Diurnal enuresis (daytime wetting)

What is daytime wetting (Diurnal Enuresis)?

Daytime wetting, also know as Diurnal Enuresis, is defined as the uncontrolled passing of urine that occurs after the age of 5. This can occur in the day or at night. Daytime wetting can occur on its own or with bedwetting too. Enuresis can be distressing for children at any age.


daytime wetting

What causes daytime wetting?

There are a number of reasons daytime wetting can occur.

  • Drinking very little can lead to a small bladder that cannot hold very much urine. This can encourage the feeling of needing to use the toilet frequently.
  • Children might forget to go to the toilet because they are concentrating on other tasks. As a result, they may end up emptying their bladder before reaching a toilet.
  • Constipation, considerable amounts of faeces in the bowel means the bladder cannot fill to a normal size. Therefore, it holds less urine and leads to more toilet runs, poor bladder emptying and an increased risk of accidents.
  • Bladder instability can mean that there is poor coordination between the muscles of the bladder. The bladder may also be overactive meaning the muscles twitch.
  • A UTI can also cause daytime wetting. Cloudy, smelly urine, feeling sick, pain in the tummy and a temperature are symptoms that people need to look out for. If they do experience any of these, patients should seek medical attention.

How can daytime wetting be prevented?

Drinking plenty of water. - A child should drink approximately 6-8 glasses of water-based fluid every day.

Avoid caffeinated drinks such as tea, fizzy drinks and coffee as they cause an overactive bladder to misbehave.

Encourage your child to pass urine every 3 hours during the day. A reward scheme can aid encouragement!

Eating healthily can help you avoid constipation, which is beneficial as constipation can worsen wetting.

Double voiding - When your child believes they have completely emptied their bladder, you can ask them to stand up for 15 seconds. Then ask them to attempt to empty their bladder one more time. It is important they do not push too hard.

Some children are not able to empty their bladder successfully on the first try.

How can daytime wetting be treated?

Medications such as Tolterodine and Oxybutynin can be given by the doctor to help relax the muscles of the bladder. It's best to consult with a paediatrician or urologist to discuss appropriate treatment.

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