what is the best bedwetting alarm in australia (4)

What Is The Best Bedwetting Alarm In Australia?

At first nocturnal enuresis (best known as bedwetting) sounds like a disease, but it’s not. Even so, in some children it can cause serious embarrassment and poor self-esteem. Nocturnal enuresis, in layman’s terms, is bedwetting. If you have a child over the age of six who is wetting the bed, you may have tried everything and now you are wondering if there is any help. There is, and it’s called a bedwetting alarm. One of the main causes of bed wetting in children is a combination of deep sleeping patterns and over production of urine. Making use of the best bedwetting alarms can help teach a child’s body to better respond to a full bladder, as well as help break the deep sleep cycles that are typical of this behaviour. An electronic bedwetting alarm sounds an alert as soon as a child begins to urinate. 

Bedwetting alarms are designed to assist bedwetters in training their brains to react to their full bladders by awakening and using the toilet. A bedwetting alarm “senses” moisture as the first drops of urine are released, and sounds a shrill alarm, waking the child. A feeling of bladder fullness will eventually replace the sound of the bedwetting alarm as the signal to the sleeper’s brain that it’s time to get up and visit the toilet. Bedwetting alarm therapy is actually a type of behavioral conditioning.

Causes Of Bed-Wetting

Many children who wet the bed produce more urine than their bladders can hold overnight. This can be because they don’t produce adequate amounts of antidiuretic hormone to reduce their production of urine while sleeping.

Your child may also be at higher risk of bed-wetting if:

  • they sleep very deeply and are not awakened by the message from their bladder telling them that it is full;
  • they have a small or overactive bladder that is less able to store urine; and/or
  • there is a family history of bed-wetting.

Rarely, a medical condition, such as infection, diabetes or a problem with the bladder, may be causing bed-wetting.

Bedwetting alarms work by setting off an alarm when they detect moisture. A bedwetting alarm teaches children to become aware when their bladder is full and to wake up and use the toilet.

Using a bedwetting alarm requires a sustained effort over many weeks (perhaps as long as two to three months) and it is not an option that works well with a casual approach.

Yes, and you will need to decide on the best approach for your child: 

  • one is a personal alarm with a small sensor used close to the body and linked to an alarm unit worn on the body
  • the other is a bell and pad alarm which involves placing a mat over the bottom sheet that is covered with a small drawsheet. This is connected to an alarm box placed at the foot of the bed.

Your family doctor or a continence health professional can help advise you on which alarm is most suitable for your child.

It is important that both you and your child are properly taught how to use the alarm and have someone to call if you are having difficulties. Your aim should be to have your child use the alarm as independently as possible according to their ability. All children benefit from parental encouragement and support throughout an alarm-based program. You will also need the guidance and support of a trained health professional, as this is a key element in the success of this treatment.

Using an alarm reduces bedwetting in about two thirds of children during treatment, and about half the children remain dry after stopping using the alarm.

Bedwetting alarms are usually recommended as the first treatment for children who are 7 years or older.

Use the Bathroom Often: Have your child use the bathroom when they start to get ready for bed, then again the minute before they get into bed. This helps to empty their bladder. If you're still awake an hour or two after your child's bedtime, think about waking them for a quick bathroom visit.

  • Patience to reduce bed-wetting
  • Limit fluids in the evening. It's important to get enough fluids, so there's no need to limit how much your child drinks in a day.
  • Avoid beverages and foods with caffeine.
  • Encourage double voiding before bed.
  • Encourage regular toilet use throughout the day.
  • Prevent rashes.

Deep sleep isn't a cause of bedwetting, but it is more common for children who are deep sleepers to wet the bed, and may take longer to treat. Using a bedwetting alarm is still the best deep sleep bedwetting solution. These special approaches will help your heavy sleeper become dry at night.

To combat bed-wetting, doctors suggest:

  • Shift times for drinking.
  • Schedule bathroom breaks.
  • Be encouraging and positive.
  • Eliminate bladder irritants.
  • Avoid thirst overload.
  • Constipation may be a factor.
  • Don't wake children up to urinate.
  • An earlier bedtime.

