5-Year Old Still Wearing Pull-ups at Night

Updated on March 10, 2008
E.W. asks from Scarsdale, NY
11 answers

My daughter slept without pull-up for an entire year, then has gone back to wearing pull-ups at night. She always wakes up wet even though she pees right before bed. I need help.

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all your great responses. We have started to limit liquids after 6 pm, but I think we might try waking her before we go to sleep to pee. I'll also talk to the pediatrician about it and get a urinalysis. Truth is she's a very deep sleeper and has difficulty waking up. Thanks again!

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answers from Rochester on

I wish I could offer you help. One of my oldest (twins) will be 7 next month and he still wets the bed. Even when I have cut off liquids at dinner time (5:30 ish...he goes to bed at 8:30) and even if I wake him up to go potty. My 5 year old also wets the bed, though he is off and on now and no longer consistently doing it. Their ped. said that there are things you can do like medicine and bet-wetting monitors. Her son is 6 and wets the bed at night, too. She has made the decision, just like us, to just let him grow out of it. Neither of my sons wear pull-ups, and I'm changing the sheets every day, but I'd rather do that than make him take meds or deal with a bulky monitor.

Good luck!

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answers from Buffalo on

I also have a 5 year old who wets the bed once in a while. However, lately I have been able to keep him dry for about 5 weeks now. He usually goes to bed at 8:30 and goes to the bathroom after brushing his teeth. I don't go to bed until 11:30-12:00 myself, so just before I crawl into bed I wake him up to go potty. It's not that hard to wake him once he's been asleep for at least 3 hrs., anything less than that and I'd never get him up. He never gives me hard time going back to sleep, in fact he hardly ever remembers me waking him up in the first place. My goal is to get him used waking up after sleeping this long, so he'll find it natural to wake up and go potty on his own one day soon. But for now I just keep waking him up after about 3 hours of sleep, and it keeps the sheets dry.

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answers from New York on

My 5 1/2 year old and also 4 year old daughters are taken to the bathroom right before bed time, but also, when my husband comes up for bed, about midnight, he wakes them and sits them on the toilet to go. 9 times out of 10, they go and aren't even fully awake, however, it saves from them going in their sleep(they don't wake themselves up). This has worked for us since our oldest was 3.
Our oldest now usually does not get waken in the middle of the night, and she wakes up dry.
Also, we eliminate any fluids after 6PM, this also helps. When they brush their teeth, they are allowed a little water to rinse.



answers from Jamestown on

hi E.,

My youngest child was potty-trained at 8 months ... here is the secret:

1. as soon as they make that first happy sound in the morning, take them to the potty
2. as soon as they loose interest in food, take them
3. get them up a few hours after they fall asleep to pee (I took mine at midnight)

My kids were also in cloth and I think that must help because they feel something happening.

My kids also always had a water bottle to take to bed -- not a bottle with a nipple, a water bottle for a bicycle -- but now we drink out of glass, not plastic. I save glass juice bottles for water and they still take a jar of water to bed.



answers from Syracuse on

Has something changed in her life that might be affecting her inwardly? My daughter was fully potty trained 18 months. When my husband went to Korea about a year later she started wetting the bed, and never had before. She wore pull ups for that entire year, and got rid of them almost as soon as he came home. She's almost 9 now, and never even has to wake during the night to go pee.
My 7 year old son just stopped wearing pull ups at night, and I have to wake him every night before I go to bed so that he can use the bathroom. He always goes, even though I don't let him drink anything past 7. He is just a hard sleeper and can't wake up to potty. You might just have to wake your daughter every night and make her use the bathroom.



answers from Utica on

One thought is nightmares or dreaming that she is sitting on the toilet in her sleep. that is a common problem, but the other conern would be her bladder or kidneys. A cold in the kidneys or uti or bladder infection could cause a problem. just have the doc check her out for those. My oldest was potty trained when she was small, but when i left an abuser and moved home, she went back to diapers and we had to start over again. There could be something bothering her. did she recently start kindergarden. There could be so many things at that age. Is there a younger sibbling in diapers. I would not be overly concerned. she will stop eventually. Pull ups are something they did not have when we were small, and I got to sleep with a sister who had a chronic problem to help her stay warm cause my parents thought her kidneys were cold. she grew out of it. She also might be sleeping in a really deep sleep and not able to wake up, I would have the doc examine her and if there are no medical issues, then don't worry. this is tempory problem. T.

I would never let my child go to bed with a glass bottle. NEVER!!! if they take a spill out of bed with that bottle, and it happens, they are not going to be in good shape when you find them. I also had a doctor tell me to take the bottle away from her when she developed any teeth so that she would not have rotten teeth.



answers from New York on

When my daughter, now 8, was 3.5 she was still wearing the pull-up at night and she was still wet in the morning. She actually ended up with a recurring yeast infection. My doctor told me to not only have her go before bedtime, but to put regular underwear on her, no more pull-up, and to put her on the toilet again right before I went to sleep, around 10 or 11 pm
( she would basically be asleep, but she peed every time). He said to do this for a week. I did and it totally worked. She woke up dry from the day I started it. Good Luck!



answers from New York on

Hi E.,

As long as she doesn't have a UTI or other medical issue, doctors aren't concerned about bedwetting til at least age 6. Sometimes their bladder simply isn't big enough or mature enough to hold their urine through the night. Wearing a pullup or a diaper to bed (diapers are cheaper) isn't the worst thing in the world. Was she previously going all night without "going" or was she waking up in the night to pee? It may be that at 5, past the age of naps and busy with kindergarten, she may be sleeping longer and harder, and isn't noticing the signal that she needs to pee or that she's wet. Hopefully she'll grow out of this soon.



answers from New York on

We had a similar problem with our second daughter. We weren't thrilled she was still in pull-ups, but it was hard when she told us she was a big girl and babies wear pull-ups. What has worked for us is the following plan- She doesn't drink anything after 6:30. She goes to the bathroom at 8:00 which is bedtime. I take her to the bathroom again before I go to bed at 10:00. We would take her again about 3:00. We have done this for the last year with great success. We now only take her before bed, unless one of us gets up to go. It has been hard, but I think there is a light at the end of the tunnel... Good luck! M.-mom of three



answers from New York on

Have you taken her to the doctor for tests? She may have a UTI or she may suffer from bladder reflux. Here is a link about the medical term for bed wetting and possible reasons... http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/children/par...

Definately make a doctor's appointment to rule out anything medical. Good luck!

ps. both myself and my daughter had bladder reflux. Mine was treated with surgery and my daughter's went away in time. It's genetic. Private message me with any questions about it.



answers from New York on

Please seek professional help. You really should take her to a doctor just to make sure there are no physical or mental problems.