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How Chiropractic Care Can Help Manage Bedwetting

Published Date: 
November 7, 2023
Young boy who wet the bed.

Bedwetting, or nocturnal enuresis, can be an extremely frustrating part of childhood. The good news is it usually isn’t a cause for concern, but it can be highly embarrassing for children. And unfortunately, parents are often left lost for how to help their children. Some even make the mistake of disciplining or getting upset with their child. Chiropractic care can help manage bedwetting and improve the odds your child will make it through the night dry.

Chiropractic care is a safe, effective, drug-free option for treating bedwetting. Here's what you need to know.

Wetting the Bed Is Totally Normal

Bedwetting usually isn’t cause for concern. Most children have at least a few overnight accidents. If a child is wetting the bed before they turn seven, it’s totally normal. It takes years to master nighttime bladder control, and kids shouldn’t be expected to be completely in control early in life.

Toddler using a child potty.

If bedwetting continues beyond age seven, it might be time to consider a few changes.

First and foremost, remember that your child hasn’t done anything wrong if they have an overnight accident. Be patient and compassionate. It’s understandable why you might feel frustrated, but try not to show your frustration to your child. 

But remember, as frustrated as you are, your child is likely far more embarrassed and wondering why the problem occurs. Your job is to reassure your child that there’s nothing wrong with them, and no matter the cause, you’ll find a solution together. In many cases, all that’s needed is a few lifestyle changes to manage the problem.

Most children outgrow bedwetting eventually. You should consider contacting your pediatrician if your child:

  • Is still wetting the bed after age seven
  • Starts wetting the bed after several months of dry nights
  • Experiences painful urination
  • Is excessively thirsty
  • Urinates pink or red urine
  • Experiences hard stools
  • Snores
Little girl sleeping soundly with her mouth open.

The Chiropractic Approach to Managing Bedwetting

Chiropractic care can be a very effective option for managing nocturnal enuresis.

Chiropractic treatments focus on addressing the root cause of the issue. Medications for bedwetting often just mask the symptoms of the problem. They reduce urine output, which isn’t fixing anything – it’s just making it a little more likely they’ll get through the night. Setting a “wet alarm” alerts your child to the problem after it has occurred. It prevents them from sleeping in wetness but doesn’t help them learn proper bladder control.

On the other hand, chiropractic treatment can identify why a child is wetting the bed and attempt to correct that issue. They don’t focus on only the bladder. Chiropractic care is a holistic approach. It addresses whole-body health. Instead, chiropractors improve communication between the brain and body. They restore proper spinal alignment so information can travel through the nervous system as it should. This allows the nerves that play a role in the urinary system to function optimally.

At-Home Tips for Managing Bedwetting

There are several things parents can do to help manage bedwetting at home. For example:

Ensure Regular Trips to the Bathroom throughout the Day

Do your best to help your child avoid accidents while awake, and ensure they get used to using the bathroom at bedtime.

Avoid Fluids Before Bed

Cutting off fluids a few hours before bedtime allows your child to go to sleep with an empty bladder. Do your best to resist requests for bedtime glasses of water.

Be Patient and Emotionally Supportive

It’s frustrating to find your child wet in the morning or being woken up at night when there’s an accident. Try to put aside your frustration and offer your child the support they need during this challenge.

Implement a Motivational Rewards System

Rewarding your child for making it through the night dry gives them something for which to work. But remember that they can’t always control their accidents. You can recognize their success, but don’t shame them on nights when they don’t earn a reward.

Incorporating Chiropractic Care in Your Bedwetting Management Plan

Studies have shown that chiropractic care is an effective tool for your bedwetting management plan. One study showed that children aged four to 15 reduced their number of wet nights from seven to four.

Medical experts believe chiropractic care is effective because it improves the health and function of the nerves, which influence the bladder. Restoring normal spinal alignment and motion allows nerves to function. They are no longer stressed and can perform as intended.

Chiropractic adjustments are quick and painless. The chiropractor will manipulate your child’s spine by twisting, pushing, and pulling. There might be a popping sound, which is normal.

Little boy sleeping soundly in his bed.

Many children experience improvement after just one session. How many follow-up sessions you need depends on a variety of factors. Many children undergo a few regular chiropractic adjustments a week for a few months. In some cases, chiropractic treatments don’t completely fix the problem but can play an essential role in putting your child on the path to dry nights.

Chiropractic care also helps with stress and anxiety. Even if your child isn’t cured of bedwetting as a direct result of treatments, it makes dealing with the problem easier.

If you’d like to explore using chiropractic care to deal with bedwetting issues, find a chiropractor who is experienced working with children and, ideally, has experience dealing with bedwetting.

Dr. Eric Neumann D.C.

Dr. Eric Neumann grew up in Alberta, Canada where he majored in Chemistry at the University of Calgary. During his time at University, he obtained licensure as a Massage Therapist. It was clear that hands-on healing would be his calling. After suffering multiple sport-related injuries he became interested in Chiropractic. Dr. Neumann graduated from Western States Chiropractic College in 2009. He has since specialized in the treatment and management of acute spinal injuries.

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