If you're like most parents, you had to deal with your share of soaked sheets and midnight tears when your child was small. For approximately 2 percent of girls, though, bed-wetting, or enuresis, continues well into the teenage years. While bed-wetting does not generally indicate illness, your child may find it embarrassing and difficult to handle. As the parent of a teen who wets the bed, you may feel confused and unsure how to handle the problem.
Monitor your teen's fluid intake before bedtime, advises the Massachusetts General Hospital for Children. Your teen may wet the bed because she is a deep sleeper and does not wake to urinate in the night.
Restrict your daughter's intake of tea, chocolate, coffee and carbonated soda. Caffeinated foods and drinks may irritate the bladder and exacerbate bed-wetting.
Use a moisture alarm. Moisture alarms attach to the body and emit a noise when your teen starts to wet the bed. The National Kidney Foundation says that moisture alarms generally help reduce or eliminate bed-wetting within three months.
Offer your daughter an incentive to stay dry throughout the night. The occasional treat or small gift may motivate her to succeed.
Wake your teen during the night to use the bathroom. Do not wake your child more than once a night to relieve herself--repeated wakings may cause your teen to feel sleep-deprived.
Ask your child to urinate less frequently during the day to build and expand the muscles in the bladder. Tell your child to practice holding her urine for longer and longer periods of time until she achieves greater control.
Ask your daughter to imagine waking up in a dry bed. The use of positive imagery may help some teens stop wetting the bed.
Consult a doctor. Your child's doctor may prescribe imipramine or desmopressin to treat bed-wetting. Imipramine increases the amount of urine your child's bladder can hold. Desmopressin works on a hormonal level to reduce your child's production of urine.
At $60 to $100 dollars apiece, in 2010, a moisture alarm may prove a worthwhile investment.
An increase in urination is sometimes associated with diabetes. If your teen experiences sudden weight loss, excessive thirst or fatigue, consult a doctor immediately.
If your teen is an especially deep sleeper, she may sleep through the moisture alarm.
This article is intended as a general guide only and should not replace the advice of a doctor or qualified medical professional.