The Impact of Bedwetting

Studies on bedwetting has revealed that it has not just physical impact but also some psychological impact. Based on their studies, many medical personnel and psychologists have reasons to believe that the psychological impact of bedwetting is more serious than the physical aspect of it. Given this, it is important that parents handle it very proficiently to reduce the impact on children. In the opinion of many psychologists, bedwetting also known as sleepwetting or nocturnal enuresis can become a problem or not depending on how the family of the child or the child himself handles the situation. Below are some of the various ways, bedwetting can affect a child.


There is no generally accepted opinion as for whether bedwetting can lower the self esteem of a child. However, several studies have discovered that better management of sleepwetting can improve the self-esteem of a child. This invariable means that if it is not properly managed, the self-esteem of a child will be affected. In fact, the result of the study conducted on this showed bedwetting to bed a stressful life event. According to this study, bedwetting is ranked next to parental fighting which is second to parental divorce in the ranking of most stressful life event among children. In the same study, bedwetting was second to parental fighting in the ranking of most stressful event among adolescents.

The impact on self-esteem results from certain problems faced by bedwetting children. Such problems include but not limited to punishment from parents, teasing from siblings, fear of friends finding out and many more. The severity of psychological harm done on bedwetting depends on whether or not the self-esteem of a child is harmed or whether or not the acquisition of social skills is hampered. The factors that determine this are:

  • how much social activities are limited by bedwetting
  • the extent of social ostracism by peers
  • how attempts that have been made to treat the condition that comes to no avail
  • how long the condition has lasted

Behavioral impact

Besides the impact of self-esteem, nocturnal enuresis can also have some impact on behavior of the child. This normally occurs if bedwetting results in developmental problems. A child who bed wets can also have behavioral problems if he or she has self-esteem issues and stress resulting from the condition. 

Lost of self confidence

Bedwetting can lead to lost of self confidence when it is poorly handled by parents or when punishment is used as a cure to the situation. Punishment as it has been discovered through studies can worsen the condition. This is common among the uneducated parents or parents with only grade-school level education.

Impact on parents

Bedwetting can also affect the parents whose children wet at night during sleep. It increases their laundry owing to soil clothes. It also affects sleep time as result of frequent wakes to take the children to the toilet. Cleaning the house or mopping it so that it will not smell can also be stressful to parents or add to their workload at home.