The most important thing to remember is that no one wets the bed on purpose. It's something you can't help doing. For some reason, kids who wet the bed can't feel that their bladders are full and don't wake up to pee in the toilet.

See your doctor if your child:

  • is older than 6 -7 years of age;
  • starts wetting the bed again after a period when they were dry at night;
  • has problems with bladder control during the day after the age of 3 to 4 years;
  • has other symptoms such as painful urination or unusual thirst; or
  • is bothered by their bed-wetting and wants to become dry.

FAQs About Bedwetting Alarm In Australia

Effects Of Bed-Wetting On Children

Bed-wetting can cause feelings of anxiety and embarrassment and lead to low self-esteem. Older children may worry about wetting the bed during sleep overs or at school camps. Bed-wetting can also cause sleep disruption and tiredness.

It’s important for parents and carers to stay patient. Bed-wetting is not a behavioural problem, and your child is not wetting the bed on purpose. Don’t be critical or punish your child for wetting the bed as this can make the problem worse. Siblings need to know that it’s not okay to make fun of the situation.

Bed-Wetting Treatments

Most children become dry at night on their own without needing any treatment. However, if you (or your child) are frustrated by bed-wetting, several treatment options are available.

Bed-Wetting Alarms

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Bed-wetting alarms are designed to wake your child when urine is first passed. The idea is that the child wakes, stops urinating and then goes to the toilet. These alarms are an effective long-term treatment for bed-wetting, but it can take at least 2 weeks to see a response, and up to 12 weeks before children are completely dry at night.

This is the classic bed-wetting alarm, and is considered by those in the know, as the most straightforward and effective way to help your child get dry, and to keep him dry. The rubber pad, which slides in between the mattress and bottom sheet, and bell works by going off - very, very loudly - when urine hits the pad. This will (hopefully!) wake your child and, over time, teach him to wake when his bladder is full. While extremely successful for many children, this treatment can take many weeks to work, (on average children need to use the alarm for at least 10 weeks, and many need it for several more months) so only start this treatment when you're ready to put in the hard yards.

  • TIP!
    • If your child is a deep sleeper, you may have to wake him up when the bell rings for the first few nights. Most deep sleepers then get used to responding to the sound of the bell.

Body Sensor Alarms

These alarms aren't as loud the pad and bell alarms and so are a little kinder to the family. Body sensor alarms work by securing a sensor between two pairs of underpants (that your child is wearing) and then threading the attached cord up through his pyjamas and fixing the bell either to his pyjamas top or on his pillow. Bell will be triggered - which, again, will wake your child - when the sensor picks up moisture in the underpants.

Medicines

Medicines are generally only used in children who don’t respond to a bed-wetting alarm. Sometimes treatment can involve medicines and a bed-wetting alarm together. One option is a medicine called desmopressin (brand name Minirin), which can be given as tablets, a wafer or a nasal spray. It works by reducing the volume of urine produced at night. It tends to work well in the short term, such as for school camps, but must be used with caution. Oxybutynin (e.g. Ditropan) is a medicine that can be used to reduce bladder contractions and increase bladder capacity in children with small, overactive bladders.

This is a man-made form of anti-diuretic hormone (ADH) that works by substituting for the natural hormone. It will help your child's body make less urine at night, and so reduce the risk of his bladder overfilling during sleep. DDAVP is usually reserved for children who have failed previous treatment with a bed-wetting alarm, and sometimes the two treatments are then given together. Some children only use the medication for sleepovers or school camp.

Self-Help

Drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day is important. It may be tempting to try restricting fluids in the evening, but in fact this will not help and may even delay the process of staying dry at night. Drinks containing caffeine (e.g. tea, coffee, hot chocolate, cola) should be avoided at night. Encourage your child to urinate regularly during the day. Remind your child that it’s okay to go to the toilet at night time and use a night light so that your child can easily find the way.

Bladder Training

This is a treatment plan that should involve a health professional. Some children don't drink enough during the day (and may actually restrict how much they drink to try to avoid wetting the bed at night) and this can cause the bladder to shrink and subsequently send signals to the brain that it needs to empty long before it is at capacity. With bladder training, your child learns to drink and hold a much larger volume of fluid. This usually results in the bladder holding enough fluid overnight.

