All Pediatric Sleep Disorders Are Under Diagnosed In Primary Care Practices: Bedwetting is A Misunderstood Symptom

  • Harvard Medical School notes that sleep disorders are commonly encountered problems in pediatric practices, yet under recognized diagnosis sleep disorders.
  • Bedwetters do not often access REM sleep (dream sleep) throughout the night. This can give rise to daytime symptoms, which can include:  lethargy, hyperactivity,  ADD or ADHD characteristics, mood swings, reactions of frustration and anger, difficulty awakening in the morning. Often dark circles appear under the eyes  Daytime accidents, urgencies and frequency are caused from night wetting.
  •  Prescribed drugs do not end bedwetting.
  •  Restricting fluids does not end bedwetting.
  •  Psychotherapy does not end bedwetting.
  •  Sleep studies don’t even address bedwetting.
  •  The parent who experienced bedwetting is often suffering from the same sleep disorder which has taken on new symptoms;  sleep apnea, insomnia, sleep walking, adult ADD/ADHD.
  •  Bedwetters experience a type of sleep that can have NEGATIVE influence on daytime mental performance. 
  •  The psychological distress this disorder can cause is greatly overlooked.

The Untold Impact of Childhood Bedwetting in Later Life

PRWeb – Fri, Sep 2, 2011

New data, presented today at the International Continence Society (ICS) congress in Glasgow, suggest that bedwetting in children could be an indicator of future nocturia, the medical term for the complaint of needing to wake one or more times to pass urine at night, and bedwetting in adulthood.

Glasgow, UK (PRWEB UK) 2 September 2011

New data, presented today at the International Continence Society (ICS) congress in Glasgow, suggest that bedwetting in children could be an indicator of future nocturia, the medical term for the complaint of needing to wake one or more times to pass urine at night, and bedwetting in adulthood.

The new survey conducted by a German study group, set out to establish the extent to which there is a relationship between nocturia and a history of childhood bedwetting.

Questionnaires were answered by 1,201 adult subjects, and grouped according to those currently experiencing nocturia (53.4%), those reporting current symptoms of bedwetting (18.1%), and a control group (28.5%).

In comparison with the control group, it was demonstrated that bedwetting in childhood was a strong indicator for future bedwetting in adults (p<0.0001; odds ratio 9.841). Bedwetting in children was also demonstrated to be an indicator for symptoms of nocturia in later life (p=0.0747; odds ratio 1.351).

These results reinforce calls for the prompt and targeted treatment of bedwetting in children, not only to reduce the number of patients who continue bedwetting into adulthood, but also the number of people who go on to develop nocturia in later life.

Bedwetting adversely affects children’s general well-being and quality of life and, if left untreated, can persist into adulthood. Without treatment at least one in ten children will wet the bed for life. Indeed, these new results suggest as many as 18% may continue bedwetting into their adult life1.

Not treating bedwetting can also have a negative impact on a child’s mental health and lead to troubled social development.

Across Europe, it is estimated that more than five million children wet the bed.

In the UK, it is the most common chronic condition in children after asthma, affecting more than half a million five to 16 year-olds. As such, today’s data presents a stark warning about the potential for the condition to progress into adulthood, manifesting itself as either continued adult bedwetting or nocturia.

The importance of these findings are reinforced by additional research, also presented at this year’s ICS meeting. The Boston Area Community Health Survey questioned 5,503 adults, aiming to investigate the impact of nocturia on quality of life.

Worryingly, the study revealed the condition to have a comparable impact to other chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and arthritis. It also suggests the impact of repeated night time trips to the toilet significantly increases the likelihood of patients experiencing depression, especially among younger men and women.

“As many parents prepare for their children to go back to school after the summer holidays, bedwetting is often front of mind. It’s really important to remember that in most cases it is a treatable medical condition and that it’s not your child’s fault. The first step to helping your child and preventing future problems is to talk to your child’s clinician about the problem,” said Dr. Daniela Marschall-Kehrel, German Enuresis Academy. ”As this data shows, it is really important to seek treatment – both with regards to a child’s general well-being but also with an eye on reducing future health issues in later life”.

