Occasional bed-wetting is not a disease, and it does not have a cure. If the child has no underlying physical or psychological problem that is causing the bed-wetting, in most cases he or she will outgrow the condition without treatment. About 15 percent of bedwetters become dry each year after age six. If bedwetting is frequent, accompanied by daytime wetting, or falls into the American Psychiatric Association's diagnostic definition of enuresis, a doctor should be consulted. If treatment is indicated, it usually successfully resolves the problem. Marked improvement is seen in about 75 percent of cases treated with wetness alarms.
Although preventing a child from wetting the bed is not always possible, parents can take steps to help the child keep the bed dry at night. These steps include:
encouraging and praising the child for staying dry instead of punishing when the child wets
reminding the child to urinate before going to bed, if he or she feels the need
limiting liquid intake at least two hours before bedtime
Bed-wetting often leads to behavioral problems because of the embarrassment and guilt the child may feel. Parents should not attempt to make their child feel guilty about wetting the bed. They should let the child know that bedwetting is not their fault. Punishment is an inappropriate response to enuresis and will not resolve the problem.