Dr Catherine
< Back to Expert Answers
8-15 years

Hi My step son is 11 and is still wetting the bed nearly every night. Is this normal for his age and is there anything we can do to help him get over this phase as he finds it very embarrassing. He is gettinf the the age where his friends are inviting him over for sleepovers and i dont want him to feel like he cant go as he is embarrassed

The older children the less likely bedwetting will resolve itself without the support of intervention. Conditioning alarms currently experience the greatest success when it comes to treatment options with around 75% of children experiencing dryness following treatment. The treatment cycle can take up to 16 weeks so it does take a great deal of commitment on behalf of the child and the family. there are many different types of alarms available so it is a good idea to chat with a continence nurse specialist who can help you to select the best one for your son. Some alarms have different settings that allow you to vary the sound – sometimes a louder alarm will raise a particularly deep sleeper. Others include a vibration option, which your son may respond to more easily. The is a nasal spray medication available which is like 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. It can be particularly useful for situations like sleepovers and school camps – as it is very important that children do not restrict their social activities as a result of their bedwetting. This form of treatment has met with more success when used in conjunction with a bedwetting alarm so that may be a better way to go. Given his age and the impact his bedwetting is starting to have on his self-esteem now is the perfect time to get serious about treatment!All the best,