10 answers

4 Year Old Wetting Bed at Night

Recently my 4 year old has had a problem wetting the bed during the night. I stop all fluids a couple of hours before he goes to bed (last drink is with dinner). I even make sure he wakes up around midnight and take him to the bathroom. He is in such a deep sleep I don't even think he realizes he is going but he does. When he wakes up in the morning he is soaking wet. Most of the time he doesn't even realize that he has wet the bed. Sometimes he wakes up and changes his clothes and tell me he wets the bed. I think that he is in such a deep sleep that he doesn't realize what he did. My husband wants to put him back in diapers at night, and I don't want to. I think if he is in a diaper of some sort at night, he won't bother to go to the bathroom at night. Please help with any more sugguestions. I don't have a clue what to do anymore. This has just started recently and he has been potty trained for over a year. Thanks!!!

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Hi M. Take him to his pediatrican to see if there's a problem. Since he been potty trained over a year.

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Hi,

My daughter is 7 1/2 and she still wets at night. She was dry all night before we started potty training. We have gone through all the tests by doctors, and there was nothing physically an issue. My daughter wears what we call "paper underwear" (good nights or the generic brand). Some kids bodies have not developed in that way including there brain promting them to wake up when it is time to go to the bathroom. Different people's body do this in fact I had that issue until I was 21. Good since unless, I have had a few to many:). If you are worried about the social implications there has been no issues so far. She is going to camp next week for the week. She went last year for a few days last year and loves going!She just changes in a private area like the bathroom or vaulted toliet (out door potty) and puts the paper underwear on. 'The have boy and girl versions. I usually buy them at Target and by the jumbo pack made by Target.

L.

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M., this seems to be a recurring question on the board---every parent deals with it and it seems to be around this age. Our oldest daughter at age 7 still has issues. We found that when she was especially tired or in a growth spurt it really got bad. We tried those nighttime "feels so much like real underwear" things. Ha. They don't look or feel like real underwear...our daughter at age 5 refused to wear "those diaper things". We found that waking her up right before we go to be and have her use the bathroom has worked best. We try to gauge if she is extra tired or has had a lot to drink and wake her up. When she had accidents a few nights in a row we will wake her up for a week or so each night and then try a night without waking her to see if she either gets up herself or wakes up dry.

Since you are already getting him up once, maybe you need to get him up twice. Did you check with the doc to make sure he doesn't have a bladder infection? Twice seems like a lot to go potty. That probably would be a good idea to rule that out first as an issue then start getting him up a few times a night. When a friend of mine was a kid her family used one of those buzzer things that wakes the kid up if the bed gets wet during the night. It worked great but---The kids got so used to the buzzer that one night when the smoke detector went off all the kids headed into the bathroom thinking they each had wet the bed! Good luck!

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Hi M. Take him to his pediatrican to see if there's a problem. Since he been potty trained over a year.

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Sometimes kids, especially boys, have issues at night. My daughter is 7 and still wets the bed at night. I was at my wits end when my husband admitted that HE wet the bed until he was 12. When I asked why he did not tell me that little nugget of information, he told me I never asked. Don't let your little guy feel bad about himself. It happens. My daughter wears underjams. They work great-no leaks. They are for children up to 120 lbs. He'll outgrow it. Wait a bit before taking him to the doctor. The whole scene could traumatize him.

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My son is 4 and has been potty-trained (daytime) since he was 2. He still wears a "night night" to bed because he is such a sound sleeper and does not wake to pee. He will outgrow this, rest-assured. So I suggest just putting a pull-up on him at night, while continuing with your routine of waking him, reduced liquids, etc.

Best of luck!

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Our 4 year old son still wets the bed occasionally, and it seems to go in spurts where he'll be dry for a week and then have a wet night. He also doesn't seem to know until he wakes up that he's wet. I think especially for boys that this is pretty normal and common. We just keep putting him in underwear. I'm not about to go back to pull ups because we had a lot of trouble getting him to poop on the potty and had to go cold-turkey with the pull ups... I just put a waterproof pad under his sheet and if he wakes up wet during the night, he comes into our room and sleeps. We don't make a big deal about it at all. But we do give him tons of praise every morning that he stays dry all night. He even is really proud when he wakes up in the mornings and runs straight into the bathroom to pee. Their bodies are growing so fast... they really have to be able to feel that they need to go while sleeping and it takes time to develop that skill...

Also, I'm going against the grain here, but I've always been against cutting off liquids for this purpose. We certainly don't give him tons and tons of liquids right before bed, but if he asks for milk or water, we give it to him. Especially this time of year I'm thirsty all the time and worry about dehydration. We just ask him to go potty before he goes to sleep. I haven't noticed any difference in our success rate on nights when he drinks a lot vs. nights he doesn't. He could drink very little at night and still wet the bed. Or he could drink 2 cups of milk before bed and stay dry all night...

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Unfortunately, I don't have any real advice except to be patient. I just finished dealing with this for probably almost a year with my 4 yr-who'd been potty trained for over a year days& nights. I too, was against the pull-ups. I feared that the comfort of the pull-up would cause a greater regression. It's tough work, but I just had to clean the sheets the next day. I also cup off liquids a couple hrs before bed, did the midnights waking, everything you are doing. But one slip-up--too much water after brushing, I forget to wake him, etc., we'd have a wet bed. I eventually told him I wouldn't be waking him anymore. Some days he woke, others he didn't. I still don't know if we are finally past this phase, but it has been at least a month since his last wet bed. It seemed to just click one night. I can give him more water after brushing and he will wake up now if he needs to. As frustrating as it can be for you and your child, only time will resolve this issue. He'll get there. =0)

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This is totally normal and I agree with your husband. A diaper or pull up at night is fine, and some kids need that for a long time. It doesn't mean he doesn't have control, it's just that he is sleeping so soundly that he WON'T wake up no matter what. You can't expect a child that young to wake up... they just can't and won't sometimes. Just let him wear a pull up and act like it's nothing and go on with it. Once he's been accident free for a period of time, you can take away the pull up and see what happens. This is very common, especially in boys, and 4 is really young to expect them to be clean through the night ALL the time. My 3 year old is, usually, but if he's over tired, we know he might have an accident. It has more to do with muscle control than being able to wake up. It's a physical stage in his development, and totally nothing to worry about. If you bring it up to your ped, I am sure they will tell you it's nothing.

Oh and one other thing... STOP waking him up in the night to go. You are training his body to pee at that time, so he is going to have a harder time staying dry that way. Let him go through the night on his own. Just give him a pull up to wear just in case...

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