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7 year old DS wets bed most nights

(19 Posts)
imtheonlyone Wed 17-Oct-12 11:50:06

I don't know what to do. My DS is 7 and a half and he very often wets the bed. I have recently taken him out of nappies as he is embarrassed to wear them now and I use those dry nights sheets instead now.
I have tried restricting fluids after dinner time but it doesn't seem to make a difference. I know he can go through the night because last week he was only wet one night out I seven but this week it's been four nights on the trot now and it's so hard to wash every day ... And get it all dry again!
I know it's not really uncommon for boys this age, but I feel frustrated and I know he does too - most nights he genuinely does not wake and will lie in the wet till he wakes in the morning!
So you think he got too used to having he nappies on? But I couldn't not use them because he was never dry .....
Just wondered whether any of you lovely people had the same problem and what you did/do that might help?

SilverCharm Wed 17-Oct-12 11:54:27

Well my friend gets her son out of bed at about 10.00pm and takes him half asleep to the loo.....she does it at the same time nightly and now he sometimes just does it himself....could you try that?

moogalicious Wed 17-Oct-12 11:55:11

My friend's ds had the same problem. She went to her GP although I can't remember the outcome <helpful hmm> so that might be the next step. She also tried an alarm which wakes the child up before or as they're weeing.

Her ds is 10 and has outgrown wetting the bed.

imtheonlyone Wed 17-Oct-12 12:29:55

Thanks ladies - Silvercharm - I have tried lifting him but it doesn't seem to help and research suggests that it's not beneficial in the long run!!! (We can't win can we??!) I found that he was often already wet by the time I went to him whether it was 10, 11, 12 .... So I stopped doing that.
Interested to hear how an alarm works that's knows when they wee??!!
I sen him for a wee twice before bed so he has one when he brushes his teeth and ten another one after his story - he always passes something! Doc suggested I try that one! And he is only having half a cup of water with his dinner (and I feel awful cos he always asks for more!) and nothing after 6pm except sips when doing his teeth??!!

hillbilly Wed 17-Oct-12 18:06:27

DD was in night time nappies until age 6. I was against "lifting her also because it did not logically make sense to me. Our doctor however recommended trying it, saying that it could trigger something psychologically which in turn could trigger the hormone needed for a child to be able to be dry at night (can't remember the name of the hormone).

So we did it and within a month she was dry at night. It may not work for everyone but it did for us.

Good luck.

Roseformeplease Wed 17-Oct-12 18:10:18

See your Health Visitor and get a referral to the Eneuresis (sp?) nurse locally. They will help you loads and can lend you an alarm which will really help. The alarms are brilliant but really expensive to buy. We were started with a bar chart system - each night dry got a star with a run of nights needed for a reward. One wet night and back to the beginning. Then, once she had established that dry was possible, she then gave us the alarm for a month. No problems since. Mine was my daughter but that shouldn't make a difference.

Roseformeplease Wed 17-Oct-12 18:12:15

Sorry, we were also told by the nurse to get her to drink MoRE, not less as a full bladder will trigger an awakening but a tiny bit of fluid often doesn't cause the stretch receptors to tell the brain to wake up. We were told to avoid dark coloured drinks (coke, black currant) and we still do. Also, some e numbers can over stimulate the bladder, apparently.

harrassedswlondonmum Wed 17-Oct-12 18:19:02

We have the same problem with almost 9 year old twins - so two lots of wet bedding for me. We are now going to the enuresis clinic. Step 1 - lots to drink during the day, no pull ups, and measure wee output when they are desperate once a week. No lifting for a wee - that is against the rules!

Mine also do not wake up. Think I am now paying the price for them always having been fantastic sleepers!

I have bought brolly sheets - a reusable (and most importantly tumble dryable) version of bed mats. They have saved my sanity as my mattress covers are not tumble dryable and I couldn't turn them around quickly enough.

After about two months of this they may try us with the artificial version of the hormone. The alarm will not be the next step for us because they share a room.

It sometimes feels like they will never be dry at night. They have a school sleepover at the end of this school year as their aim - not to mention a week's school journey this time next year....

