Night Time Wetting — The Bump
Pre-School

Night Time Wetting

I was going to post this on the potty training board, but it seems like most parents have younger kids... and it's probably quite a different situation with a preschooler.
My 4.5 year old son has been potty trained for a year and a half now during the day. But every morning he wakes up wet.
I'm out of ideas on how to help him, and honestly have given up hoping that some day he will wake up dry.

We limit drinks ~1hr before bed.
He pees right before bedtime.
He has a door directly to the bathroom, and I enourage him frequently that if he wakes up and has to pee to do so.
We tried a week or so in underwear, hoping that the feeling of wet would help - I got sick of doing laundry every morning.

What else can I do? I'm open to hearing whatever has helped for anyone else!
TIA!
Me: 29  DH: 33
Married April 1st 2017 <3
DS #1: May 2009 
DS #2: Jan 2012 

Re: Night Time Wetting

  • Nothing. You just have to wait until he's ready. Night time dryness is more about the physical ability to hold it all night or to be able to wake when he has to go. It's something that just develops with time. There are bed wetting alarms on the market that I suppose you could try. I didn't feel like it was worth it. DD1 was potty trained at 2.5 years and wasn't dry at night until she turned 6. DD2 was potty trained at just over 2 years, and at 3 years still wears a diaper at night. She just doesn't wake up when she needs to go.
    Annalise Marie 05.29.06
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  • Angela814 said:
    Nothing. You just have to wait until he's ready. Night time dryness is more about the physical ability to hold it all night or to be able to wake when he has to go. It's something that just develops with time. There are bed wetting alarms on the market that I suppose you could try. I didn't feel like it was worth it. DD1 was potty trained at 2.5 years and wasn't dry at night until she turned 6. DD2 was potty trained at just over 2 years, and at 3 years still wears a diaper at night. She just doesn't wake up when she needs to go.

    Really glad to hear that I'm not alone here. DS just doesn't wake up to go.
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  • DD just started at 4. She informed me that she was 4 and too big for pullups. I was terrified the 1st few nights, but she has done really well. Up till that point she was waking up wet every morning, so I'm not really sure what changed.
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  • My understanding is that waking to go is related to a developing hormone.  If that hormone is not developed they will not wake to go.  It's not about learning... they may be able to learn to hold it, but waking is due to maturity.  I'd let it go and not stress about it.  

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  • You've probably already gotten replies that say this, but I thought I'd weigh in because I've dealt with this with my son, and he's older.

    It's really difficult to potty train a child at night.  Night time wetting is completely physiological, and has to do with the balance between the child's bladder size, the strength of the signals that the bladder sends to the brain that tells a person to wake up and pee, and the soundness of the child's sleep.  My son wet the bed for many years after he was completely daytime trained because he was such a sound sleeper that his body's signals weren't strong enough to wake him up.

    My pediatrician said it would get better sometime between age 6 and age 10, and that he would outgrow it completely by age 12.  And she has been absolutely right.  At age 5, he wet the bed most nights.  By age 7.5, the pattern changed: he'd be dry for a few weeks then have 3 or 4 bad nights in a row.  Now, at 9, he wets the bed very rarely -- maybe once in 3 or 4 months.

    Here are some things I've done to help over the years:

    --don't scold, shame, or humiliate the child about it.  It's not something he can control.  Shaming him won't solve the problem, and it will only lead to him lying/hiding it
    --limit fluid after dinner
    --have your son pee before starting to get ready for bed, then pee one more time right before lights-out
    --have him pee right after he wakes up
    --use pull ups
    --when I got tired of dealing with pull-ups, I just used a waterproof mattress pad.
    --keep laundry that's been peed on separate from other laundry, run it through the washer on rinse with cold water first, then wash on hot with febreeze, dry with a dryer sheet.
    --use febreeze spray if the mattress, pillow, or stuffed animals wind up below the "high tide line"
    --a day of febreeze and strong sunshine will break down urine and help remove odors from stuffed animals and pillows.
    --reassure your son that he won't always wet the bed; that he'll outgrow it
    High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade
  • Neverblushed - thank you so much for your advice! Soooo helpful. He is such a solid sleeper (it's ridiculous!), that I think the connection from bladder to brain will have to be very strong before he learns to wake up.

    It's good to know that it's not something we do as parents...that's what my gut was telling me, but I wasn't sure if other moms had learned otherwise.
    Me: 29  DH: 33
    Married April 1st 2017 <3
    DS #1: May 2009 
    DS #2: Jan 2012 

  • DS will be 5 in March, and he still wakes up wet every day. Sadly, I was a bedwetter as a child, so I think he got it from me, sorry kid! : )
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  • This was DS and I'll offer hope b/c I wrote many desperate posts about this same issue!

    DS was 4.5 in December and still wet through a pull up everynight. But I thought that he was just peeing first thing in the AM..... So we decided to take him pee in the night and eliminate the pull up. It took about a month of setting our alarm to take him 3 times a night. Now, 7 months later, we will take him before we go to bed. He stays almost fully asleep and just pees and goes right back to bed. Once or twice a month he will still wet the bed. He is a sound sleeper and if he is overtired or had a little extra to drink accidents happen. 

     

    I am so thankful to not have him in pullups anymore. He was getting a rash everynight. 

    Try it and see how it goes!
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  • My almost 6 yr old still wakes up wet. Honestly I am not worried about it . He is not going to need a training pant in high school ; ). I will talk to his pediatrician about it at his 6 year, but he is just not ready. My oldest stayed dry starting at 4, and my youngest is dry most mornings since he was 2.

    My 4 yr old goes to bed still with water every night and wakes up dry or will wake up to use the bathroom. Ha, though during the day he tries too hold it and does not do as well ; )

    Right now I keep him in a training pant and it's not a big deal.
    Boy 1 2/06 - Boy 2 12/07 - Boy 3 9/09
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