Observer & Eccentric Newspaper
November 30, 2011
By Lyle Danuloff, Ph. D. and Michael Stallsmith, Sp.
Bedwetting is a difficult and misunderstood issue. What makes it even more challenging is the impact this genetically-based sleep disorder has on the quality of a person’s life. At the Enuresis Treatment Center, our commitment is to put an end to bedwetting by establishing a healthy pattern of sleep, which naturally creates positive results for our patients in many areas of their lives.
We know that bedwetting is not an easy condition with which to live. It’s not unusual to feel different and isolated, and frustration can exist within the whole family dynamic. Living with a long-term sleep disorder can begin to produce its own set of complications, like difficulty awakening in the morning, changes in disposition, and challenges with focus and concentration. In fact, we often see a high rate of ADHD/ADD diagnoses (perhaps a misdiagnosis). Bedwetting is simply a tell-tale sign that there is a compromise to the health and quality of one’s sleep, making this a serious issue. We know that you, as parents, are seeking a permanent resolution for this condition. Perhaps you’ve tried the most common approaches: Awakening your child in the night, fluid restriction, alarm devices, drug therapy, homeopathic remedies, chiropractic care, pull-ups….all of which are clearly ineffective.
The most common advice that is given — and the most detrimental — is to wait to outgrow bedwetting. There is no guarantee that your child will one day just stop wetting the bed. The fact is, the average age for our patients is 13, and we also regularly treat adults. However, if someone does outgrow bedwetting, they are going to have to live with the sleep disorder that will likely manifest in other ways later in life, such as sleep apnea, sleepwalking, night terrors, tooth grinding, insomnia, excessive snoring, etc
Bedwetting is the only treatable sleep disorder. Yet since bedwetting is not physiological or psychological in nature, doctors are at a loss with how to treat this condition properly. It is necessary to get to the core of any problem in order to make a permanent change, as we do with the sleep disorder. At the Enuresis Treatment Center, we utilize a holistic approach known as biofeedback, which “trains” the brain to sleep in a natural, restorative pattern of sleep.
We also treat the symptoms of the bedwetting, which include an underdeveloped bladder and a weakened/desensitized lock muscle located at the base of the bladder. By bringing all of these elements together, a new experience of life emerges for our patients. We see positive changes in disposition, self-esteem, energy levels, an improved capacity to concentrate and focus, etc. It now also becomes possible to participate in social activities without anxiety, like sleepovers and camp stays.