Mattress Protection

You may choose to let time do the hard work and just wait until your child becomes dry at night. If this is your plan of action, you'll need to use a mattress protector to keep his mattress dry. Make sure that the protector isn't 'breathable' (in this scenario, you don't want the mattress to be able to 'breath' as this will only mean that it will get wet) - it needs to completely cover the mattress and it must be made out of 100% plastic. Rotate the mattress regularly and try to take it outside into the sun occasionally to air it.

Protective Underwear

Even though there are now pull-ups for big kids available, it's unlikely that using these as a permanent way of getting around bed-wetting problems will ever actually solve the problem. With pull-ups, your child will continue to 'wet' the bed without ever learning how to solve the problem. Pull-ups are a great solution, however, for sleepovers and school camps - anything that is temporary and that will cause embarrassment if the bed is wet.

Toileting At 10 O'clock

Some children respond well to being taken to the toilet several hours after they've gone to bed. Over time, they will learn to do a wee on command (and perhaps not even remember it in the morning). While this will help

Choosing The Right Bedwetting Alarm

Wearable Bedwetting Alarms

With a wearable alarm, the sleeper places the moisture sensing device in his or her pyjamas or underwear. A wearable bedwetting alarm reacts to the urine almost immediately. This type of bedwetting alarm is a design in which the child wears the moisture sensor, which is connected to the alarm device by means of a cord, in or on their underwear or pajamas.

Bed-And-Pad Bedwetting Alarm

In an alarm-and-pad bedwetting alarm, the moisture sensor is in the form of a pad placed beneath the sleeper. The sewn-in sensors in the pad detect moisture and the alarm sounds. The sensor pads which come with the Wet Detective from Potty MD have the added advantage of being waterproof, which means you don’t need an extra waterproof pad on the bed (as well as the sensor pad). The pads are also industrial quality so they withstand wash after wash. This is a good option for those children who don’t want to wear an alarm. They are also good for adults, the elderly and those with special needs.

Wireless Bedwetting Alarm

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The third type of bedwetting alarm, the wireless alarm, has a moisture sensor which communicates to the alarm unit with a transmitter. The base unit (receiver) is plugged into a wall in the bedroom (one can also be plugged into the parent’s room). This is the newest technology in bedwetting alarms. The Rodger Wireless Bedwetting Alarm comes with underwear with sewn-in sensors. The added advantage of this alarm over others is that moisture is detected immediately thereby triggering the alarm to sound immediately to wake the child.

Bed wetting therapy experts have estimated that, with consistent and proper use, the best bedwetting alarms will train children to wake before wetting in around four to six weeks. Some train much quicker, within days, others take longer. Bedwetting alarms are successful in around eighty percent of young bedwetters.

  • Wet Stop 3
    • Wearable alarm with clipped on sensor and cord
      • Sound and vibration
        • Children

Advantages: Cost effective, Simple to use, Proven success (sold since 1979).

  • Wet Detective
    • Sensor pad on bed and alarm unit beside bed
      • Sound
        • Children
        • Adults
        • Special Needs
        • Elderly

Advantages:Can be set to a loud setting, Pad is waterproof, Simple to use, Comfortable – no cables.

  • Rodger Wireless Alarm
    • Wearable sensor underpants with transmitter. Base unit plugged into wall.
      • Sound
        • Children
        • Adults
        • Special Needs

Advantages: Latest technology, Comfortable – sewn-in sensor underpants, No cords, Moisture detected immediately.

Conclusion:

It’s important to praise your child’s efforts and progress, and try not to be negative on bad days. Praise and encouragement should be given for behaviours such as going to the toilet before bedtime, using the alarm correctly, taking medicines or helping to change wet sheets. It’s important for parents and carers to stay patient. Bed-wetting is not a behavioural problem, and your child is not wetting the bed on purpose. Don’t be critical or punish your child for wetting the bed as this can make the problem worse. Siblings need to know that it’s not okay to make fun of the situation.

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