Dr Catherine
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4-7 years

My 4 year old has been great with daytime toilet training since he was 2 years old. He had a few dry nights at 2 and half but i just had another baby and kept him in nappies and then he went on to continue wetting his nappy at night time. Since then he has not had any dry nights. I have tried him without nappies and he just sleeps through the wetness in his bed. I am worried that i missed the chance to night time toilet train him and he has gotten used to urinating in nappies now at night. I get him to wee before bed and then wake him up for a wee at 10pm but his nappies are still wet in the morning. Should i try him without nappies so he can realise he is doing it? My other baby is also now 2 1/2 yrs and dry at night so i want to praise him and stop him wearing nappies but i am worried how this will affect my 4yr old as he is still un nappies and i dont want him to feel inferior. Any advice pls. They are both happy and healthy kids. Thanks

It is always tricky when younger siblings achieve nighttime continence first – in these instances it is important to focus on all the things your eldest son does well, explaining that everyone is different and with time he too will become dry. You need to reassure him that you understand this is not his fault and that you are in no way disappointed or angry. In saying this, it is perfectly normal for him to be still wetting at night, with around 20% of 4-year-olds contusing to do so. Taking off his DryNites is unlikely to have much of an impact other than result in an increase in workload and potential distress. Children wet when asleep and therefore not in conscious control of their bladder, their body responds in much the same way regardless of whether they are wearing absorbent pants or underwear. If you are at all concerned about his wetting or if he continues to wet once he turns 6 than I would definitely follow this up with your GP.Kind Regards,