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9 Tips for Coping with Bedwetting

It’s a milestone that every parent looks forward to: the day when your child finally begins going to the bathroom consistently, without prompting or your assistance.

At which point we mark diapers and pull-ups permanently off of our shopping list, we plan a vacation with our annual cost savings, and we do a quick fist pump as we say good riddance to that smelly, old diaper pail.

Unfortunately for many parents, that celebration is short-lived. It is not uncommon for children to regress as they age for a number of reasons and go through a phase where they begin to wet the bed. Dealing with this can be difficult, frustrating, and hard to understand. Tackling it in a way that helps your child move past this stage without damaging their self-esteem can be challenging.

Here are a few helpful tips to cope with bedwetting:

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  • Never punish or ridicule your child 1 of 9
    Never punish or ridicule your child
    Bedwetting can be a frustrating problem to deal with as a parent, but it's even more embarrassing for a child. Punishing them or raising your voice will only make your child feel ashamed. Institute a no teasing policy by ensuring their siblings understand that ridicule is unacceptable. Also, don't discuss your child's bedwetting problem with others in their presence.
  • Be supportive 2 of 9
    Be supportive
    Ensure your child understands that what is happening to them is normal. This is important for keeping the lines of communication open so that you can work together to solve the problem. If you or your spouse wet the bed as a child, share that with them. Let them know you outgrew it and they will too!
  • Put a deadline on fluid intake 3 of 9
    Put a deadline on fluid intake
    Enforce a strict rule that they are not allowed to have liquids close to bed time. Two hours before lights out is reasonable. If they complain that they are thirsty before bed, give them a sip of water only.
  • Make stopping by the bathroom part of your night time routine 4 of 9
    Make stopping by the bathroom part of your night time routine
    If they are in the bathroom washing up before bed, remind them to empty their bladder. This can play a huge part in remaining dry through the night.
  • Leave a light on 5 of 9
    Leave a light on
    Reduce your child's reluctance to get out of bed in the middle of the night by investing in a few night lights. Ensuring that their path to the bathroom is well lit may ease their apprehension about the dark walk to the potty alone.
  • Eliminate diuretics from your child’s diet 6 of 9
    Eliminate diuretics from your child's diet
    Maybe you aren't allowing your child to guzzle soda, but there are other ways caffeine, a known diuretic, can sneak into their diet. Chocolate is one common culprit. If your kid is wetting the bed, eliminating food and beverages that make them have to go can't hurt.
  • Reward your child 7 of 9
    Reward your child
    Set a goal for your child. If they wake up dry a certain number of nights in the week offer them something they enjoy. A little motivation goes a long way.
  • Layer your linens 8 of 9
    Layer your linens
    When all else fails or until you find a solution to the problem, try layering your child's sheets. Invest in a couple of mattress protectors and place them in layers with sheets in between. This will not only protect your child's bed, but make middle of the night clean up less of a hassle.
  • Seek medical advice 9 of 9
    Seek medical advice
    While many children grow out of bedwetting, there are medical conditions that can cause your child to have trouble holding their bladder. If the problem persists or if they begin to have daytime accidents, it may be time to consult your physician to rule out the possibility of a larger issue.

Photo credit: iStockphoto

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