Unveiling the Secrets of Bladder Training for Nighttime Bedwetting

bedwetting; nocturnal enuresis

Wet Sheets No More: Understanding and Treating Bedwetting in Children and Adults

Bladder training is a cornerstone of bedwetting treatment, particularly for children. It involves a series of strategies designed to:

  • Increase Bladder Capacity: Gradually train the bladder to hold more urine.
  • Strengthen the Pelvic Floor Muscles: Improve bladder control by strengthening the muscles that help hold urine.
  • Develop Awareness of Bladder Urges: Teach children to recognize the feeling of a full bladder and urinate before wetting the bed.

1. Timed Voiding technique for for bedwetting

  • Timed Voiding with Gradual Interval Increases:

    This core technique is a workhorse for bladder retraining. Here’s the capacity-building twist:

    • Start with frequent urination intervals (every 1-2 hours). This allows your bladder to get used to emptying more frequently than it might be accustomed to.
    • Gradually increase the time between bathroom visits. As you progress, add 15-30 minutes to the interval between urinations. This pushes your bladder to hold a little more urine each time.
    • Listen to your body, but don’t ignore strong urges. If you feel an overwhelming urge to urinate before the scheduled time, go to the bathroom. Ignoring strong urges can lead to accidents and hinder progress.
    • Consistency is key! Stick to the schedule, even on weekends, to train your bladder to adapt to a new holding pattern.

2. Double Voiding technique for for bedwetting

  • Double voiding, as mentioned before, involves urinating twice before bed. Here’s how to modify it for capacity building:

    • First void: Empty most of your bladder.
    • Wait for 10-15 minutes, allowing your bladder to refill slightly. This time isn’t just about catching any leftover urine. It’s about gently stretching your bladder capacity.
    • Second void: Try to urinate again. Even if you only expel a small amount, it signals to your bladder that it can hold a bit more comfortably.

3. Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises (Kegels) for bedwetting

  • Kegel exercises strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which play a crucial role in bladder control.
  • For children: Explain Kegels in simple terms, like “squeezing the muscles you would use to stop yourself from passing gas.” You can incorporate playful activities like having them imagine holding in a balloon between their legs.
  • For adults: Kegels involve tightening the pelvic floor muscles as if you’re trying to stop urination midstream. Hold for a count of 5, then relax for 10. Repeat 10-15 times, aiming for 3 sets daily.

Kegels are essential for bladder control, but did you know they can also help with capacity? Here’s how:

  • Perform standard Kegel contractions: Tighten your pelvic floor muscles for a count of 5, then relax for 10. Repeat 10-15 times, aiming for 3 sets daily.
  • Incorporate “holds”: After contracting, hold the squeeze for a second or two before releasing. Gradually increase the holding time as your strength improves. This trains your pelvic floor muscles to support a larger bladder volume.

4. Positive Reinforcement techniques for bedwetting

  • Celebrate successes and milestones achieved during bladder training.
  • Use a reward system with stickers, charts, or small prizes to motivate your child and encourage continued progress.
  • Focus on positive reinforcement and avoid punishment for accidents.
  • Mind-body strategies like relaxation techniques and meditation can indirectly contribute to bladder capacity. By managing stress and anxiety, you can reduce the urge to urinate frequently, allowing your bladder to fill more comfortably.


    • Increasing bladder capacity takes time and consistent effort. Be patient and celebrate small victories.
    • If you experience pain or discomfort during any exercises, stop immediately and consult a healthcare professional.
    • These techniques might not be suitable for everyone. Consult your doctor to determine the best approach for your specific needs.

5. Fluid Restriction:

  • Limiting fluids, especially close to bedtime, can help reduce the amount of urine produced during the night and decrease the risk of bedwetting.
  • However, avoid excessive fluid restriction, as it can lead to dehydration.

Additional Tips:


  • Limit Caffeine and Carbonated Drinks: These beverages can irritate the bladder and increase urine production.
  • Empty the Bladder Before Bed: Encourage your child to urinate right before bedtime to reduce the amount of urine left in the bladder overnight.
  • Waterproof Pads: Waterproof pads can protect the mattress from accidents and provide a sense of security for your child. However, avoid using them every night, as this might discourage using the toilet at night.
  • Nighttime Waking: In some cases, setting an alarm to wake your child and take them to the bathroom during the night might be necessary, particularly during the initial stages of bladder training. Gradually decrease the frequency of nighttime wakings as bladder control improves.


  • Bladder training takes time and consistency. Be patient and supportive throughout the process.
  • If you have any concerns or questions about bladder training techniques, consult your child’s pediatrician. They can provide personalized guidance and support based on your child’s specific needs.

By implementing these bladder training techniques and fostering a positive and supportive environment, you can empower your child to achieve nighttime dryness and a good night’s sleep

To Read more on bedwetting

How to Stop Bedwetting?
Know more on Bedwetting, by Nationwide Children hospital,USA.
Bedwetting: 5 Common Reasons Why Children Wet the Bed

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