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Enuresis In Children: Everything You Need To Know

With children around, waking up to wet blankets or bed sheets is nothing new. A vast majority of children, especially those below 4 years, tend to suffer from enuresis or urinary incontinence. Children with enuresis have a poor bladder control. As a result, such children often end up bedwetting in their sleep (nocturnal enuresis) or peeing in their pants which, at times, can be quite embarrassing for their parents. For all those parents who have to deal with enuresis in their children, here is a guide stressing upon some vital facts related to the condition, thereby helping the parents to cope with the situation better.

Enuresis- Types

Enuresis in children can be of four types, namely

Primary Enuresis: 

In the case of primary enuresis, the problem mainly surfaces in children who are yet to be trained or have not fully mastered the toilet habits.

Secondary Enuresis: 

Secondary enuresis is characterized by alternate periods of wetting and dryness in children.

Diurnal or Daytime Enuresis: 

As indicative of the name, in diurnal enuresis, children lose the bladder control mainly during the daytime.

Nocturnal or nighttime Enuresis: 

In contrast to the diurnal enuresis, children with nocturnal enuresis end up wetting the bed at night, mostly in their sleep.

What causes enuresis in children?

What is considered to be a common problem in children can have a myriad of underlying causes to it, some of which include

- Immense pressure on the bladder due to chronic constipation.

- Enuresis can be an outcome of some medical conditions such as Diabetes, Urinary tract infection, ADHD or Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, Obstructive sleep apnea.

- At times, severe stress and anxiety also contribute significantly towards enuresis in children, especially Diurnal Enuresis.

- An overactive bladder or a relatively small bladder size can also give rise to enuresis.

- Sometimes, a slower or stunted physical development of the body or abnormalities in the structure of the urinary tract can act as a wrecker in chief.

- Research suggests that in some cases, enuresis can be an outcome of a genetic predisposition.

- Parents also need to be a little careful because children who do not urinate as often as expected stand a greater risk of suffering from enuresis.

- Many times, a dip in the level of ADH or antidiuretic hormone (especially during sleep) is also responsible for enuresis in children.

- Increased intake of caffeinated drinks and beverages can also trigger enuresis in children.

Treatment and care:

Early detection of enuresis can go a long way to ensure significant improvement in the condition.

- Counseling sessions can go a long way to alleviate the condition of enuresis in children triggered by ADHD, stress, and anxiety.

- Medications are also available that can help to relax or soothe the muscles of the bladder. At times, medicines may also be given to enhance the level of the Antidiuretic Hormone (ADH) in the affected children.

- Parents may be advised to give the affected child less of fluids depending on when the child tends to lose the bladder control (in case of Nocturnal or Diurnal Enuresis).

- Waking up the child at night for urination can produce fruitful results in the case of nocturnal enuresis.

In addition to the treatment, some preventive measures and care can also alleviate the condition of enuresis in children significantly.

- Limit your child's intake of caffeinated drinks and beverages.

- Enrich your child's diet with more of dietary fibres and foodstuffs to keep constipation at bay.

- Take care that the child urinates frequently.

- Make sure that your child is happy and stress and anxiety free.  

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