Skip to content

Children's Health

Font Size

Bed-Wetting - When To Call a Doctor

Call your doctor if:

  • Your child has signs of a bladder or kidney infection or other symptoms, such as back pain, abdominal (belly) pain, or fever. Signs of a bladder or kidney infection include:
    • Cloudy or pink urine or bloodstains on underclothes.
    • Urinating more often than usual.
    • Crying or complaining when urinating.
  • Your child age 4 or older is wetting the bed and is leaking stool. The child may have stool blocking the intestines camera.gif, caused by having constipation over a period of time.
  • Your child wets the bed more frequently while you are using home treatment for bed-wetting.
  • Your daughter older than 5 or your son older than 6 has never had bladder control for more than 3 months in a row after trying home treatment, and it is causing problems at school or in the child's relationships with family and friends.
  • Your child who has had bladder control for at least 3 months has begun to wet the bed, and this has happened more than a few times.

If your child wets the bed but has no other symptoms, and you have tried home treatment without success, the doctor can recommend other methods of treatment.

Watchful waiting

Watchful waiting is appropriate if bed-wetting is not affecting how your child is doing with schoolwork or getting along with his or her peers or family. Most children develop complete bladder control even without treatment. Home treatment may be all that is needed to help the child learn bladder control.

Watchful waiting may not be appropriate if bed-wetting starts after a child has had bladder control for a period of time. Look for possible stresses that might be causing the bed-wetting. Bed-wetting may stop when your child's stress is relieved or managed. If it does not, your child should see a doctor. For more information, see:

Bed Wetting: Should My Child See a Doctor?

Who to see

The following health professionals can evaluate and treat bed-wetting:

The following specialist(s) may be required if your child has medical or emotional conditions:

To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: October 24, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    1
    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    child with red rash on cheeks
    What’s that rash?
    plate of fruit and veggies
    How healthy is your child’s diet?
     
    smiling baby
    Treating diarrhea, fever and more.
    Middle school band practice
    Understanding your child’s changing body.
     

    worried kid
    fitArticle
    boy on father's shoulder
    Article
     
    Child with red rash on cheeks
    Slideshow
    girl thinking
    Article
     

    Loaded with tips to help you avoid food allergy triggers.

    Loading ...

    Sending your email...

    This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.

    Thanks!

    Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

    babyapp
    New
    Child with adhd
    Slideshow
     
    rl with friends
    fitSlideshow
    Syringes and graph illustration
    Tool