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3 Year Old Still Having Accidents at Night

My 3 year old was potty trained right when she turned 2 yrs, and she has done great, hardly ever any accident etc. But at night i still have to put a diaper on her because she still pee during the night. She also is a very heavy drinker. She probley drinks about 6-10 cups of water or juice a day. She also still wakes up during the night for a cup of water. Im sure that is the major prob is that she still drinks during the night. I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions other than elimating all the drinks we have cut back on her alot, but you also know what its like when your child is thirsty and you cant deny then water etc. But any suggestions on sleeping threw the night would also be great. I cant remember a full night of rest i have had since she was born back in 2004. Thanks!!!!

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Hmm well I havent had much training with potty training being that my daughter is not at that stage yet. Cutting back on her drinks before bed could help and when she wakes up at night just give here enough to quinch her thirst. But then again sometimes you have to be patient, every child succeeds at different stages. Just be glad that she only three! I have an 11 year old brother who still wets in the bed at night and we've tried everything from waking him up at night to medication and nothing has worked so we've just gotten used to it. It might just be something they have to grow out of.

She is only 3 and these things are going to happen. Give her time to learn this isn't going to be acceptable when she gets older. Not many people are going to be lucky. My nephew is 8 and he still wets the bed at night and my son is 4 and hasn't wet the bed since he was about 26 months, so all kids are different. She only needs time and patience.

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Hi J.. My daughter is now eight and had the same issues. She did not grow out of this until she was 4 1/2. She is still a heavy drinker so that has not changed. Your daughter will learn to get up and go to the bathroom over time. We had much of the same sleep issues as well - this changed when she got her own room. Good luck!


I will not be able to give you advice on how to potty train as we are still in the process here :)
But I did want to mention that you don't want to overlook any possible medical issues...if you think she drinks a LOT more than kids her age, please mention that to your pediatrician. I had a cousin who did that and she had a medical conditional that needed to be treated with meds. She drank excess water and was hard to potty train.
I don't want to scare you, just want you to be aware. It may just be that she needs to cut back on her water at night...but don't rule out other issues.
Just my two cents.

My cousin had a bedwetting problem for long past normal. His problem was that he sleeps so heavily that he just didn't wake up to "go". My uncle had to go grab my cousin out of bed in the middle of the night and make him go to the bathroom. He finally grew out of it.

If your daughter gets up for a drink of water, make her go to the bathroom. Maybe if she can go then, she won't wet her bed.

Hi J.:
If you ever going to get any sleep, you must wean your child from the mid night juice or water. My son was the same way. My doctor told me he was not thristy. It was just a habit. You can gradually wean her, a little less each night. It's really hard to catch up on your sleep. Not having enought sleep can make you a different person. You are not hurting your child by not givig her water etc. during the middle of the night. Acutually, she maybe tired as well. Good Luck

Accidents, especially at night are not a developmental concern until age 6-7. Children's bodies and neurological systems mature at different rates.

My 3 yr old twins born in July 2004 are still in pullups at night, and are fully day time potty trained wearing regular underwear. My oldest daughter was night time trained at this age.

If you are truly concerned, ask your pediatrician about it, but it is completely normal at this age.

This website is great for explaining developmental milestones, we use it in my developmental psychology classes.

You are going to have to limit her drinking at night. If she insists on drinking in the middle of the night give her a little room temperature water (cold water makes them want to drink more)

Once you curb that then she shouldn't be wetting the bed too often.

My 6 year old still wets the bed on a nightly basis but we finally put him on medication to help him. We wanted to see if he'd grow out of it but it seems there is more to it than just his liquid intake.

My 3 year old on the other hand rarely has an accident at night.

Much luck to you!!

You may not want to but I would just put her in pull-ups through the night until she starts waking up dry and I would limit her liquids for a hour or two before bedtime and give her a snack instead which would fill her need to have something in her tummy without it having to be in liquid form. Course you have to give a little to drink with a snack but it wouldn't have to be a lot....hope that helps.

I cut off all drinks at 7. That seems to be the magic number. If she's thirsty at night, I fill up one of her doll cups, which is very small and give it to her, that way she'll think she's getting a cup full when she's really getting just a swallow.

This has worked like a charm, now if I could just get her to go number 2......

