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Bed Wetting in Children: What Causes a Child to Wet the Bed?

Bed wetting in children is a common problem that families everywhere face on a regular basis.  But this doesn’t mean that it is any less upsetting, confusing or embarrassing to your child struggling with it.  In order to help your child through their bed wetting, you need to understand what causes bed wetting in children.

Bed wetting in children is a result of lacking bladder control.  This occurs most often in children up to age 4, but is normally under control by ages 5 or 6.  There are two types of bed wetting: primary and secondary.  

A primary bed wetter is a child who has been wetting the bed continuously since an early age.  

A secondary bed wetter is a child who has not had an issue with bed wetting for a period of time, but begins to have problems out-of-the-blue.

Causes of Primary Bed Wetting in Children

There are a number of reasons primary bed wetting occurs, including the following:

  • Small bladder.
  • An under-developed nervous system (the child’s system may still be forming; this results in them being unaware of their bladder being full).
  • Deep sleep, meaning the child sleeps so deeply that they don’t wake up when they need to urinate.
  • The child doesn’t use the bathroom as much as needed during the day, resulting in a fuller bladder at night.

Causes of Secondary Bed Wetting in Children

Secondary bed wetting can occur when:

  • There is an actual undetected medical condition, such as a urinary tract infection or diabetes.
  • There is an abnormality in the neurological or other structural system.  This can result from injury, disease, etc.
  • Sometimes the child is internalizing emotional or stressful situations, such as dramatic changes in their home environment or something similar.

Hereditary factors may also be a contributor to bed wetting in children.  If one or both of the parents had bed wetting problems as children, the odds are more likely that the child will struggle a similar.  In this case the children often learn to stop bed-wetting on their own around the same age as when their parents stopped.

When dealing with bed wetting and your child, being understanding and sympathetic can go a long way. Show patience and love as this is often a developmental issue and not a behavioral issue.  Reassure your child that you’ll help them through this. Build their confidence that as their bodies continue to develop, they will gain greater control.  

Hopefully this article helps better equip you to help your child through this stage and in the end, you both will be more successful in overcoming your child’s bed wetting.

At Nytone, we invented and patented the first bed wetting alarms to stop bed wetting in children. It’s no wonder we find that more parents love Nytone for solving bed wetting in their children.

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