Once your child has been potty-trained it can feel very frustrating to see that they are still wetting their pants during the day. You might think it’s the child’s fault and be inclined to punish them for it, but experts say there may be several reasons for daytime wetting and strongly warn against punishing a child for wetting their pants.
First of all it should be understood that daytime wetting in children over 4 years old is considered a problem and affected children should be seen by a pediatrician. They may have a structural problem with their bladder, an overactive bladder, a urinary tract infection or other underlying medical problems.
They may also have something called a “weak outlet valve” which can cause leaking urine when they laugh, cough, or strain.
If your child is going to the bathroom and still wetting their pants afterward it may be because they are not fully emptying their bladder when they go. They could be in a hurry to get back to playing, feel afraid or stressed by their environment, or just not realize that they didn’t “finish the job.”
If that’s the issue, they can be taught to relax & take their time when they go. You can also teach them to count to ten after they go and then try to squeeze a little more out.
Don’t limit the amount of fluid your child drinks. Not only may it lead to dehydration, not drinking enough will keep their bladder from filling up, but it may make it harder for them to know when they have to go.
If the doctor give your kiddo a clean bill of health, you can work on retraining using positive reinforcement (like a sticker chart, for example), or a timed schedule so that they are going every hour throughout the day. Ask them if something about the bathroom is upsetting for them, and then work to solve the problem. (There may be ghosts in there, or maybe they saw a spider one and are now afraid of the bathroom.)
Don’t punish your child, belittle them, or put them in diapers. Kids Health.org says wetting their pants is such a huge stressor for children that the only things they consider more upsetting are losing a parent and going blind! (Poor babies.)
The most important thing when dealing with a child who is still wetting his or her pants is for parents to be patient, loving and supportive.They don’t want to wet their pants any more than you want them to do it.