Can stress cause bedwetting?

Keeping your child free from anxiety could be the route to dry nights

3 min read 100%

Can stress cause bedwetting?

Keeping your child free from anxiety could be the route to dry nights

3 min read 100%

How stress and anxiety affect your child’s bedwetting

Most experts agree that emotional stress can be a trigger for children or teenagers to start wetting the bed, even when they have been dry for months, or years.

Big upheavals and stresses in a child or teen’s life, whether at home or at school, can help explain why they start bedwetting. You might hear healthcare professionals refer to this as ‘secondary enuresis’.

How does stress lead to bedwetting?

Vasopressin, the hormone the body produces that regulates how much wee we produce at night, is known to be adversely affected by anxiety. So, when a child is anxious, their body can run low on vasopressin, which in turn means they might produce too much wee for the bladder to hold at night.

Does bedwetting cause stress?

While stress and emotional upset can be factors in bedwetting, it’s also true that worry about wetting the bed, especially for older kids, can be stressful in itself, leading to a bit of a vicious cycle. Sleepovers, family visits and trips away can all cause extra anxiety and this in turn can affect a child’s quality of life and mental health.

Teens and bedwetting

It’s estimated that bedwetting affects as many as one in 75 teens. We all know puberty can be a difficult time and the causes of teen bedwetting are usually stress related.

Try to talk to your teen sensitively about their worries and reassure them that they are not to blame and that what they are experiencing is not unusual. Offer practical bedwetting advice for times they will be spending the night away from home.

5 bedwetting tips for kids away from home

Hatch a strategy together with your child for sleepover nights. Discuss ways they can manage the problem ahead of the event to help them worry less and have more fun.

1. Get kitted out

Help your child pack Huggies® DryNites® Pyjama Pants, plastic sheets, and any other products they find useful in managing bedwetting. For extra security, Huggies® DryNites® Bed Mats have a Stick & Stay Put adhesive layer that secures them to the bedding.

2. Keep protection private

If your kid will be using a sleeping bag, you could suggest they keep Huggies® DryNites® Pyjama Pants or spare pyjamas at the bottom to put on in private. Otherwise, they could use the bottom of the bed or a pillowcase.

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