Your child wakes up in the middle of the night and starts crying. The reason is not a sickness nor a bad dream but a wet blanket - the child had wet the bed. It can happen and it’s normal, but wetting the bed in kids older than five is a sign of a more serious problem.
Wetting the bed in older kids
Facts are clear - 15% of five year olds wet their beds. There are various factors behind it, such as wrong drinking of water schedule or irregular sleeping schedule. Kids need schedule and regularity, even for going to the toilet. Therefore, it is necessary to teach the childlren to go pee regularly every 2-3 hours even if they don’t feel the need. You can fight wetting the bed by regular visits to the toilet before bed and right after getting up.
Even stress can affect bedwetting in children. It can appear after a change of schedule such as starting to attend kindergarden or school or being in a different environment such as camp, school in nature or holidays.
Among myths about bed wetting belongs the untrue information that it is mainly in children with psychological issues. The truth is that it bothers all children without any connection to it’s psychological wellbeing, although it applies that children with development issues are more prone to bed wetting. Genetics also plays a role and so the children of parents that wet their beds are more prone.
Why does my child wet the bed?
Are you also asking why is your child wetting the bed, despite a regular schedule, no psychological issues and no genetics predisposition?
The usual reasons are developmental issues caused by underdeveloped central nervous systems and the bladder. Some children simply don’t get the signal while sleeping that it is time to pee. It goes away with time and development of the brain.
What if your five year old child is right before school and you have eliminated all the upper-mentioned options? In that case there might be other health issues, which you shouldn’t neglect. Often it is inflammation of the bladder or another infection, but other more serious causes can be a tumour or diabetes.
The statistics say that in Slovakia there are approximately 40 000 children that are five years old or older bothered by bed wetting and without the help of a doctor only 1 or 2 out of ten will get better. The undiagnosed kids get expelled from their social groups and are scared to sleep outside of home and are ashamed of their problem. And the parents that punish kids for the wet blanket even worsen the situation and their loneliness.
Remember that night enuresis, as bedwetting is called, is treatable and it’s just necessary to overcome the shame and look for a specialist for help.