Good luckx

imtheonlyone Wed 17-Oct-12 18:46:05

No wonder you are harassed swlondonmum!!!! Bless you x

Thanks for your responses. He only ever drinks water - he is one of those Strange children who doesn't like anything else to drink!!! I take the point about a big wee stimulating the need to pee and waking them but I truly believe that he just sleeps so heavily it doesn't make a difference! There is always a big wet patch!!!! Can't imagine how you can cope with doing two lots!! It's hard isn't it?

I have heard of those covers - I was hoping that I wouldn't need to invest because I know he can do it - last week 6 dry out of 7!!!! And then 4 in a row wet! And those pads are more expensive than pull ups!!

He too has residential visit with school early next year and I'm dreading it - I don't want him to be wet and be ridiculed for it sad

I think I may have to consult health visitor or doctor again. I don't really want to give him the hormone as he already takes regular medication and has had plenty of drugs in his lifetime already!!! But if needs must .... It must be awful for him too! Sometimes he gets a rash because he has laid in the wet all night sad

Thanks again for your support - it really helps smile

justturned40 Thu 18-Oct-12 20:53:40

My daughter was bedwetting until the age of 6. I really think that they have to be ready both emotional and physically, and you can't make it happen. We kept her in the night nappies, and every now and then would try her without them. Usually she would be dry one night then wet for a few nights. She would get a rash from lying in a wet bed, so we'd put her back in the nappies again, as otherwise her skin would get sore.

She too was a heavy sleeper and would be fast asleep in a wet bed. As you say, one of the downsides of having children who are good sleepers!! We tried lifting a few times but it never worked so we gave up. It was frustrating but we tried not to make her feel bad as it can be a physical issue - the brain needs to produce a hormone which suppresses the production of urine at night-time and in some children this just doesn't seem to happen until they are older.

I spoke to the local school nurse who said that they don't consider it a problem until the age of 7, when they can refer you to the enurisis clinic, so as your son is 7 you should be able to get some support. You may need a referral from your GP, and do chase them up if you don't hear from them.

Have a look at this website -
It is a charity which deals specifically with childhood continence issues. Lots of useful information on there.

I remember reading an article in the Guardian by the American comedian Sarah Silverman who regularly wet the bed until she was 16! I also got chatting to a mum in my daughter's school who was having the same issue with her 7 year old son. That all reassured me that my DD wasn't unusual - so I know its hard, but try not to let it get to you.

Leafmould Thu 18-Oct-12 21:32:52

Hi I'm the only one.... By the way you are not the only one!

Have you measured his bladder capacity?
Does he suffer from constipation?
Have you tried getting him to wee, then spending 20 mins in bed relaxing (perhaps reading him a story or letting him read himself) and then getting him up to wee again befor putting the lights out?

The hormone people talk of is vasopressin, and it is triggered by the deep relaxation in sleep and inhibits production of urine. However if there is a delay in starting to produce it, you can still be producing urine whilst asleep, filling bladder and then wetting bed.

The 20 mis relaxing in bed may mean that 20 mins of that urine produced is not there to wet the bed with, so may help.

With regards to the residential, you can do a trial with desmopressin, and then if it works, just use it on those occasions when it would be really helpful, instead of using it as a regular medication.


happyfeet666 Fri 19-Oct-12 21:02:58

The Rodger wireless alarm worked in a couple of weeks for my then 6 year old ds, it was expensive but you can get second hand ones on e bay.

WineOhWhy Fri 19-Oct-12 21:07:33

We got an alarm. It is really noisy. DD does not wake up. The rest of us do, even though some of us are on a different floor.

Chocoholiday Fri 19-Oct-12 21:12:26

My son is just about out of pj pants and he is 7 3/4. It's been really frustrating at times but my gut feeling was always to leave it and not make a big deal out of it. He's an anxious child in some ways and I think boosting his confidence as much as possible in other ways has worked - he took the initiative to stop wearing pants at night recently, and despite repeated accidents we kept going. That last wee just before he falls asleep is crucial - we've explained that his body keeps making wee for as long as he's awake. He's got that in one now and feels in charge of making sure it's done. He's mostly dry now, which is great. So don't worry - he will get there in his own time.

