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Bedwetting Pills Did Not Work-Now What?

June 21, 2023 2 min read

“My 10 year old daughter has had bedwetting her whole life.  Our pediatrician gave her a prescription for desmopressin pills.  We were hoping these would solve her bedwetting, but she still wets even after taking 3 pills before bed.  We’re at our wits end.  What should we do now?”

Less Urine Produced When Med is Taken

Bedwetting pills, most commonly desmospressin, do not work for everyone.  Their method of action is to decrease the amount of urine produced in the 10-12 hours after the pills are taken. The urine is more concentrated and is less in amount.  Less volume means that the bladder has less to hold and in some children, enables them to have a dry night that night.  In children who can stay dry with these pills, special occasions like camp or sleepovers can be achieved.

Having a large amount of urine may not be the only reason your child wets at night.  Constipation, which contributes to wet nights, is not changed with desmopressin. This could be one reason that your child continues to wet and should be addressed with your health care provider.

Temporary Fix

Pills are a temporary solution because the nights that the medication is not taken, the body returns to making a larger amount of more dilute urine. If no other changes have been made, children resume wetting on the nights no medication is taken.

A More Permanent Fix

There is another solution to your daughter’s bedwetting.  Using a bedwetting alarm provides a permanent cure.  Once your daughter learns how to wake up to the feeling of a full bladder, she will no longer wet.

Girls your daughter’s age are happy to use the Rodger wireless alarm, which senses wetness and then alerts them using a loud sound.  The receiver that sounds is plugged into a wall outlet and requires that your daughter get out of bed to turn it off.  The moisture sensing underwear is like regular cotton underwear, and is comfortable and easy to use.  Over time, as your daughter gets used to getting up when she is wetting, her body will begin to wake her before she wets. 

Many older children have become dry when using a bedwetting alarm. This does require effort from both child and parents but is worth it to have consistently dry nights. There is no reason to wait any longer for her to “outgrow” this problem when you have a permanent solution.  Don’t be discouraged just because the pills did not work for her.



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