Help! My 6 year old daughter will not stop playing to use the bathroom. When she squirms, I remind her to go. She reluctantly stops and always has a lot to pee out. But if I don’t remind her, she will sometimes wet herself when she is only a few feet from the bathroom. I had her urine checked, which is fine. I’ve tried rewards, punishment, and praise. What do you recommend?
I know this is frustrating, but here are 6 tips that should help.
Make sure she is not constipated. Increase fiber and pay attention to when she has stools. Having a full bowel can decrease the sensation from the bladder and can decrease the amount of urine her bladder holds.
Make sure she drinks enough water throughout the day. Beverages with citrus, sugar and food coloring can make the bladder more irritable.
Implement a timed voiding program. Your daughter will be reminded to urinate at regular times, usually two hours apart. Her job is to go to the bathroom when she is reminded, even if she does not feel the need to do so. It’s best if the reminder is not you and if it is something portable.
Use a vibratory wrist watch as her discreet reminder. The VibraLITE Mini is a great vibratory reminder watch for girls her age. The other children will not know that this watch reminds her to go to the bathroom. Make sure she wears her watch every day, even weekends.
Reward cooperation. If she consistently goes to the bathroom when the watch vibrates, she can get a sticker or token. Following through when the watch reminds her to use the bathroom is something that she has control over. By cooperating, the ultimate reward will be dry underwear.
Wear the watch for several months. Over time, her bladder will begin to get the feeling of being emptied on a regular schedule, rather than becoming overfull and leaking.