Physical Therapy Can Stop Bedwetting!

Physical Therapy can help stop bedwetting. Child high fiving adult, practicing using the potty, picture for the blog about Pediatric Bladder Physical Therapist

Did you know that physical therapy can help your child’s bedwetting?

We are pediatric bladder and bowel physical therapists right here in Grand Rapids, Michigan and we help bedwetting!

At Purple Mountain Physical Therapy, here in Grand Rapids, Michigan, we specialize in pelvic health physical therapy and this includes pediatric bladder and bowel health. We offer a variety of physical therapy methods to help your child gain control of their bladder when sleeping. Everything we do for children is specific to pediatric developmental stages, age appropriate and includes the parent or guardian to help improve household support so you all can achieve the goals you set. Physical Therapy can help stop bedwetting. If you are interested in learning more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, contact us here.

What does bladder and bowel physical therapy do for my child?

We help children learn about their bladder and bowel function, we use exercises and other interventions to enhance control. We guide and support parents and educate both parents & kids on optimal function.

All children who experience bedwetting will receive an evaluation, with the parent included, that fully analyzes bladder and bowel function, both daytime and nighttime.

Here is a link to information about our evaluationWe may ask you a variety of questions regarding your child’s bladder and bowel function. These could include

  • Toilet habits and behaviors
  • Urinary habits, including frequency, urgency and stream.
  • Fluid intake habits, types of fluid & volume
  • Estimated daytime urinary output
  • Estimated bedwetting volume lost.
  • Urinary stream characteristics (does it stop and start, happen easily, split, etc)
  • Your child’s sensation of their urinary urge
  • Sleep quality, movements, habits, bedtime. Arousal during sleep.
  • General nutrition intake, timing of meals, habits of breakfast, lunch and dinner, fiber intake, food preferences.
  • Bowel habits including do you have daily bowel movements, does your child feel empty afterwards, is the volume of the stool reflecting the quantity of food ingested, timing, sensation of urge to defecate, straining, pain, bloating or other.
  • Abdominal distension, abdominal wall weakness, abdominal pain or cramping.
  • What you have tried that didn’t work to facilitate bladder and bowel control.
  • Urinary tract infection history.
  • Developmental milestones for motor and speech.
  • Your child’s reaction to the urge to urinate or defecate.
  • Toileting postures
  • Your child’s physical activities and sports
  • Any pertinent medical history. This could include anything, including: learning disabilities, congenital anorectal malformation, diabetes, spina bifida, down syndrome, autism, any developmental delay, anxiety, ADHD or any other condition.

Our goal is to fully support you and your child and provide trauma informed and developmentally appropriate care. Families tell us that the PT to stop their child’s bedwetting is therapeutic and uplifting.

The evaluation and all treatment occurs between the parent, child and doctor of physical therapy. We include the child into any conversation so they understand the treatment and experience buy-in. If your child is too young or disabled to fully understand, we provide extensive parental support and can use a variety of methods to help your child improve bedwetting. To learn more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, contact us here.

We use a variety of methods to improve your child’s bedwetting and overall bladder and bowel function. These include:

  • Biofeedback to help your child learn to release and tighten the bladder and bowel control muscles.
  • Core strengthening for any child who has low tone, weak core or lower strength
  • Breathing exercises
  • Sensory training to improve your child’s understanding of what an urge to urinate and defecate feels like. Children often are completely unaware of the need to void.
  • Exercises practicing toileting including breathing, how to open their passageway, how to relax, posture on the toilet (Or standing for boys, if preferred).
  • Fiber and dietary suggestions to promote daily, healthy, soft bowel movements, without straining.
  • Partnering with your pediatrician and advising you on protocols to facilitate a bowel clean-out. Often children who have bedwetting has constipation.
  • Gentle manual therapy methods to the abdomen or low back to facilitate intestinal motility, awareness of their body and relief of muscular guarding.

Your child’s bedwetting physical therapy will be comprehensive and fully work to address daytime and nighttime bladder and bowel issues.

Quite often families come to us and are not aware of any daytime bladder issues and report their child has daily bowel movements. However, upon further inquiry we often find that children do, indeed, have non-optimal bladder and bowel daytime function. If we want to alleviate bedwetting, we must optimize daytime bladder and bowel function. We understand that you may be skeptical that physical therapy can help stop your child’s bedwetting, but our experience is guided in helping families just like yours. Give us a call at 616-516-4334 if you would like to learn more, or reach out here.

Pediatric bedwetting physical therapy must always address constipation & daytime bladder habits!

A common contributor to bedwetting is constipation. You can imagine that in a small body, that a full rectum can squish the bladder and limit bladder capacity. When this happens, the bladder may empty involuntarily either at night with bedwetting or during the day. Our bedwetting physical therapy program will help identify if this is happening for your child and our therapy improves this.

PT for Bedwetting includes multiple methods that work together to enhance your child’s control.

You can expect exercises, biofeedback, coaching and external manual therapy methods to improve bladder and bowel awareness. Our treatment includes behavior modifications, dietary recommendations, pelvic floor retraining through exercises and gentle guidance, manual therapy (external only), and exercise to strengthen the core and hip musculature. We will give you at-home methods to improve constipation and daytime toileting habits. We provide gentle, hands-on manual therapy to help promote intestinal mobility. Additionally, we practice with your child effective toileting strategies, which includes not holding in your poop and listening to your body and knowing when to go to the toilet. To learn more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, contact us here.

