How To Help Coughing Baby Sleep
Bed Wetting (Enuresis)
Bed wetting can make you feel very frustrated and angry, but it is important that you don’t direct this at your child. If your child feels embarrassed or ashamed of his bed wetting, these feelings may become a longer lasting and more damaging experience than the bed wetting in itself will ever be.
Bed wetting at night may become a problem for you when your child continues to wet at night after all his contemporaries have become dry. If it continues it may become a problem for him because you may not feel able to allow him to stay away over night with friends.
Naomi was out of nappies in the day early on. And at three-and-a-half was out of nappies at night. But right up until Christmas last year when she was seven, she had wet beds four or five times a week. She was quite unconcerned about it and even happy to tell her peers that she wet. From our point of view it wasn’t a problem When she was little we used to lift her for a wee, but we stopped doing that as she got bigger. The school nurse asked me if it was still a problem for us and I said, “Well, it’s not a problem because we have a washing machine.” Since Christmas she’s only wet four times, so it obviously wasn’t a mechanical problem.’
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Sometimes your child will start bed wetting again after being dry. Sometimes this happens when he feels under stress. A house move, the birth of a new baby, the death of a relative or a new school can all be stressful. If you can help him to talk about his worries, the bed wetting may fade away.
Most children are dry by four-and-a-half years old, but some, especially children with a mental or physical disability, take longer, and the most seriously disabled never learn. Your GP will treat it as a problem only when your child is five years old or more.
Ask your GP to check your child of over five years for physical problems which may cause his bed wetting (physical causes are often the culprit when your child has been dry for a few months and then begins to wet again). Physical causes may include urinary infections, diabetes, allergies or sleep apnoea (breathing pauses).
Once you have ruled out physical problems, you could try a behavioural approach. Use a star chart to reward your child for every dry night (see page 126 for details of how to use one). Continue with the star chart until your child has two months of dry nights with only the occasional accident. You can use the star chart alone or in combination with a programme in which you train your child to wait for longer before he urinates.