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Thread: Bedwetting - how much of a problem these days?

  1. #1

    Default Bedwetting - how much of a problem these days?

    On another thread Vaslov wrote:

    "I wear an ID bracelet as an organ donor. And as a lifetime bedwetter I have chosen to include ENURESIS on mine. I was working with some kids who took a look at it and asked what that word meant. When I told them it opened a lively discussion about the problems they had with bedwetting - and the bracelet was commended as COOL, REAL COOL! "

    This reminded me of a article in a British news paper where an incontinent adult wrote openly about the condition and coping with it - I have lost the cutting but it was an impressive piece by someone in a high power job.

    The "taboo" aspects of talking about incontinence and bedwetting seem to go back to a previous age when things were very different and the problem was
    very much harder to cope with - leading to all those attempts at early "potty training" that older posters here feel contributed to all sorts of personal problems.

    There have been so many improvements in managing incontinence that it is high time it was regarded as an inconvenience, not a major issue with implications that sufferers were somehow morally deficient!


    Waterproof mattress covers work.
    Disposable diapers are usually efficient.
    Sheets get thrown in a washing machine/dryer and are ready for use the next night.
    Mattresses don't cost the high percentage of income they used to.
    Daytime protection is usually reliable.


    Rubber sheets were hit and miss affairs - unlike modern absorbant pads urine pooled and often ran over the edge.

    Cloth Diapers were not always good at containing pee.

    Rubber plastic pants didn't work very well and were leak prone.

    Washing sheets and blankets was a labour intensive activity - and getting them dry took a very long time.

    Daytime wetting was much more noticeable because nappies/plastic pants/ trainer pants were bulky and didn't work all the time.

    ALL these things made parent's life hard - especially mum's and there was good reason for the despair some familiy's felt about having a continence problem in the family - be it either a young person, disabled adult or elderly person.

    I am not suggesting life is always stress free for IC sufferer's today - far from it - but there is no longer the need for the kind of near panic reaction to this kind of problem there once was.

    Most disabilities are understood much better in this day and age - but the understanding of IC which affects a great number of people, seems to be lagging very far behind.

  2. #2


    Meh.... what people don't seem to understand is that, unlike what most people think, the new generations ARE generally MUCH more accepting then previous generations.

  3. #3


    hi dayannight - I'll put in for "humour" too! I was lucky/unlucky enough to spend 10 years at 2 boarding schools, junior & senior.
    My relatives were "not amused" when I visited and slept over with them. But my parents and brother treated my "baby" habit as a huge joke - matter to be discussed at breakfast and supper as to whether the baby bedwetter had or whether he would wet the bed once again. They named me The Boy, for life! And taught me the invaluable lesson I would need in boarding-school dormitories in the future:-

    to see the joke, laugh WITH the others, and laugh AT myself. I ended up quite the dorm clown about my bedwetting, saving myself from a lot of grief. All the grief came from teachers and staff - who took a dim view of a boy still wetting the bed at 8, 18, and beyond!

  4. #4


    Now I'm a teenager, I wonder if I should start talking about incontinence and enuresis instead of daywetting and bedwetting?

  5. #5


    I don't think age needs to come into it - if you want to be clear and have everyone understand what you mean stick to plain English- but the terms you use are not quite interchangable. Incontinence can refer to both day and night leakage and anything from a slight dribbling that hardly marks your bedding or underwear to fill flooding arising from the sudden release of a bladderfull of urine. And incontinence covers loss of bowel control as well. Strictly speaking enuresis (although a lot of people take it just to mean bed wetting) can either be "nocturnal enuresis" for bedwetting or "Diurnal enuresis" for daytime loss of control of urine. (or sometimes both - which can be confusing).

    For me "Day-wetting" "Bedwetting" and "fecal incontinence" are simple, descriptive and help people understand what you are tying to convey. I know "soiling" could be substituted for "fecal incontinence" but I don't like the term-it's just a matter of personal preference.

    I hope this is understandable!

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