I know that being a full time working mom "enough sleep" seems like a fairytale concept we can only imagine but if you're anything like me you probably stay up at least a couple hours after your little one falls asleep (to get all those daunting chores done you just can't do in the couple of hours between work and bed time.... if that is the case then (as hard as it is) try waking your daughter up to go to the potty before you go to sleep. But the truth is, just like someone else already said, bedwetting is totally normal for 3-4 year olds...my baby just has occasional accidents at night and I can almost bet on them being the nights that she falls asleep in the car on the way home or while watching a movie or anytime we aren't able to adhere to our normal night time routine. Follow the basic rules of thumb (no drinks within 2 hours of bed, potty immediately before bed, and if that still doesn't work wake her up before you hit the sack and make her potty then)... I wish you the best; you'll get your full night's sleep soon!

Night-time wettings are NORMAL until age 5, I wouldn't sweat it at all. Take dc to the bathroom just before bed and limit drinking to a few sips for the 1.5 to 2 hours before bed and just take it in stride--BTDT with mine, she was just shy of 5 when she stopped wetting the bed and getting up to go to the bathroom by herself at night.


Potty training is a difficult subject. Every child is different. If it helps, my little boy is 3 and he still wears pull ups at night. He's usually dry in the morning, but for that to happen we had to cut out drinks before bed and in the night if he woke up. We had about a week when he would wake up and want a drink and I would just have to tell him it was bed time and he could have a drink in the morning. Now if he wakes up for some reason, he doen't even ask for a drink because he knows the rules. It may be hard at first, but it will be worth it. I wouldn't cut out any fluids during the day, just before bed and in the mddle of the night.

I know you are exhausted, but just make her get up when she wakes up in the middle of the night to go pee. Tell her she can have her water if she goes pee AFTERWARDS. She won't wet the bed and eventually she will get tired of that routine. I remember my mom did that to my sister...It didn't take that long (maybe 2 months). Best of luck!!

Hi J.,
I am sorry, I really don't have any advice for you. But I did want to let you know you are not alone on the sleeping through the night issue. My 3 year old has not slept through the night since she was born either. I also have a 22 month old and she does a little better, but not much. I crave sleep these days. Also, my 3 year old is potty trained also and still wears a pull up at night. I have heard it is pretty normal for them not to be night trained until age 4 or 5. But I will be watching the answers you get to this question!! Good luck.

Hey J.,

I completely understand what you are going thru. My twins are 3 1/2 yrs old and are still going potty at night or early morning. They, of course, keep dry during the day and do very well with naptime, but night time is the big one. They wear pull ups at nap & nighttime, since I don't feel like doing laundry in the middle of the night. This may sound horrible, but I've been told to let them sleep in the mess one time and they probably won't wet the bed again. But I just don't have the heart to do that.

I was wondering if she was having other issues, like change in schedule or something like that. Some times that will trigger accidents...espically if she has been great up until they started. Also, I've been told that you need to make sure they go potty before you do...which means waking them up just enough to go potty and then put them back to sleep. I, personally haven't done that yet. My twins are very sound sleepers, so they only wake up in the middle of the night because of a bad dream or they are sick. I've been Blessed that I haven't had any sleep problems, except for the occasional they don't want to rest in the afternoon and are crabby until bedtime. :)

They are still small children, so we need to give them a break when accidents happen. I'm sure everything will be fine. You may want to invest in those mattress protectors that are made of plastic, to help...that way you aren't having to wash everything.

Also, as far as your PCOS is concerned...been thru it and still living proof that you can conceive with it. If you want to talk about it with someone that had gone thru it, just give me a buzz on my private e-mail of ____@____.com and we can talk. After 7 yrs of ttc, we were Blessed with the twins.

Take care,
God Bless,
J. D

Mom to Ashleigh & Austin ~ 3 1/2 yr old

You're not alone. My nephew will be 5 in February, and he still has to wear a pull-up at night because he wets himself. Most of the time, my sister says he just doesn't wake up to pee. He usually goes to bed late, and I guess that's why he doesn't wake up when he has to go. But, even when he gets up, he'll keep his dirty, pee-filled pull-up on. I would think he'd want to hurry up and take it off. Also, as far as the drinking at night goes, I'd try to stop the drinks about an hour or two before bed. Maybe make her last drink some warm milk (to help her sleep). Also, maybe she needs a "lovey" like a stuffed animal or something to hug on to help her get back to sleep when she wakes up at night.

Hmm well I havent had much training with potty training being that my daughter is not at that stage yet. Cutting back on her drinks before bed could help and when she wakes up at night just give here enough to quinch her thirst. But then again sometimes you have to be patient, every child succeeds at different stages. Just be glad that she only three! I have an 11 year old brother who still wets in the bed at night and we've tried everything from waking him up at night to medication and nothing has worked so we've just gotten used to it. It might just be something they have to grow out of.

