Bed wetting in girls can be caused by a number of factors. Among these factors are hormonal imbalances, an undersized bladder, genetics, deep sleep, stress and physical abnormalities, among others. Most doctors believe that bed wetting in girls is less common than bed wetting in boys.
Nighttime bed wetting, formally known as nocturnal enuresis, is a fairly common problem among children and tends to run in families. Normal bed wetting should cease after age 5. If it continues to be a problem past age 6, parents can turn to a doctor to check for any health problems in their child and to seek advice on treatment. The doctor might perform tests to check for a urinary tract infection and diabetes. Either of these health issues can lead to regular bed wetting in girls, and involuntary urination might end upon treatment.
Some girls experience nighttime bed wetting because of an improperly developed ureter, the tube through which urine moves from the kidney to the bladder. Another cause might be an underproduction of the hormone that reduces the amount of urine made by the kidneys. Spinal cord abnormalities can also lead to bed wetting in girls.
In the absence of a physical abnormality or other health problem, the bed wetting issue might be caused by stress or deep sleep. Stress is often accompanied by changes in eating habits and sleep deprivation. When a child is in deep sleep, she might be less likely to notice urges to empty her bladder.
Parents should not assume that their daughter is wetting the bed on purpose. They also should not assume that she doesn't make an effort to get out of bed at night. Adults also should be sensitive to the fact that bed wetting tends to be more emotionally traumatic at a younger age for girls than it is for boys.
Many children simply outgrow bed wetting, but some might need either behavioral or medical treatment to curb the problem. Behavioral treatment might include limiting beverage intake during the evening, training the bladder by holding urine for longer periods during the day or using an alarm system that wakes the child when she wets the bed at night. Medical treatment might include medicines that either decrease the amount of urine produced by the kidney or increases the capacity of the bladder.
Also, nighttime bed wetting leads to urinary tract infections more often in girls than in boys because sleeping in a damp environment is more harmful to the female anatomy. Such infections can aggravate bed wetting in girls, so parents should consider checking on their child during the night to ensure that she has not wet the bed. If she has wet the bed, they should ensure that the girl's bedding is changed and that she puts on dry clothes before going back to sleep.