My 5th grader wets the bed every night, what’s the first step in getting to dry?

If your 5th grader wets the bed, it can be an embarrassing problem for everybody. The first thing you need to answer is if the child has ever been dry at night for a length of time. If yes, then your child may be experiencing secondary enuresis. If no, then it is called primary enuresis. Making this distinction will help you lay the foundations of what you can do to help your 5th grader stop wetting the bed.

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Some children start wetting the bed after a period of being dry because of sudden stress. Major stressful events may bring on the onset of bedwetting. This can be earthquakes, family tragedies, abuse and other situations.

If your 5th grader wets the bed suddenly after summer vacation, they might be scared about school. It might be their new grade, friends, a teacher, or any number of things. Keep an eye on your child’s grades and school work and notice any changes in the quality of work.

One of the best ways to get to the root cause is simply talk to them.  Ask them how school is going. Are there are any problems? Is there anything they want to talk about? If they won’t open up to you, perhaps a good friend, aunt or uncle may be able to get them to talk about it. Once they do, reassure them they have nothing to worry about. Everybody is nervous when starting a new grade or school.

If their bedwetting persists, there are some other things you can try.

Tips for 5th grader wetting the bed

Bedwetting alarms have a single purpose: helping wake your child up when they start to wet. They sound an alarm, vibrate, and even light up when wet. This helps the child to associate the alarm with wetting the bed. Over time they will get up faster when the alarm sounds. Alarms are most effective on children who have never been dry at night because they do not associate the sensation of a full bladder with needing to wake up.  It is more difficult to use an alarm for an older child who has been dry before, because they already know the signals, but don’t wake up.

Bedwetting diapers or underpants can be used for a period of time to help your 5th grade bedwetter sleep through the night. Because secondary enuresis is usually a symptom of stress, once that stress end, they may go back to being dry through the night. If it persists, a trip to your local pediatrician or family doctor is always a good idea to rule out any physical issues.

Above all, show patience for your 5th grader who is wetting the bed. It is an embarrassing issue for them, and they really need your love and support.