Bedwetting Needn’t Be a Dirty Secret but It Was for Me!
This week our guest blog has been written by Danny Spiers, Director of Astric Medical, who are a leading UK based bedwetting alarm company. Astric Medical have been in business for 60 years and cured in excess of 100,000 children. Read on for some valuable advice!
I wet the bed until the age of 11. To make matters more difficult, I was at a boarding school and slept in a room with 7 other boys. Bed linen was only changed every fortnight and pajamas once a week, so I spent 4 years of my childhood sleeping in dirty sheets, dirty pajamas and living in fear that my secret would be found out!
Why? Because nobody talked about bed wetting or really even thought about it unless they had a child who wet the bed. National bedwetting figures likely mean I wasn’t alone either! Worryingly things haven’t changed that much today despite the efforts of many to make a difference.
No one should live in fear for a minute, let alone 4 years! Bedwetting is no big deal…. after all it’s just wee! Over half a million children between the age of 5 and 16 regularly wet the bed and 30% of all children will have wet the bed frequently or infrequently at some point (N.I.C.E 2000).
Even with the right parental support, bedwetting can still be a big deal to a child and it shouldn’t be. Trust me, your bedwetting child will worry about sleepovers and school trips at the very least. My own son missed a school ski trip due to fear of being found out and teased.
The positive news is that tackling the issue is actually significantly easier than people think. There are two recommended approaches to treatment, these are bedwetting alarms or prescribed medication. N.I.C.E recommends alarms as the first line treatment for bedwetting. (NICE guideline CG111 published October 2010).
There are two types of bedwetting alarms on the market, bedside alarms and body worn alarms. One such bedside alarm, the ‘Astric Dry-Bed’, has a bedwetting cure rate of over 90% of patients within 8 weeks and comes with a 14 day ‘no quibble’ money back guarantee. This is manufactured by Astric Medical, who are a leading UK based bedwetting alarm company that has been been in business for 60 years and cured in excess of 100,000 children.
The benefits of bedside alarms over body worn alarms are threefold
- Comfort – As nothing touches the child, comfort of bedside alarms is high. Body worn alarms require attaching to the child who can find the sensor and alarm unit uncomfortable.
- Non-Invasive – A bedside alarm is completely non-intrusive. At no point does it touch the child. A body worn alarm must be attached to the child (generally neck or arm) and the sensor directly to pants or tight fitting pajamas. Children and parents often find body worn units intrusive, disruptive to sleep and a negative experience.
- A ‘normal’ sleeping experience – as a bedside alarm sits at the side of the bed, and the sensor mat is placed under where the child sleeps, the sleeping experience is ‘normal’.
With a 90% cure rate within 8 weeks, the initial investment in a bedwetting alarm can quickly be recovered through not having to continually wash bedding or spend on pull ups or specialist pyjamas.
As an 11-year-old, I was cured using a bedside bedwetting alarm and being cured was a revelation! It gave me the freedom to enjoy my latter years of school with no fear of night time or staying away from home.
Alongside choosing the right equipment for you and your child to cure bedwetting, what else can you do to help your child along the journey to a complete cure?
- It’s really important the child knows they haven’t done anything wrong. Don’t assume they know this, tell them!
- Ensure they know you are there for them, to help change the sheet and pajamas, to talk to and to make them feel safe and secure about bedwetting.
- If you wet the bed yourself as a child (and many of us did!), let them know. It’s an easy way for a child to understand that they are normal and it is ok.
- Bedwetting is treatable. Let your child know this, it can be a great source of comfort.
- In the middle of the night when changing the bed, don’t be cranky, you’re in this together, so don’t resent being woken up.
- Praise the child who actively wants to stop wetting the bed. Praise can be given for numerous things such as:
– Drinking the right amount during the day
– Going to the toilet before bed
– Helping to change bedding
– Being dry if following a treatment
- Take time to read about the causes of bedwetting and how to treat it.
- Read the ‘Tips to stop wetting the bed’ on eric.org.uk and follow their advice to have the best chance of stopping.
Talk to your child about stopping bedwetting and when they have decided that they want to stop, seek treatment. It is really important that your child is brought into the discussion as whatever treatment you choose, it can take time, patience and commitment from both you and the child.
I cannot stress enough how liberating it was to finally be dry at night. Whilst bedwetting is no big deal, the impact within a family can be significant due to broken sleep, the constant change of linens, and the stress of bedwetting which impacts on the child as well as parents and siblings. I urge you whatever route you choose to cure bedwetting to get it started as soon as possible and liberate you and your child going forwards. Your child deserves to be able to live without fear of a sleep over or school trip that includes a night away.
Author: Danny Spiers – Director
Astric Medical LTD.
For more information about Bedwetting and other incontinence problems please call Bladder and Bowel UK Helpline 0161 607 8219.