Monday, February 08, 2010

A solution for bedwetting?

I've discussed our resident bedwetter (henceforth known as BW) before on the blog, although I still won't share any details as to who it is. :) I've been praying for months that I would be able to find a used bedwetting alarm--after all, if they work so well there should be lots of used ones available, right?

A few days ago I felt a prompting to check Craigslist for the alarms again...and sure enough one was listed! It's exactly the kind I'd been wanting to get except about half the price of buying it new. We picked it up on Saturday.

My BW was super-excited to try this out. He doesn't want to wet the bed any more than we want him too, so he was excited about this thing "that would help his body learn to get up and go to the bathroom."

My biggest concern with the alarms was that they're supposed to be pretty loud. I had tested it during the day Saturday and it didn't seem terribly loud but then we weren't all sleeping at the time either. Saturday night at 2am I heard a weird buzzing and woke up enough to realize it was the alarm. I hopped out of bed and went into the boys' room, half expecting my BW to be freaked out by the buzzing and vibration of the alarm on his shoulder.

Nope. Dead to the world. I had to shake him for a good 30 seconds to get him to wake up enough to get out of bed. ;) Thankfully everyone else stayed asleep too!

Since I wasn't keen on the idea of changing bedclothes in the middle of the night, we are using regular underwear with the alarm sensor clipped to them then a pullup over that. I figured this way I would only have to change his underwear and not all of the bedclothes (I don't really function all that well in the middle of the night so this is for everyone's benefit). So after BW went to the bathroom we swapped out the wet underwear and put on clean stuff and I sent him back to bed. I'm keeping a full change of clothes for him in the bathroom to make it faster and easier to get us both back to bed (without waking anyone else up).

Sunday night...alarm at 10:30pm and he was sort of groggily awake (but completely clueless as to what was going on).

Monday night...alarm at 1am he was up and walking to the bathroom before I made it into his room. Yay!!!

If I understand everything correctly, once he is consistently waking up to the alarm his body will start to learn to wake up before he starts peeing and he will be able to just get up and go without setting off the alarm. Right now he is still wetting a lot in the pullups, but that is supposed to decrease as we use the alarm.

Is it sad that the most exciting thing for me this weekend was buying a bedwetting alarm?? We did lots of other fun stuff, but by far I am most excited about this!


Rachel said...

That alarm thing sounds like a great idea. I worked at a childrens home a couple of summers and there were a few bws there too. One solution I only if you don't sleep all the way through the night...was to take the bws potty when I woke up during the night. I also heard that kids eventually will make a hormone that causes them not to produce urine at night...and some kids will start producing this earlier than's probably a genetic thing...which would explain why we had several bws in one family. I really like the alarm idea though and hope that solves the problem.

Courtney said...

We've tried getting him up when we go to bed but sometimes he wets the bed even before that! And even on the nights I could wake him up before he wet the bed, sometimes he would still wet the bed later. He's just a really, really heavy sleeper so I'm hoping the alarm can train his body to wake up! :)

Winnie said...

Isn't funny how different things make you happy when your a parent. Who knew a few years ago you'd be thrilled about a bed wetting alarm!

One more trick to avoid middle of night mayhem. Double sheet the bed. Make bed as usual, rubber sheet, make bed as usual. That way when there is an accident you can just strip the top layer and have the bottom layer ready to go. Though I think your underwear in the pull-ups thing is good for this phase though, a lot less laundry.

MamaPoRuski said...

This post should be labeled "You know you are a mother when..." I love the fact you are excited about it too. :) Praying for more success for you both!

Leah said...

We've used that alarm, and it works GREAT!! Usually 2-3 weeks and the problem is gone. Getting a child up in the middle of the night doesn't teach them to recognize that they have to go during the night, it just teaches them to wake up at a certain time of night! The alarm teaches their body to recognize when they have to go during the night, AND teaches them to NOT wet the bed. Most people do not have to wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. A few do, but no many. (and it's mostly women, although my husband wakes up once at night.) Most of the time, people who do have to go during the night, wake up FIRST as part of their sleep cycle, and while awake decided to go to the bathroom. It's not the need to go that wakes them up.

Anyway, we've used the alarm here. Best investment ever! We do have to go back to it once in awhile ( our bw'er is on HEAVY meds at night!) But usually one week back on the alarm and we're good for a couple of months.

Leah said...

Oh, I forgot to mention, we have two large soaker pads on the bd when we're having issues so when we do have an incident we can just pull that off and she can go back to bed! I get them at the bedwetting store, the same place I bought the alarm. You're not supposed to use it with a pull up because sweat can cause the alarm to go off, which isn't teaching them to recognize their body signals.

Bo Tai-tai said...

Hmm, I will have to consider that. We have a BW and I have paused in really dealing with that.

Natalie said...

Hmmm, the whole bw seems to run in our family, with the boys. One of the boy cousins was diagnosed with failure to produce enough anti-diuretic hormone. If you don't produce enough, then you can't possible go through the night without wetting. And if you are a hard playing, deep sleeping boy, you don't wake up to go, hence the bw.

We used GoodNights, plastic matress coversh and vitamen B. Different kids in the family have started to produce the hormone at different ages, one as late as 16, but when my oldest turned 10 it was like someone threw a switch. His body must have suddenly started to produce the hormone and that was it. I believe that there is now a nasal spray available by perscription which can also jump start the hormone production.

Good luck with the alarm, and I do not think it is at all sad that this makes you excited.