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How do I stop nighttime nappies for my 4 year old?

(15 Posts)
MooandPops Mon 22-Sep-08 14:22:07

Hi there

What is the best way to get rid of DS wearing nighttime nappies? Having a terrible getting him to poo on the toilet (hasn't done it now for NINE MONTHS!!!! Aaagh) and am thinking that wearing nighttime nappies might be giving him mixed messages.

Went to the doctors today and am trying Movical to train him to the toilet thing but have no idea of the best way to lose the nappies at night... cold turkey? Lift him at night?? (he will hate that am sure)

All advice really really welcome....thanks

Yanda Mon 22-Sep-08 18:12:01

I'm not sure you can "train" them at night, you need to wait until they produce a hormone which gives the bladder the ability to hold on all night. Does he have any dry night time nappies? Does he poo in his night time nappy? Are you using the laxative to stop him holding it in until then? Did he used to poo in the toilet and suddenly stopped? Did something scare him?

Sawyer64 Mon 22-Sep-08 18:22:21

My DD1's nappy seemed to get dryer and dryer,and I thought Nows the time..... then she started "using" them more,so I thought she wasn't ready, but she was 3.5 yrs old,so i just took a chance to "test the water"(pardon the pun!)

She was dry,and no wet beds either.I did Um and ah about lifting her,but decided not to as I always wonder how you'd know when to stop doing thishmm

IMO they are ready or they arent,so try it,prepare the bed with caremats etc,and just see.If after 2-3 nights you have to change the mats/bed lots of times,then you need to try again later on,if its one accident,keep trying.

MooandPops Mon 22-Sep-08 21:40:35

Thanks for your thoughts Yanda - yes I really think that something must have scared him - that and my daughters arrival 8 months ago.

I am not sure what the laxative is for... I think its to make sure that he can feel when we wants to do a poo and to give us enough notice to get him to the toilet and try and tempt him onto it - its so so frustrating and demoralising - I just can't bear the thought of his mates recognising that he has done a mess which they are getting old enough to do now.

He knows not to do it at nursery and finds a spot somewhere in the house or garden to hide away. When its warm he will go in the garden when naked but then gets panicked that it must be cleared away. He will not hear of wearing a nappy (really big child and would be horrid for him) he does not poo in his nappy at night.

He did used to poo on thne loo but only for about three months before it stopped nine months ago - aaagh!

MooandPops Mon 22-Sep-08 21:43:09

Yes you are right Sawyer - am going to give it a go for 2-3 nights for am thinking that it might be giving him conflicting messages - you know out of nappies at night then in during the day - have my undertheblanket covers at the ready!

Here goes...

Dottoressa Mon 22-Sep-08 21:54:29

I can't help with the poo thing, though if it's any consolation my DS did a poo in a Kandoo box ("to see what would happen"). I found it three days later...

I think they can all have funny phases. You've presumably done reward charts, heaps of praise for a poo in the loo and so on?

We ditched night-time nappies when ours were both just over two, following my Mum's advice (namely: if they have two dry nights, stick a plastic undersheet on the bed, ditch the nappies and don't go back to them, ever). For us, the crucial thing was giving them their last big drink at tea time an hour or so before bed, and nothing after that (except a bit of water if they were really thirsty). I'm not convinced by the waiting-for-the-hormone-to-kick-in argument (if it's really true, how come we thirtysomethings were all dry day and night at two?)

Good luck!

Yanda Tue 23-Sep-08 12:20:34

I'm abit unsure about the laxative use if he is not actually constipated because rather than give you enough time to tempt him to the loo it would give you less time? If he can go and do it in the garden etc then it sounds like he had the bowel control and perhaps giving him a laxative would just cause more accidents and therefore more panic?

Dottoressa, I don't think that all thirtysomethings were dry at night at 2 I'm pretty convinced that bedwetting went on and that it was much more frowned on as they were ""supposed to be dry at night. I know that this certainly happened to my brother who was not dry at night until 7, but I can remember the frustration and upset it caused both my mum who thought she had done something wrong and my brother who thought he was doing something naughty. I was dry at night at 2 though (I'm eldest) and I'm sure that nothing different was done. I know that is anecdotal evidence. I believe the hormone to be called vasopressin and there is a MNer who has researched this professionally - Smidge? And it can start being produced from 18 months to 7 years ircc.

MooandPops Tue 23-Sep-08 14:01:25

Oh my goodness am so unsure of what to do - to laxative or not?

