Skip to content
    Select An Article

    Sleep Disorders: What Causes Bedwetting?

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    While bedwetting can be a symptom of an underlying disease, a large majority of children who wet the bed have no underlying disease that explains their bedwetting. In fact, an underlying condition is identified in only about 1% of children who routinely wet the bed.

    That does not mean that the child who wets the bed can control it or is doing it on purpose. Children who wet are not lazy, willful, or disobedient. Bedwetting is most often a developmental issue.

    Recommended Related to Sleep Disorders

    Night Walker: Restless Legs Syndrome

    For Walt Kowalski of Jackson, Mich., bedtime isn't the relaxing end to the day, but the beginning of another nerve-jangling night with restless legs syndrome. Soon after lying down, unpleasant electricity-like sensations creep into Kowalski's legs. An urge to move grows and becomes irresistible. The feelings force him to kick, move, or get up and walk. The unpleasant symptoms return and often keep him walking in the night, robbing him of sleep. Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is an often misunderstood...

    Read the Night Walker: Restless Legs Syndrome article > >

    Types of Bedwetting

    There are 2 types of bedwetting: primary and secondary. Primary means bedwetting that has been ongoing since early childhood without a break. A child with primary bedwetting has never been dry at night for any significant length of time. Secondary bedwetting is bedwetting that starts up after the child has been dry at night for a significant period of time, at least 6 months.

    What Causes Primary Bedwetting?

    The cause is likely due to one or a combination of the following:

    • The child cannot yet hold urine for the entire night.
    • The child does not waken when his or her bladder is full.
    • The child produces a large amount of urine during the evening and night hours.
    • The child has poor daytime toilet habits. Many children habitually ignore the urge to urinate and put off urinating as long as they possibly can. Parents usually are familiar with the leg crossing, face straining, squirming, squatting, and groin holding that children use to hold back urine.
    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    fatigued senior woman
    We’ve got 10 tips to show you how
    Man snoring in bed
    Know your myths from your facts.
     
    Young woman sleeping
    What do your dreams say about you?
    woman eith hangover
    It’s common, and really misunderstood.
     
    Young woman sleeping
    Quiz
    Cannot sleep
    Video
     
    child sitting in bed
    Article
    Woman with insomnia
    Quiz
     
    nurse sleeping
    ARTICLE
    Foods That Help Or Harm Your Sleep
    SLIDESHOW
     
    Insomnia 20 Tips For Better Sleep
    Slideshow
    Pain at Night
    ARTICLE