Bedwetting is the involuntary release of urine during sleep, occurring in children over the age of five and in the absence of any central nervous system defect.7 It is a common condition with similar prevalence rates worldwide.

Bedwetting is more common in boys than girls and, if untreated, 16% of all seven year-olds will still be affected.7 A misconception is that children will grow out of bedwetting but there is adult data to the contrary. Studies from Hong Kong indicate that 2.5% up to age 40 are still suffering from the disease, of which over 50% are having bedwetting three times or more every week. Today’s data add to the growing evidence base underlining the importance of treating bedwetting.1

Many parents lack awareness and understanding of bedwetting despite it being a chronic medical condition. Almost half of parents ignore the problem, whilst nearly a third delay action until the child is wetting the bed at least five times a week . Furthermore, 80% mistakenly believe stress and worry are the major causes of child bedwetting.9

The reality is that, in the majority of cases, bedwetting is a disease which can be treated effectively and permanently.

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New Poll Shows Few Understand Bedwetting

NEW YORK, Dec. 12, 1996– Five to seven million children wake up every morning in a wet bed. A new survey of 9,000 families found that despite the prevalence of the condition, only some parents understand that bed-wetting, medically known as primary nocturnal enuresis (PNE), may be a medical –not behavioral– condition that can be treated. Nearly half the people surveyed (47 percent)A mistakenly believe bed-wetting, or primary

nocturnal enuresis (PNE), is a condition associated solely with drinking too many liquids before going to bed. “Although limiting liquids with caffeine before bedtime should be encouraged, parents should understand that bed-wetting may be a common medical problem, and their child’s physician is the best source of information about treatment for

a bed-wetting child,” confirms Marc Cendron, M.D., Pediatric Urologist at Dartmouth- Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire.

“Last year at my son’s school physical, we were pleased to discover that there are treatments available for bed-wetting,” said Mrs. Dillehay, a Tennessee resident and mother of two. “Treating my son’s bed-wetting problem has changed his whole outlook on life; he can now attend sleepovers and the entire family doesn’t worry about his condition anymore.”

Other Findings, According To The Poll:

MYTH: Child wets the bed on purpose.

FACT: Bed-wetting is not the child’s fault, and is known to run in families. In

fact, researchers have identified the first direct genetic link to PNE on a single

region of chromosome 13. “We now have scientific evidence that many cases of bed-wetting are caused by genetic factors beyond a child’s and parent’s control,” said Hans Eiberg, associate professor at the Danish Centre for Genome Research, who discovered the specific genetic marker. Research suggests that if both parents have a history of bed-wetting, their child has a 77 percent chance of wetting the bed. If only one parent was a bed-wetter, a child has a 44 percent chance of wetting the bed. There is only a 15 percent chance of a child bed-wetting if neither parent has a history of the problem.

MYTH: Child is lazy.

FACT: While the exact cause of PNE has not been identified, research indicates that bed-wetting is usually a physiological and not a behavioral problem. Recent studies have found that some children who wet the bed lack a normal increase in antidiuretic hormone (ADH), which controls urine production at night. “In non-bed-wetters, ADH levels increase at night, leading to a decrease in urine production. In some bed-wetters, there is no increase, or it’s insufficient, resulting in an overproduction of urine and, thus, bed-wetting,” said Lane Robson, M.D., Pediatric Nephrologist at The Children’s Hospital in Greenville, South Carolina.

” Twenty-one percentA of parents surveyed say they punish their child when he or she wets the bed. “There is absolutely no role for punishment in the

treatment of bed-wetting,” said Dr. Greer.

Source: Ellie Schlam of the National Kidney Foundation, or Kathryn Metcalfe of

Noonan-Russo Communications