Bedwetting Causes

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Video Transcript

Hansa Bhargava, MD
Well, there's several reasons that can cause a child to wet the bed. The causes really are that the bladder is not mature. So it really hasn't built up the capacity to hold the urine, or know that it's full at night. Also sometimes the body produces a hormone that causes the urine to be decreased during the night for all of us, and that may not have happened in your child. So there are many causes, and remember, the other cause that's really important is genetics. If you had bedwetting as a child or your spouse had bedwetting as a child, 50% of your kids could have bedwetting. So remember that, and it doesn't mean that your child will have bedwetting forever. Most kids will outgrow it. In fact by 12, only 1% of children have bedwetting, one in a hundred. A full bowel can actually impact the ability of the bladder to retain urine or have bladder control at night. So if your child is constipated -- and a lot of kids are because they're not eating well, they're not eating enough fruits and vegetables, they're not drinking enough water -- you've got to get ahold of that issue. Know that a lot of kids have bedwetting normally, but also there are times when bedwetting is not normal. So one of the reasons a child can bedwet is if the child has sleep apnea. When a child has sleep apnea they can't really breathe properly at night, and that can cause disrupted sleep. So, when there is disrupted sleep, the child tends to sleep heavier in other periods, and that is one of the reasons a child could have bedwetting. So if your child is snoring and having bedwetting, those are reasons to see your pediatrician. Bedwetting can in certain cases be a symptom of the UTI, or urinary tract infection. So if your child is bedwetting -- has never done that before, or is doing it frequently and has other symptoms such as burning when they are urinating during the day, going to the bathroom a lot, feeling like they are not really emptying their bladder, abdominal pain, fevers -- those are the reasons that you should definitely go to see your doctor, to make sure it's not a urinary tract infection or any other serious cause.

So, although it's rare, we always want to make sure that a child is not affected by it. So make sure you talk to your pediatrician, and make sure that there's no other issues going on.