How to Help a 13 Year Old Bed Wetter

November 16, 2018 4 min read

My son is 13 years old and continues to wet every night. Medicine helps some but does not regularly insure a dry night. He still cannot go to sleepovers or camp. Plus, I hate to keep giving him medicine for this. What can we do to help him stop?

Bedwetting can continue in 1-5% of teens. This does not sound like a lot, but if your son or daughter is in this 1-5%, It's a big deal. As you have seen, puberty does not "cure bedwetting, so there is no reason to wait for puberty before you start treatment

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

Solving the problem

Medical research on bedwetting continues to prove that the best permanent solution for bedwetting is obtained by using a bedwetting alarm. As you have observed, medication does not solve the problem but only provides a temporary fix. Alarms are perfect for sound sleeping teens who have no idea when wetting happens. Being alerted when the wetting occurs is the first essential step to learning to wake up to walk to the bathroom.

Moisture sensing bedwetting alarms sound when urine is detected. The teen and parents are alerted so they can begin to make the brain-bladder connection. Your teen may sleep through the loud alarm initially. That is how most users begin. A parent's job is to go to their room, wake them, have them turn off the alarm and walk to the bathroom.

Over time, the teens are able to learn what a full bladder feels like and that they must be in the bathroom before the urine is released. The good news is that bedwetting alarms work as effectively in teens as they do in younger children. It usually takes teens a little longer to get to complete dryness, but a few extra weeks to change a behavior that has been going on for years is quite manageable.

Recommended Alarm for Teens

The Rodger wireless alarm is my recommendation for teens. The sensor underwear fits just like regular underwear and is easy to put on, no matter how tired you are. A positive feature of wireless alarms is that your teen must get out of bed to turn off the alarm. Since the receiver is located across the room, it will continue to sound from that location until it is turned off.

Some tech savvy teens quickly disconnect the sensor from the alarms that are worn on the shoulder, then roll over and go back to sleep. Wireless alarms prevent this from happening.

If your room is on a different floor from your teen, you can get an additional receiver for your room so you can insure that he or she is getting up when the alarm sounds. A vibrating cushion can also be added to this alarm to shake the bed or pillow when the alarm sounds.

Guidance

Even if your teen has used some type of bedwetting alarm in the past, it is worth retrying this method with a good product. A bedwetting alarm is much different than setting an alarm clock. Wetting can take place any time during the night so it is impossible to predict when you would set the alarm clock to wake him exactly when he needs to urinate. My book, Seven Steps to Nighttime Dryness, outlines what to expect along the way and has a section devoted to teens.

Patience and Persistence

Your teen should wear the alarm every night when in your own home, until 14 consecutive nights of dryness are achieved. Finish by using the alarm every other night until an additional 14 dry nights are achieved. Remind him that permanent change takes time. His responsibility is to wear the underwear and turn on the alarm every single night. It will then be in place every night that he needs it.

If he uses the alarm intermittently, progress takes longer. It needs to sound every single time that he wets so his body will make a permanent change. To become completely dry, he will have some nights where he just gets up to urinate and some nights that he sleeps through until morning.

Other Strategies to Have in Place

Most families have tried these strategies but they bear repeating to make sure they are in place. 

Regular routine and bedtime

Double voiding 30 minutes before bed and again immediately before falling asleep

Drink throughout the entire day. This may mean taking a water bottle to school. Drink enough so that the bathroom needs to be used at least once, if not twice while at school.

Insure regular bowel movements, work with your health care provider to eliminate constipation

Do not punish or ridicule

A Recent Review by Billy T: 5 STARS

Outstanding Product. Cured Our 14-Year Old Son's Issue.

Comments about Rodger Wireless Bedwetting Alarm System: We tried three other alarms over a 5 year period. Nothing worked. We were ready to talk to a urologist for our 14-year old son who was still suffering with bedwetting. I then heard about this product. It was amazing. The wireless system is really important. My son was able to disable all of the other alarms without getting out of bed. Also the underpants are brilliantly designed. No clips or cords. The detection fibers are built in to the cloth of the underpants. No safety pins or uncomfortable fittings. It took a solid month, but he is now free of bedwetting. Follow all of the tips including issues re: constipation. We changed up my son's diet which I thing contributed to the success. I offer this my highest recommendation.


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