Am I being too pushy? The last thing I want to do is upset DS but am so so so so so fed up with having to change him day in and day out - I just want him to learn how to sit on the loo

MadamePlatypus Tue 23-Sep-08 14:11:06

I suspect we thirtysomethings were dry at night at two because we were 'lifted' before our parents went to bed. DS is almost 5 and is now dry more nights than not. I haven't tried to restrict drinks or lift him because I want him to wake up because he needs the loo, not just not need to go to the loo, if that makes sense. Having said that, this has resulted in washing more sheets, so perhaps fluid restriction is the more environmentally friendly course of action!

Re: pooing on the toilet, I don't know if this would help, but when DS was 3 and wouldn't sit on the toilet we just put a DVD in the laptop every night before bathtime and put it on a stool so that he could sit and watch it. After a couple of months we went on holiday and 'forgot' the laptop and he started to go 'unassisted'.

MooandPops Tue 23-Sep-08 14:39:21

Oooh - what a good idea...mmmm loving the DVD thing on the loo

Will dust of Stuart Little and give it a go...dora the Explora even...

Great idea!


Yanda Tue 23-Sep-08 16:14:28

Sorry I didn't mean to make you worry about the laxative, I know it can be hard to know what is the best thing to do sometimes. I also love the dvd on the toilet idea and don't be ashamed to use the chocolate button method!

Or what about getting some cheap toys and wrapping them up and putting them into a lucky dip wizzy homemade box, don't let him see the toys first, but you could get him to help decorate the box and then when he tries to do a poo on the toilet he can have a lucky dip? I'm sure someone else tried this for poos on the loo before and it worked as 4 year olds demand better rewards than a chocolate button lol. Also it is a very instant reward IYSWIM.

Have you tried books about poo? Who's on the loo, or everybody poos?

I'm sorry if you have already tried all this

MooandPops Wed 24-Sep-08 10:02:07

No I haven't tried either of these ideas - books are a good idea as is the lucky dip. Its his birthday this week so am going to concentrate on that and move onto the DVD and perhaps the laxative the week after.

Over the past 24 hours he has expressed that he is really scared of the toilet - I have the big/little seats on both the loos from mothercare (cost a fortune but very good)we have also tried to de-scare him by putting our feet and hands in the pan to show him nothing is there but am sure its the sitting down thing he hates - as soon as he is on he is stiff and unrelaxed - a no-no situation to have a poo.

Am guessing the laxatives will help. Also last night we abandoned night time nappies for the first time (off to remake the bed for second time in a minute!) But am thinking that if they are all gone and we don't go back to nappies at all then it reinforces the message that he is a big boy now and this is what big boys do. We had much fan-fare this morning for him as he didnt wake up during the night - bed wet this am of course but hey thats to be expected.

Oh well -thanks for your thoughts - any ideas how to get a scared boy on the loo?!

MadamePlatypus Fri 26-Sep-08 11:06:52

"any ideas how to get a scared boy on the loo?!"

This has been my tactic for dealing with this kind of thing:

Read parenting books for advice, try explaining, follow lead of child, make it a game.

Leave room.

Allow partner/ grandparent to either physically force child to do whatever it is they don't want to do with much shouting or use inappropriate bribery.

Return to room.

Resume perfect parenting.


sweetchick Fri 26-Sep-08 11:39:05

when my son was 2.5 and I took him off nappies, took him off completely and since first day/nite always used pants.
Remember first nite, slept with pants and went check on him every 10' and been dry.
Only wet his bed 3 times.
But try to put pants on him and keep checking him. Protect his bed.
Regarding poo, I had posted (yesterday) my son and I account on " holding on poo topic".
Movicol will add bulk to the poo. All depends what dose youd been advised. You can try the one sachet a day and see hot it goes. It will get a bit messy but it will all come out.
The only comment I can make on this, is just to give your little one.... TIME.
It will happened, but who knows when.
You and the whole family can keep on trying, but when child refuses, it make things worse but.. not no oneelse than for you. Im not saying this on a nasty way. It is not about yourself, its about a phase your little one its going through and ill take TIME.
Meanwhile, talk to she/he as much as possible and make the going to the loo thing,a funn , relaxing experience.
I take my bb there too, and we sometimes eat, blow bubbles, have a drink, make funny faces on a mirrow.
Try, if can, to sit him/her on toilet at least once a day for up to a minute. No longer than that, as per 1 minute is long enough for a child who refuses sit there.
A cold fizzy drink could help move the bowels. Had worked with mine and its not everyday.

littone Fri 26-Sep-08 12:18:22

I don't have any experience, but I guess to start with he has to learn not to be scared of the toilet. Could you try sitting on the toilet (maybe lid down if scared of falling in?) no pressure with pants/trousers on, just so he knows nothing bad happens? Then progress from there maybe? You would obviously stay with him and then a small reward/sticker?? Is he able to explain why he feels scared?

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