Children’s Continence Issues

Children may have issues with constipation/soiling, day wetting, frequency of urination (having to go to the toilet alot), urinary urgency/incontinence and bed wetting.

How common is incontinence in children?

It is normal for children younger than 3 to not have complete control over their bladder. Most children can control their bladder and bowel by 4 years of age. About 10% of children 5 -6 years old experience daytime wetting, this number tends to decrease with age.

Children with incontinence of the bowel

If a child has regular poo accidents (faecal incontinence) after the age of 4 or starts having accidents when they had previously had control, they require a medical assessment. In almost all children with faecal incontinence, it is due to the large bowel not being emptied properly, or constipation.

Daytime urinary incontinence in children

Bladder incontinence can happen in children from time to time but when it happens regularly over the age of 5 for girls and 6 for boys, it can become an issue. Wee accidents can be caused by a number of reasons including anxiety, caffeine, constipation, overactive bladder, not emptying the bladder properly, inattention to when the bladder is full or a small bladder.

Nocturnal Enuresis (bed wetting)

Bed wetting happens when the bladder empties when asleep. This can be worrying for parents and embarrassing for children. Most children are dry overnight by the time they start school, but it can take up to 7 or 8 years of age to be completely dry overnight. Children may wet the bed due to 3 main reasons:

  1. The inability to wake when they have a full bladder
  2. Their bladder is overactive at night and doesn’t store their wee
  3. Their kidneys produce a large volume of wee overnight which they cannot hold

Physiotherapy for Children’s continence

After thorough assessment including use of real-time ultrasound if applicable, physio treatment may include the following:

  • Education for child and parent
  • Teaching correct bladder and bowel habits
  • Timed voiding and drinking programs
  • Use of bed wetting alarms
  • Pelvic floor muscle training or relaxation
  • Liaising with teachers
  • Referral to other health professionals as needed - it is common that treatment for children’s continence involves a multidisciplinary team

Physiotherapy for the Pelvic Floor

Whether your issue is pain, leakage, weakness or tightness, we can provide you the tools to manage your condition. Located in Ulverstone and Wynyard, servicing Burnie to Devonport and the North West Coast of Tasmania.

Take Back Control