An exploration of children's views of bed-wetting at 9 years

R Butler, J Heron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Although some empirical investigations have explored the impact of nocturnal enuresis for sufferers, little is known about how children in general understand nocturnal enuresis. This study employed a large cohort of children at 9 years, asking directly about the perceived difficulty of bed-wetting in relation to an extensive range of life events.

METHOD: The sample comprised 8209 children, 4012 (48.9%) male and 4197 (51.1%) female who, as part of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children survey, completed a booklet called 'My World' which included a section of 21 items concerned with childhood difficulties.

RESULTS: Bed-wetting was highly endorsed as a difficulty for children, and factor analysis revealed it to be construed as a social problem. Girls were more likely to consider events of a social and emotional nature to be difficult, whereas boys rated antisocial events as more problematic. Boys and those who suffer from nocturnal enuresis were significantly more likely to view bed-wetting as more difficult for children.

CONCLUSION: Bed-wetting, which is construed as a social issue, tends to be rated as a major difficulty for children, increasingly so for boys and those who suffer from nocturnal enuresis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-70
Number of pages6
JournalChild: Care, Health and Development
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008


  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Attitude
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Great Britain
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nocturnal Enuresis
  • Questionnaires
  • Sex Distribution
  • Sex Factors

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