Bed wetting can become an issue in some households, upsetting children and disrupting sleep. Midwife, maternal and child health expert Midwife Cath has collaborated with BabyLove on a range of tips to assist parents and their children through this natural stage of infant development.
“My advice to parents is to remember that children parented with anxiety, grow up with anxiety,” says Midwife Cath. “As a parent, we should try to be supportive and calm whilst our child navigates this natural stage of development.”
- It’s not abnormal for infants to experience bed wetting
- Each child will develop at their own stage, and girls tend to develop a little faster.
- Children up to age 5 will often wet the bed, and it’s not unusual for older children to continue to wet the bed occasionally.
Midwife Cath’s 6 Tips for Bed Wetting and Toilet Training
- Remember it is normal! Communicate this to your child so they don’t feel upset, embarrassed or anxious
- Eliminate potential causes of bed wetting such as intestinal worms or a urinary tract infection
- Bed time rituals. These can range from no drinks for 1 hour before bed, going to the toilet immediately before hopping under the sheets, and leaving a soft light in the bathroom so children feel safe visiting it
- Don’t reward children for using the loo. This can place too much pressure on children
- Let children develop at their own stage. They will have a bowel movement in a nappy and not like it
- Use overnight pants. Sleeping in highly absorbent pants is a great transition between nappies and underwear, as they offer good protection and children learn to pull them down to use the toilet.
More tips for parents:
- If your bub is a bed wetter, try the “double sheet” method. Make the bed with two mattress protectors and two sets of sheets, so if an accident or leakage does occur, you can easily strip the soiled linen back and have a fresh set of dry sheets underneath.
- Use an overnight nappy pant for protection, one specifically designed for ‘overnight’ for its higher absorbency. A super absorbent core is paramount, as this will keep your infant feeling dry.
- Remember that being toilet trained by day does not always equal dry nights. Some children will need overnight protection well after they can use the toilet or potty during the day.