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HealthInfo Aoraki-South Canterbury

Bedwetting & daytime wetting in children

Boy on bedWetting accidents are common in young children. Most wetting problems will go away by themselves in time. Other terms used to describe wetting accidents are enuresis (en-yur-e-sis) and incontinence.

Bedwetting is very common in younger children. Around 15% of 5-year-olds and 5% of 10-year-olds will wet the bed at least once a week.

Daytime wetting is considered to be a problem after the age of 5. Most children will be dry by the time they start school. Around 3 to 4% of children between 4 and 12 will have daytime wetting. Two-thirds of these will have bedwetting as well.

Who can help?

If your child is having difficulty with bladder control, talk to your GP. There are several support services available that can help.

Timaru Hospital bedwetting programme

An Enuresis Nurse runs a bedwetting programme one day a week for children over seven. Children are eligible for the programme if they wet at least three to four times per week. Phone 022-011-3227 to contact the nurse.

Public Health Nurse

Public health nurses can provide support for school-age children with some continence problems. Talk to your GP about this service.

Continence New Zealand

Continence New Zealand provides information and support to people coping with all forms of continence issues. Continence New Zealand also provides a freephone helpline for people with continence problems. Call 0800‑650‑659.

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Written by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed June 2016.


Page reference: 121593

Review key: HIUTC-12626