Daytime Fluid In-take and Bedwetting
If you are thinking of limiting your child’s daytime fluid in-take because of nocturnal enuresis (nighttime bedwetting), think again. Fluids are essential for your child’s general health, and most healthcare experts recommend drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water, evenly spaced out throughout the day. Restricting fluids during day may not necessarily reduce bedwetting episodes in night.
Instead, drinking less fluid during the day causes the bladder to fills more slowly, makes the urine more concentrated, reducing its capacity to hold urine and irritating its wall. Drinking more fluids during morning and early afternoons help your child’s body to produce more urine, increasing bladder capacity. Remember that bedwetting is not caused simply by having a full bladder overnight, but by failing to wake up to urinate when the bladder needs to be emptied.
Often children might end up drinking more water during late evening or toward bed time to balance out their dehydration during the day. Going to bed with an excessive water in-take may not be the best idea. Most experts suggest that drinking more water during the day and limiting fluid in-take 2-3 hours before bed time is advisable to control the nighttime wetting and by helping your child stick to a regular schedule, you can help train them to empty their bladder at the appropriate times throughout the day and night.
Drinking fewer fluids may also cause constipation, which is a major cause of enuresis (bedwetting) in children. When your child’s is not able to pass stool, a full rectum, irritates the bladder and reduces its capacity to hold urine and causes wet beds at night.
Restricting daytime fluid may not be the best solution to stop bedwetting at night. Let your child have adequate amount of fluids during the day and encourage good voiding habits to help keep the bladder relaxed. You might want to consider ‘timed voiding,’ that is encouraging your child to urinate before he or she feels the urge or rush to pee. For school going child you might will have to set a reminder either through a vibrating reminder watch, cell phone or stickers. Once at home remind your child to pee at regular intervals. Keep a journal to track your child’s daytime fluid in-take and ensure that he or she is drinking enough. You might have to try this technique for six months so be persistent.
‘Double Voiding,’ is another technique you can use to reduce bedwetting accidents. So, instead of telling your child to drink less water during the day, develop a habit of double voiding—urinating twice within few minutes. This technique helps to release any residual urine in the bladder. A bedwetting alarm is another best option to train them to stop bedwetting permanently.
Ensure your child voids first thing in the morning and last thing at night. While encouraging your child to develop good voiding habits, make sure they spend some time to completely empty the bladder.