Enuresis (Bedwetting)

Nocturnal Enuresis is the medical term for bedwetting and it is far more common than people realise – every week 1 in 6 five-year-olds and 1 in 15 eight-year-olds wets the bed. The stage when a child remains dry through the night will differ from child to child, although girls tend to be reliably dry a little earlier than boys.

Though most children grow out of bedwetting there are some who continue to wet the bed through their childhood years and often into their teens. In this case it is wise to check that your child doesn't have an underlying medical condition which could be at the root of the problem.

  • Urinary infection
  • Diabetes
  • Under-developed bladder system (often related to other development issues)
  • Constipation
  • If one or both parents experienced bedwetting
  • Stress such as being bullied, having problems at school or at home, bereavement, divorce or relocation
  • Sleeping too deeply

There are some approaches and techniques which may help reduce the instances of bedwetting, including:
• Reducing fluid intake before bedtime and improving access to the toilet during the night (by leaving a light on perhaps)
• Keep a diary of food and drink intake and look for patterns on the nights when bedwetting occurs
• Use pyjama pants to make your child more comfortable
• Don't show your frustration or blame your child – it's not their fault. They will only feel guilty and ashamed and the matter could get worse
• Wee 1, 2, 3 – encourage your child to "push" three times after weeing to expel those last drops of urine
• Alarms that wake your child when they start wetting the bed
• Reward star charts that encourage behaviour patterns that help with remaining dry through the night – such as doing the Wee 1, 2, 3 or drinking water instead of fizzy pop
• Tablets, for children over seven, that help reduce the amount of urine the body produces

How can hypnotherapy help?

Hypnotherapy can help reduce or halt bedwetting completely by using positive imagery and subconscious instructions. During hypnotherapy anatomy and the way in which the brain functions with the bladder is explained. Children are then taught to relax while hypnosis is induced, during which emphasis is placed on the child's capacity to control their body and instructions given to wake when the bladder is full. Sometimes the image of locking the bladder with a large colourful key with a sentry standing guard can also be quite powerful and effective.

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