Bedwetting is a learning process that everyone goes through and your mum and dad know that you are not doing it on purpose. Even if you feel bad about wetting your bed, remember your parents love you very much and if you want to it’s ok to talk to them about how you feel. The best news is that your bed wetting will probably go away just as quickly as it came.
How many kids wet the bed?
You might be a little surprised, but did you know that one out of every ten kids aged 5-10 wets their bed. That’s alot of your friends from the school playground. Most kids don’t tell their friends, so it’s easy to feel kind of alone, like you might be the only one in the whole world who wets the bed. But the truth is lots of kids do. If you’ve been on a sleepover with friends, someone else there is probably bedwetting too.
If you’re going on a school camp, there will definitely be other children there who feel just the same as you. You would never guess that 3 other kids in your class is probably bedwetting or that there are over 150,000 children in Australia and New Zealand with the same problem. If you put them all together they would make up over 9,000 soccer teams!
Bedwetting is much more common among boys than girls, about 7 in every 10 kids who wet the bed are boys. Let’s look at the number of children bedwetting in each class of 30 kids. In Infants and Primary School there are:
- At least five kids in Kindy – age 5 (that’s around 16.6%)
- About 2 kids in every Second year class – age 7 (that’s around 6.6%)
- One or two kids in every Fifth year class – age 10 (that’s around 6.6%)
The great news is that about 97% of children who wet the bed will be dry by the time they’re 12 years old and nearly 98% of children are dry by the time they reach high school. Often the best cure for bedwetting is simply time. Hang in there, we know how frustrating that can be, so this website will help you to learn some tips on how to cope with bedwetting until your body and brain are ready to respond.
What happens to your body at night?
In your body there are two small parts called kidneys. All the blood in your body goes through the kidneys and they take out everything that your body needs to be healthy and then turns the bad stuff inside your body into wee. At night when you go to sleep, your brain makes a special chemical that tells your kidneys to slow down and stop making too much wee.
After the urine, or wee, leaves your kidneys, it passes into a round container called the bladder. The bladder is made out of muscles that stretch like a balloon and this is the place that holds all of the urine until you feel like you need to go to the toilet. At night the full bladder is supposed to send a message to the brain to wake you up to go to the toilet.
When you wee, it travels through the urethra which is like a pipe. When your brain doesn’t get the signal to wake up then you might wet the bed. Sounds complicated? Well it is! There are a few common reasons why some kids suffer from bedwetting. Check them out in the information below.
Why do some kids wet the bed?
Lots of children ask the question “Why does bedwetting happen to ME?” It’s a tough one to answer and something that a lot of study has gone into. Take a look at some of the common causes for kids wetting the bed.
A Bladder that doesn’t stretch
Some children can wet the bed because their bladder doesn’t stretch and hold much wee during the day, so at night their bladder gets too full and needs to empty. It hasn’t learnt to stretch and hold more wee. The good news is that with some treatment (training your bladder to be nice and strong) your body can learn to really stretch the bladder so it will hold enough wee to sleep the whole night and you won’t have to get up at all.
Just like you got your Dad’s long legs or your Aunt Sarah’s long lashes – you just might have inherited bedwetting from someone in your family! If dad wet the bed when he was a kid, you’ve got a good chance of wetting the bed (around 43%). If both your Mum and Dad wet the bed as children then your chances go up to 77%. Sometimes families don’t talk much about this but rest assured they grew out of it – and you will too.
Connecting your bladder and brain
Everything you do is controlled by your brain, even when you’re asleep. When your bladder fills up during the night it should send a signal to your brain to say it’s full and then wake you up to go to the toilet. In some children, the signal from the bladder to the brain is very weak and you just don’t wake up. This signal usually gets stronger as you get older.
At night the brain makes a special chemical called an anti-diuretic hormone (ADH for short). This special hormone has the job of slowing down the production of wee in your kidneys. The brain is pretty clever and knows that it’s more important for you to get a good night sleep rather than going to toilet as many times as you would during the day. Some kids’ brains just don’t make enough of the special hormone so their body keeps making as much wee as during the day, and you probably go to the toilet lots of times during the day. If you have this same thing happening you will need to go to the toilet lots of times at night too, but it’s ok because this usually fixes itself with time. By using DryNites® Pyjama Pants you can go to sleep without worrying about waking up in a wet bed, it’s only for a little while but it might make you feel better.
What can I do to stop bedwetting?
There is no complete cure for bedwetting but there are a few things you can do to wet your bed less and not as often:
- Don’t have a lot to drink right before you go to sleep and if you do have something to drink make sure it’s not something too sweet like coke
- If you really don’t want to wet the bed, get your mum or dad to wake you during the night to go to the loo, this won’t cure your bedwetting but it may help to stop you wetting the bed
- Keep a little diary and record the nights when you wet the bed, this might help you find out why you wet the bed
- Before you go to sleep try to imagine yourself dry, try thinking of yourself and your bed dry through the entire night
- Make sure you use the toilet right before you go to bed
- During the day, try holding in your wee as long as possible (but not so long that you wet your pants) to make your bladder nice and strong so you can keep dry all night long