Dr Catherine
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8-15 years

my son is 12 hes been taking pills for almost six months three a night till he was good then we lowered it to two til we got to one we've just recently had to up it back up to three again due to him wetting the bed every night again...... is there anything else i can do to help? I'm at a loss here.

A small number of children wet the bed because they do not produce enough of the anti-diuretic hormone ADH. If nighttime ADH levels are low, children produce the same amount of urine at night as throughout the day. If this is the cause, children will continue to wet the bed at night until their body begins to produce more of this hormone. The medication you refer to is a synthetic version of ADH (antidiuretic hormone), which is designed to inhibit the amount of urine produced by the kidneys overnight. While some children do stop wetting the bed after its use, a common problem with this form of treatment is that once children stop the medication the bedwetting often resumes. If you are looking for an alternate form of treatment I would recommend pairing this with a conditioning alarm. Bedwetting alarms work by setting off an alarm when the child starts to wet, waking them up so that they get up and go to the toilet. Over a period of time this conditions the body (and child) learns to wake without the need for the alarm. It is not unusual for the alarm not to work at first and may take up to 6 months of constant use. Children may experience one or two relapses, when this occurs you need to reintroduce and repeat the process. It may be helpful to get your son to practice setting the alarm off during the day (with a drop of water) so that ways he will become familiar to the sound of the alarm. In the meantime reassure him that this is in no way his fault and that with time (and perhaps a little bit of help) he will become dry! All the best, Dr Cathrine