MavisGrind Fri 19-Oct-12 21:13:37

I'm another one with a 6yr old ds who is still in pull ups.

I know someone who's dd is still in pull ups at 9 and when she went on residential with school she spoke to the teachers who arranged for her to be in a smallish dorm with girls she knew really well. They also put a pull up in the bed for her so she could get into it after lights out and then she left it in the bed in the morning for staff to dispose of.

It made me happier about pending residentials for ds!

LetsKateWin Fri 19-Oct-12 21:20:30

I was still wetting the bed when I was 8/9. I used to dream that I was on the loo and wet the bed. I still have those dreams sometimes now, but something in the dream, like not being able to lock the door, always prevents me from going.

I grew out of it in the end. I hope you manage to find a solution for your son.

AlexanderS Fri 19-Oct-12 21:39:56

Hi, I wet the bed regularly until I was 15. My parents tried everything - not allowing me to drink after 6pm, reward charts (on one I had to draw a sun if I'd had a dry night and a raincloud if I'd had a wet night), an alarm. Nothing worked, until our GP finally put me on medication. In my case stress played a part, it got distinctly worse when I was having problems at school. Are you confident that your DS hasn't got any psychosocial issues?

Also it should go without saying but whatever you do don't get angry with your DS. When I was too young to change my own sheets if I woke up wet in the night I had to wake my mum up to change my sheets and generally the result was a bollocking. Sometimes I would try to avoid this by lying in the wet sheets for the rest of the night or sleeping on the floor. I don't recommend these things.

My mum also made me have this horrible thick plastic sheet on my bed between the normal sheet and the mattress, which was really embarrassing because it would rustle when my friends came round and sat on my bed and they all worked out what it was for. I look back and appreciate I needed something to stop the mattress from getting ruined but did it have to announce to the world that I was a bedwetter? Something to bear in mind when selecting mattress-protecting materials.

imtheonlyone Fri 19-Oct-12 22:23:43

Ladies, thank you all so much for your responses! I really so appreciate them!
I am trying not to make this into a big thing for him, but it is hard and I know he gets upset when he's wet.
I do try to remain calm - I don't believe I do ever shout at him if he wets the bed. He has bunk beds in his room so if he does wake or if I feel him wet before I go to bed, I quickly change him and pop him in the top bunk.
I take your points about anxiety playing a part and yes, he is a very sensitive little man and this does possibly have an effect on whether he wets or not. I do believe he is very happy at school - I have no issues there. I split from his dad three years ago and things are settled now, he goes to his dads every other weekend and seems to be happy with the situation. But maybe he isn't? We moved house in Feb and moved in with my new partner we have bought a house together. DS generally gets on well with DP and respects and likes him so he says. They do get on and DP is great with both my boys. He moved school at the same time and I was scared but he settled so quickly and I've watched him on the playground when he didn't know I was looking and he defo had lots of friends.
But I can't be certain that any of this has anything to do with his bed wetting - it was always an issue - my DS2 was potty trained at 21 months and out of bed time nappies at two an a half!!! This doesn't appear to bother him and I always just tell him that everyone is different and it doesn't matter.
I had a quick look at those alarms - it may not be something I consider just yet as there is no way I could afford one!! But I can see how they could work.
I think just some reassurance that he's not alone and it's normal helps to cope with the washing!! I have breathable plastic sheets on his bed so they are waterproof but don't make a noise when you lie on them - I remember having one on my bed when I was a kid - they were awful weren't they??!! blush
Last night he was dry gringrin which was great - he's gone to his dads for the weekend and dad promised to get him a pack of match attacks if he was dry!! Seemed to work smile but not sure I could justify a pack a day!!!
Thanks again for responses - it means a lot that you would take the time to respond to me smile

AlexanderS Sat 20-Oct-12 15:28:31

Moving house, moving in with a new father-figure and changing school are three stressful events for a child, even if they go well IYSWIM (my issues started when I started school, even though I liked school well enough - like your DS I was a very sensitive child). The chances are this is a phase your DS will come through, but if he doesn't like others have said on here you can always ask your GP for a referal to an specialist eneuresis nurse.

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