When you lie down to sleep at night, you probably don’t even think about the possibility of waking up cold and wet in the morning. Unfortunately, between 5 and 7 million children in the U.S. age 6 and older do.
Bedwetting, also known as nighttime wetting or nocturnal enuresis, occurs when a sleeping child cannot control their bladder during the night. There is no single cause for this involuntary urination, but researchers believe one of the most common reasons may be underdeveloped bladders. Other reasons can include children having trouble waking up at night if they need to go, the brain not producing enough of the hormone that reduces urine production at night or — in very few days — a medical condition. Bedwetting is hereditary, so if a child’s parents wet the bed there’s a higher chance they’ll experience it too.
Whatever the reason for bedwetting, experts agree that it’s not the fault of the child. “Every child would rather wake up dry than wet,” says Renee Mercer, MSN, a certified pediatric nurse practitioner at Enuresis Associates in Maryland. “They really try to stop wetting the bed, but it’s not in their control.”
Disposable Absorbent Underpants
Experts from the National Kidney Foundation note the benefit of using these products: “Using absorbent products at night to protect the bed will often reduce the frustration level of a parent and/or child waking to wet sheets.”
And although some parents may wonder if using these products will prolong nighttime wetting, Dr. Steven Docimo, head of the Urology Department at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, reassures that “there is no evidence that it takes longer to grow out of bedwetting if a child wears absorbent pants.” He confirms, “waking up in a cold, wet bed has no conditioning effect” and notes that disposable underpants make for “one less chore for parents in the morning.”
Bedwetting at a Sleepover
Nighttime wetting is a common problem that takes time to be resolved. But the good news is that 15% of children who wet at night outgrow the condition every year. Using absorbent products such as Goodnites® NightTime Underwear and Goodnites Bed Mats can help ease your child’s discomfort so they can wake up each day dry and worry-free.
These articles are not a substitute for medical advice, consult your doctor as needed.