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Why Isn’t Potty Training Working?

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Urinary wetting, whether it happens at bedtime or maybe from laughing too hard, can be embarrassing for any child.

Urinary wetting or incontinence is the act of accidental or intentional urination in children who should be able to control their bladders. Bedwetting is fairly common. The American Academy of Pediatrics found that bedwetting affects 20 percent of 5 year olds, 10 percent of 6 year olds, and 3 percent of 12 year olds.

According to pediatric urologist Craig Peters, MD, FAAP, of Children's National, if a child is still wetting frequently following at least six months of toilet training, parents and doctors need to look at deeper causes. Dr. Peters said, in a presentation during the 2013 Future of Pediatrics conference, that most wetting is behavioral and functional, though anatomical issues should not be overlooked and a thorough historical exam can usually help parents find the source of the wetting. 

In this video, Dr. Peters, who is also chief of Surgical Innovation, Technology, and Translation in the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, explains the different types of wetting and how parents can learn how to stop it. 


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