but it may take a few months for his bladder an all that to adjust.

Margaret - posted on 03/26/2010

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I feel for you I have a cousin that bed wetted till she was in her 20;s...till she went overseas. I think it is a confidence thing when it gets to that age.

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