Still wetting the bed? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 04-25-2003, 03:34 PM - Thread Starter
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My 11 year old stepson just recently moved in w/ DH and myself,and he apparently still wets the bed.Now I dont know much about this-I never had this problem,nor did dh,but what causes this?I feel bad because we dont give him anything to drink after like 8:30,and wake him up at least once in the night to go pee,but I feel that it may be embarrassing for him.Are there anysuggestions,or just keep doig what we are doing?Is him still wetting the bed at an older age going to cause any kind of physical/psychological bproblems in the future?
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#2 of 9 Old 04-25-2003, 04:02 PM
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Could be from a dairy allergy. Try eliminating dairy for a while and see if there is any difference.
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#3 of 9 Old 04-25-2003, 04:08 PM
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At eleven, I'd consult a medical professional. There are some medical reasons why an 11 yr old would still wet the bed, and it would be good to rule those out first. If there's no medical reason, I'd suggest counseling - I'm not sure what this kid's life was like before living with you, but perhaps there's been a lot of turmoil in his life?

In the meantime, limited drinks and waking him sound like they would be really embarrassing for an 11 yr old. My daughter would be really embarrassed. Maybe you could buy some of those large-size pull-ups and just casually mention that they're in his closet, if he wants to use them... I'd think of this as a short-term problem, and for a short while that seems reasonable.


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#4 of 9 Old 04-27-2003, 04:21 PM
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I don't think waking him is embarrassing. It is better than waking ashamed in a puddle. I think the diaper pants are more embarrassing. Maybe you could discuss this with him in a problem-solving, non-judgmental way and suggest that he set an alarm for himself (say, waking up every three hours).

Don't know what the current medical thinking is, but twentyfive years ago problems like this were either totally ignored or had lots of invasive diagnostics thrown at 'em. Both were the wrong response, imo.

Whatever else is/was going on, I think the best thing is that he learn to recognize the urge when he is asleep and wake up. I still get up once or twice during the night. Not that there is no psych. component, but I think it is fine to tackle the practical side first.
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#5 of 9 Old 05-09-2003, 03:39 AM
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I hear that restricting fluids can backfire - that it's a good idea to let them drink as much as they want, but to restrict citrus.

I wet the bed almost daily until I was 10, and had intermittent accidents till I was 14. I think it was about emotional stress - when the stress went away, the bedwetting stopped.

I remember my mom was really shameful about it from the time I was 4 - punishments, being forced to wear diapers, having my bed sold and being made to sleep on the floor (dumb, because I'd just pee on the carpet!) etc. - and when I went to go live with my dad when I was 10, he just said "Well, if you stop for a week I'll buy you a flashlight." That was it! I stopped and stayed stopped except for those few accidents over the next 4 years. I think what helped is having someone not make such a big deal over it.

When put in perspective, it's not a big deal - I mean, I had my own room, a rubber mattress cover, and would just wash the sheets every morning. Somehow, it only happened twice while on sleepovers.

I did read about a guy who wet until he was 25, and he had an abnormally small bladder.
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#6 of 9 Old 05-12-2003, 11:49 PM
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My son just stopped peeingthe bed maybe a year ago, whew
WHAT A RELIEF! He wa s like 9-10
His dad said that he had wet the bed till then too and to give it time, it realy sucked because he is especially emotionally needy and liked to sleep with me, but anyways, in doing a bit of research I noted that there really does exist some sort of issue with the spleen releasing a harmone or something that makes the bladder emty itself, but that is not neccessarily what is causing the peeing in YOUR son's bed, actually I think there could be several medical possibilities and the rest would be psychologicaly based like stressors and so forth,
There is a homeopathic bedwetting pill out too, didnt work for us tho-
My sisters son also peed at bed time till about 10, he wore pull ups- My son preferred to get up at night, but when really tired or wanted to sleep with me, he would wear the overnight (cloth alternative to pull-ups) diaper, I personally think the big diaper mustve sucked for him but a pull up, if you believe in them -seems do able to me,
good luck. Medical advice might be helpful, ask your son, allow him to be part of the solution. This is a lesson, in something, May your son be empowered with solutions and love
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#7 of 9 Old 05-13-2003, 02:34 AM
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We've dealt with this. Wetting the bed is actually not uncommon for older kids. In our case, we were dealing with "delayed maturation," which was affecting the sleep cycle. The urologist suggested it would simply have to be outgrown. For some kids it takes until they are in their late teens or early twenties. Of course, every case is different (there are lots of different causes), so its always good to have potential causes ruled out. If this is a newly occuring thing, I'd be especially concerned about checking with a doctor.

We aren't fond of limiting drinks, at least not to an extreme. After 8:30 doesn't sound too bad though. Limiting caffeine seems to help. Some docs suggest a drug called DDAVP. We aren't familiar with homeopathic or herbal remedies. There is a store called "The Bedwetting Store," which has catalogs and might even be available online, and they have wet-activited-alarms and stuff that may or may not work (self-motivation is key). One doc cautioned us, though, that bipolar kids should not have their sleep cycle interrupted. A plastic sheet and then an absorbant pad over that can go under the regular sheets to save the mattress. Incentives for not wetting the bed, even if the problem is determined to be pyscholgical, are not a great idea...they assume the kid has some degree of control. Very rare that the kid actually would.

As others have mentioned, kids usually have pretty strong opinions about what they think is most embarassing-- having to wake up in the middle of the night, wearing pull-up type protection, or waking up in a puddle. If it were me, personally I'd prefer someone wake me up to go to the bathroom (like you are doing now, as tiring as it may be for you), or I'd want to wear an alarm that'd help me wake up. Everyone has different preferences though.

I think the key is to reaffirm for kids that this is so common that there is actually a store that just sells supplies to help with it ("The Bedwetting Store"). Try not to pathologize it, and work on this as a team with your step-son. Sounds like you are doing great so far! Good luck!

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#8 of 9 Old 05-13-2003, 09:40 AM
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This is really embarassing to admit but I wet the bed occasionally a few times through my preteen and teen years and also a handful of times in my adult life. It hasn't happened in a long time thank goodness. Anyhow, I remember that every time it happened I was dreaming of the toilet. It wasn't that I had any kind of illness or stress or anything like that. I was just dreaming of sitting on the toilet and of course my body did what it does on the toilet. I would have never told my mother or anyone else about this though EVER. No doubt it is something that is very embarassing to him and he doesn't feel comfortable discussing. I still drink up until bedtime and don't use the bathroom in the night unless I wake up for some reason.
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#9 of 9 Old 05-13-2003, 07:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the advice guys! We havent figured out the root of it,but it basically has stopped.I guess it was something that he has had a problem w/ for quite a while. Aparently his mother had this problem until she was like 15,so it is probablly a combonation of gentics,and emotional problems. He had some rough times before he came to live w/ dh and myself. Who knows...but its slowly resolving itself,and if it does continue further we will most likely take him to a doc,but I dont think it'll be neccassary.Anyways,thanks again!!
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