6 Year Old Having Frequent Accidents

My 6 year old daughter is having accidents almost everyday. We thought it was a medical problem, but the doctor says no. We tried counseling due to her being adopted, but that is not working. I thought it might be an attention getter, due to her having a younger sibling. We have tried everything. We need some help. Any suggestions?

By Stephanie from Dayton, OH

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I wouldn't make a big deal about it. My granddaughter was "trained" at 2 and has started wetting the bed recently and having accidents. She is 6 also. I see that discouraged look in her eyes when my daughter fusses at her. Being a little older I just feel like there are bigger issues to do battle over but she feels it is unacceptable since she knows better. Just make sure that you take her often to the bathroom. I've noticed that it mostly happens when granddaughter is busy at play or at night when she is asleep. Maybe jot down a note on a calendar when she does it and what is going on-this might give you a clue as to why this is happening.

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I am a retired therapist for adoptive/foster children. This is common in children when we are not sure of their history. If they had been abused they may be experiencing flashbacks or fears which can lead to wetting. Or, it may be developmental. Age 6 is a common age for wetting accidents and they usually grow out of it. There is a medication, DDAVP, that is used for bedwetting. It is very effective with no side effects. We used this a lot for foster children and saw a lot of success. It can be prescribed from the pediatrician and can slow or stop the bedwetting, no matter what the cause is. Good luck.

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I agree with notwrong. My 10 year old still has accidents and the doctor ruled out anything medical. Did anyone else in your family have this problem? Dr. said it could run in families and that in time he will outgrow it. I never discipline him for doing it, as I know it is not his fault. Good luck.

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Certain food allergies can cause an overactive bladder. It might help to have your child tested for allergies and put her on an elimination diet.

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If you want an old ladies advice, that is an old lady that has 7 grown kids, 25 or so grandchildren, (it is hard to keep up with the step-grands these days, but they do count), and i lost track at about 12 great grands with one or two on the way. (I am not senile, nor am i joking about the numbers, it is just crazy sometimes).

Anyway, here is my advice to you, spend your time loving, reinforcing her position in the family, but also give her jobs, make her place in the family an important one, as sometimes a feeling of unimportance can cause the "little" diversions from normal behavior. Also, sometimes, the ability to "hold it" just seems to weaken, and then a few weeks, or even months, later, all's well again.

Mostly, just don't make a big deal about it. The less you stress it, the less it will make her upset if it is something she can't seem to control at this particular time. All the best to you and your family. Loretta, (and I am only 70)

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I hesitated to give you this suggestion, because it might be just some old wives tale, but here it is for what it's worth! Give your daughter a spoonful of peanut butter just before bedtime. It's supposed to help. It's a treat to most kids and it's soothing. I heard about this many years ago. I don't really know if this works, but it shouldn't hurt to give it a try.

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Please just don't make a big deal of it! My brother wet himself (whether at play or sleeping) for what seemed like forever and he finally got over it not long after our parents quit making an issue out of it.

They would fret and run him from doctor to doctor and once the physical part was ruled out they took him for mental/emotional help about wet sheets and wet pants. Well, when the children's hospital finally told them he's a normal boy they stopped their fretting and the disappointed looks on their faces and he stopped wetting himself in a really short time! That was almost five decades ago so some things are best left to nature, time and and not worrying!

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With adoption there is a high probability of FAS or FAE (fetal alcohol syndrome/effects). FAS kids can have all kinds of mental health issues but also medical, one is bladder issues. My dd (adopted) bio-mom (also FAS) had one kidney significantly smaller than the other. She also had problems with her bladder.

ADHD: If your child is ADHD they are running and moving all day, by the time they finally sleep they can zonk out so hard they can't wake up.

One of mine (adopted with FAS, ADHD etc etc) actually fell from top bunk at night and never woke up - he slept hard and was 11 before he was actually dry over 1/2 the time

Allergies: Allergies are another problem that can cause urine issues. When mine flare up I have to pee all night, so do my kids & dh. Ria

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Have you tried behavioral therapy? Applied Behavior Analysts specialize in potty training issues. Good luck!

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Ruling out it being a mental thing, I would suggest a bed wetting alarm (you can also use it during the day) which you can buy off ebay or any number of sites (need to price it around as they can be expensive). Sometimes the child is just not aware of the sensation of the urine coming and this helps by alerting them when moisture hits their panties. Be sure to explain it thoroughly to her first tho and show her how it works so she wont be scared of it hurting her or something.

My cousin's child had problems up through grade school and once the doctor prescribed this thing he was trained within a week. (If it's a night time problem, you'll also need to be in earshot of the alarm as a sound sleeper will need u to wake them up at first til they get the hang of it)

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Parenting General Parenting AdviceOctober 13, 2009
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