In nearly all cases, when constipation and daytime voiding habits are optimized, we can stop bedwetting.

We will advise you and develop a bedwetting treatment plan that includes a variety of interventions that have been shown in clinical studies to be important physical therapy treatment components to stop bedwetting.

Is bedwetting hereditary?

If a parent experienced bedwetting, we do know that you are more likely to have a child who experiencing nocturnal enuresis, also. However, we also have research that supports that constipation has been present in both parent and child. Parents, it is possible that your own bedwetting may have been triggered by constipation you were not even aware was present. Top clinical experts in the field of pediatric bedwetting consistently assert that constipation must be treated and is likely what has been “inherited” and that the bladder is sensitive to the stretched/full rectum. We can help your child eliminate their bedwetting by addressing constipation and all of the items noted above. To learn more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, contact us here.

If you, as a parent, wet the bed until 6, 8, 12 years or older, it does not mean that your child will have to do the same! Treating the underlying constipation can cure bedwetting. As pediatric bladder & bowel physical therapists we know that many parents think that their child is not constipated. However, when we partner with you to discover and monitor your child’s bowel movement habits, kids and parents find it enlightening to realize that the bowels are not actually functioning as well as they thought.

Physical therapy to help stop bedwetting is provided in a safe, private treatment space in an uplifting environment that is developmentally appropriate.

We work closely with parents and children to create a safe and trusting partnership, so that you experience results, are supported and well cared for. Our approach with children who have bedwetting or any bladder & bowel control problem, is positive, encouraging and rewarding. To learn more about our pediatric physical therapy for bedwetting, reach out to us at 616-516-4334 or contact us here.

Pelvic floor muscle training helps your child learn to control these muscles and helps stop bedwetting.

The pelvic floor is responsible for holding pee and poop in and letting it out. Sometimes when children have developed bedwetting, constipation or urinary problems (such as incontinence, frequency, urgency or holding their pee too long), the pelvic floor muscles get confused and need to be retrained. The pelvic floor needs to relax in order to empty the bladder or the bowel, but for some kids this isn’t happening. Then, they go to bed and fully relax and the flood gates open with bedwetting! If the muscles are not functioning well during the day, it will impair the ability to control your bladder when sleeping. To learn more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, contact us here.

Manual therapy to the abdomen or low back can be effective to help stop bedwetting and pediatric bladder & bowel problems!

 Sometimes our treatment includes gentle, hands-on treatments that are directed to your child’s spine, abdomen, pelvis or legs. For example, when stool gets backed up in the rectum it is very common that peristalsis (the coordinated contractions of smooth muscle in your large intestine) gets disrupted. Manual therapy to the abdomen, lower back, and hips can help restore optimal digestion and improve posture to reduce constipation and also calm down an overactive bladder. We also use exercise that are fun and developmentally appropriate to promote posture, breathing mechanics, and mobility of abdominal tissue and the hips/pelvis.

Children with constipation, bedwetting or daytime wetting commonly have weakness in their hips and core musculature.

At Purple Mountain Physical therapy we develop individualized exercise programs that address your child’s specific deficits in a fun and engaging way so that their bedwetting can stop and their bladder and bowel control during the daytime can be optimized, as well! To learn more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, contact us here.

Behavior modifications that can help stop bedwetting!

We will work with the parents and child to identify any habits that need to be improved. It is common that toileting behaviors are not ideal, leading to diurnal enuresis (wetting their pants during the day) or bedwetting (nocturnal enuresis). Often we find that children don’t like to use the toilet. We also identify that some kids sit on the toilet too long, hold their breath and strain. We are experts at identifying and coaching your child to gain control of their bowel and bladder so bedwetting can stop and urinary frequency, urgency and incontinence can also resolve. Here is a link to a booklet about pediatric bedwetting that may be helpful for families to use at home.

If you are serious about getting support for your child so they can stop bedwetting, we are here to help you!

Bedwetting is common, but not normal and has known psychological stress on your child and your household. Bedwetting is often driven by constipation and improper daytime habits for the bladder. As pediatric pelvic physical therapists, we know how to effectively and positively help your child to learn how to use their bladder and bowel optimally. We also know how to teach a parent to support your child. This isn’t easy to overcome, but our expert care brings clarity to a puzzling situation. If you are interested in learning more about our pediatric physical therapy to help stop bedwetting, contact us today and we can begin with an evaluation.

Purple Mountain Physical Therapy is a specialty bladder and bowel control clinic located in Grand Rapids, MI. We offer expert care to help children overcome toileting challenging and bedwetting. We also work with women and men who have pelvic floor dysfunction and bladder, bowel or pain related problems. We have advanced training and experience helping kids improve their bladder & bowel control using a combination of exercises, external treatments, biofeedback and play based therapy. We partner with parents to help you know how to best help your child. Our doctors of physical therapy promise to give you our best! To learn more about our physical therapy to help your child’s bedwetting, call 616-516-4334 or contact us here.


Dr. Maureen O’Keefe, DPT and the Purple Mountain Physical Therapy Team