Is bedwetting disturbing your child's sleep?

If your child's sleep is being disturbed by bedwetting there are some practical steps that you can take, however it's also worth remembering that bedwetting even in older children is common, and sometimes children may just not be "ready"

One mum told us "My daughter didn't come out of daytime nappies until she was 3 (literally as she started mornings at nursery) she is now 4 and half and still in nighttime nappies. Although we have had the very occasional dry night, more often than not her nappy is wet is night, however it's probably the only thing I have been relaxed about - as long as she is comfortable, happy and sleeping, I do not feel in a major rush"

Approximately one in five children of 4 and a half years wets the bed at least once a week, according to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)*

We thought it might be useful to provide the Sheffield Children's Trust advice on bedwetting  - see below.

(You may  also want to take a look at the NHS choices guidelines on bedwetting)


1. Bedwetting is a common problem affecting 1 in 10 children at the age of 7 years.

2. One of the most important things to check is whether your child is drinking enough during the day. 6 – 8 drinks (around 200mls each) of clear fluids evenly spread through the day are important to make sure bladder capacity is sufficient to hold all the urine made overnight.

3. Lifting your child to go to the toilet while still asleep may not be a good idea as it may be

training them to wee while asleep.

4. Waking them to have a wee a couple of hours or so after they have gone to sleep may be sufficient to keep them dry by morning but it's best not to do this for long periods. The

bladder needs practice to grow to hold all the overnight wee.

5. Do encourage your child to take control of weeing during the day, especially if they are

leaving it to the last minute and are often caught short while playing or in lessons.

Planning ahead is a good thing to learn and increase their focus on their bladder that is

going to help at night.

6. Try to avoid fizzy, caffeine or blackcurrant drinks.

7. Reduce drinks of any sort in the 2 hour period before bed – but don’t let your child go


8. Encourage your child to wee twice at bedtime, once before getting ready for bed and

again before going to sleep.

9. If your child is in pull-ups, do try them without for a week or so every 3 months – especially if they are becoming drier.

10. If your child is dry for around 50% of nights, reward charts for dry nights can be helpful for short spells. Do not continue if there are no signs of progress.

11. If your child is still frequently wet at night by the age of 7, it is still worth seeing if other

forms of treatment will help, such as various medicines or enuresis alarms. Do see your GP/ school nurse tMore information is available at ERIC the UK childhood Continence Charity* NICE guidance cg1

If you would like help with your child's sleep, please contact us

Please bear in mind, this is general advice, and if you have any concerns about your child's physical or emotional welbeing you should always seek professional medical advice immediately.

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