I am a little confused about what to do. My little girl is a big drinker also but haven't started potty training. The reason you are thirsty is due to a mechanism inside you that tells your body that you need hydrating. Try to think how it is if you are really thirsty. I would probably try to cut back after supper. Still have a drink but smaller amount. I would have to really think about this because I have a feeling that I am going to have the same problem with my little girl (14 months now). I would probably feel like she isn't completely ready and just put pull ups back on her for about 5 to 7 days and then try it again. In the mean time, let her watch you go to the potty and tell her how big girls do that. Sounds like you need a good rest first of all.
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There is nothing at all abnormal about her still having night accidents. My main question is does she still get a sippy type cup? My son is three and he got up during the night wanting a cup and peed the bed until I took his sippy away. He no longer gets up at night wanting a cup because I started making him go and sit at the table to drink out of an adult cup. It also cut his drinking down. He was over drinking like your daughter. It is absolutely amazing at the difference it made.
I also decided that I was going to start a reward system. My son loves chocolate pudding more than anything in the world. I buy the little cups and he gets one if he goes all night with out an accident. There is no punishment if there is an accident but no matter what he does NOT get pudding that day.
For the first week I would wake him up and walk him to the bathroom and ask him to potty. Now he gets up on his own everynight. He doesn't even wake me to tell me. All of this took less than a month. Don't get me wrong he has an occasional accident but he sleeps in underwear(which saves a lot of money) and he is really proud of himself.
OH yeah, I also do this stupid little song and dance every morning that he goes with out an accident. Just the praise alone makes him happy. The first thing out of his moth when he wakes is "MOMMY, I'M DRY!!!!!"

Hi J., I am sorry to hear about your illness. Just try not to focus on it and it will get better. My only suggestion to you about your daughter is just dont give her anything but water after 6pm. They tend to drink juice faster and more of it too. Also make sure she eats all her dinner with water to drink. And if she eats all her food, then she gets juice. I have a drinker also. If he gets up at night, the first thing we tell him to do is go potty and then go back to bed. He does and this prevents accidents at night. He is 3 1/2 and he still has them every now and then but that is when we forget to tell him to go when he wakes up. So it is second nature for us. Another thing is if she gets up wanting water at night, instead sit her on th epotty and it will distract her and she will forget. I knwo you don't want to deprive her of water but she needs to learn that you don't eat and drink all night too.

Also, I lost my job last summer and found something to do at home if you are interested my website is www.kristies.fourpointmoms.com.

I hope this helps.

She is only 3 and these things are going to happen. Give her time to learn this isn't going to be acceptable when she gets older. Not many people are going to be lucky. My nephew is 8 and he still wets the bed at night and my son is 4 and hasn't wet the bed since he was about 26 months, so all kids are different. She only needs time and patience.

Well, having accidents at 3 is totally normal. As far as the drinking a lot, try to cut down on the liquid before going to bed and have her use the bathroom before laying down. As far as the waking up in the middle of the night to drink something..what if you just put a little bit of water next to her bed, enough to drink but not so much she will have to pee pee. Keep a night lite on in the bathroom so she can see in order to go to the potty in the middle of the night. On weekends, or when you are off the next day, have her go to the potty when/if she wakes up in the middle of the night.
My son just turned 6 and he was wetting the bed on occasion up until recently. His grandma would put a pull up on him when he would spend the weekend with them and he could wet at will..then he would wet the bed at my house. It was really frustrating to re train him and I had a talk with his grandma too. It is a joint effort. He is doing much better now..he doesn't wet the bed. I drive him nuts though making him go to the bathroom several times before actually closing his eyes. He got the hint and he knows now he is 6 and too old to be wetting the bed.
Good luck..just make a big deal out of her NOT wetting the bed and eventually she will stop with the decreasing of fluids and the frequent potty trips. She is still 3 and will have accidents, but it's better to start this now and not when she is older.

Well, my son was potty trained at around 3. He still had accidents also. First I limited the night drinks before bed time. Plus it was potty time right before bed after brushing the teeth and all. But he was still having the same problem. I relized after our a/c went out and then got fixed about a week later that the room was too cold for him. So, I started keeping his room a little warmer than mine and the bed wetting stopped. It wasnt that he was lazy, it was that he would sleep very sound when it was cold. Like he couldnt feel anything until it was to late. So I would sugest the potty right before climbing in to bed. And if the middle of the night thirst comes up potty again right before getting back in to bed. And if the room is a little cool, close the vents some. It worked for me, it might for you.

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