Common Treatments


If your child doesn’t seem to be growing out of their bedwetting stage yet, you may want to try some common bedwetting treatments to manage things in the meantime. Most are simple and non-invasive and could see you waving goodbye to wet sheets within a few weeks.

Bedwetting is a completely normal thing to be going through and it will pass eventually. However, many parents and children understandably want to hurry the process along a bit.

What causes bedwetting?

If your child is going through a bedwetting phase, you’re probably wondering what’s causing it. The short answer is that it’s usually down to a minor developmental delay, which will straighten itself out over time. It’s quite rare for bedwetting to be caused by an underlying medical condition. The most common form of bedwetting is called primary nocturnal enuresis. This refers to when a child has never been dry at night. Common causes are things like genetics, a neurological development delay between the bladder and brain, or the underproduction of the antidiuretic hormone ADH that signals to the kidneys to produce less urine at night. The other type of bedwetting is secondary nocturnal enuresis. This refers to a child who has been dry for six months or more, and then starts to wet the bed. This is typical the result of underlying medical issues or by emotional factors. For children with primary nocturnal enuresis, it means your child’s bladder capacity has not developed to the point of being able to hold urine overnight. Children who wet the bed at night may have a nervous system that is slow to process the feeling of a full bladder. So your child does not wake up or respond to the messages sent from their bladder to their brain saying its full and needs emptying. As their body matures the messages sent from the bladder start to get through and your child learns to wake and go to the toilet. Most children who experience bedwetting haven’t reached this developmental stage yet. But don’t worry, they’ll get there soon. While deep sleeping certainly plays a role in bedwetting it is not the primary cause of why it happens in the first place. Deep sleeping just makes it even harder for children to response to the signal sent from their bladder telling them to ‘wake-up’. Secondary nocturnal enuresis is a little more complex. If your child has been dry at night for six months and they relapse back to bedwetting, it’s often a sign of emotional problems or stress. Common catalysts include big events, such as moving house, a new sibling, or starting school. Stressful situations, including tension in the home, death of a family member or pet, or being bullied at school can also cause your child to start wetting the bed again. Other causes of secondary bedwetting include minor medical conditions, such as constipation or a urinary tract infection. In very rare cases, bedwetting can be caused by diabetes. One thing to remember through all of this is that the cause is never laziness. It’s important to remain calm and not to take out any frustration on your child, even though it can be a real pain to change sheets every night. Provide some extra support to your child by using DryNites® Night Time Pants or BedMats. It gives them a little more independence and they’re an effective safety net at night.

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Common Bedwetting Treatments


Bedwetting Alarms are probably one of the most effective treatments on the market, as they actually condition your child to wake up with a full bladder. A sensor will alert your child as soon as it detects the first drop of urine, allowing them to visit the bathroom to finish the job.

We’ve got heaps more information on our bedwetting alarms page, which you should take a look at if you think this method could work for your child.


Bladder training exercises can be easily done at home to increase bladder capacity and improve bladder control. While not technically a cure, many parents report positive results after a few weeks. These exercises are simple and safe, but you should still get the all clear from your doctor first.

For details on the different bladder training exercises and how to do them, visit our bladder training information page.


Medication such as Desmopressin (a synthetic ADH) is recommended for some children who wet the bed. Medications are not as effective as bedwetting alarms, however a combination of medication and a bedwetting alarm have shown to be helpful for some children with more severe symptoms.

Medication is only recommended for children aged 5 years and older. The use of medications to treat bedwetting should always be discussed with your doctor.


Enuresis clinics are a good place to start if none of the common bedwetting treatments have had success at home. Clinics are usually staffed with doctors, nurses, and continence advisors, who will get to the root cause of your child’s bedwetting and treat it directly.

If you’re looking for more information about how enuresis or bedwetting clinics work, check out our enuresis clinics page.


Looking for further bedwetting help and support? Start with our bedwetting resources page for some useful links and free helpline information.

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DryNites® Night Time Pants are a discreet, comfortable and absorbent form of bedtime protection.

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