Does Deep Sleep Cause Bedwetting in Children?

Does Deep Sleep Cause Bedwetting in Children?

Does Deep Sleep Cause Bedwetting in Children?

One factor that could play a role in children’s bedwetting has to do with the brain, which is, difficulty in their ability to wake up during sleep. Children who wet the bed are often described as being ‘deep sleepers’. 

sleeping child

But I want you to just ponder a bit on this question. Is their deep sleeping causing their bedwetting? Or is it the other way around?

There is a debate surrounding whether sleep problems are caused by being a deep sleeper or whether the frequent brain stimulation without waking contributes to disordered sleep.  One theory is that being a deep sleeper can affect the way the body communicates with the brain when it comes to doing wee. They have a harder time developing an effective signaling system that wakes them up when they need to wee during the night. So instead, the child’s pelvic floor relaxes during sleep, and bedwetting occurs. 

The other theory is that children with bedwetting have more broken sleep and are more tired. Therefore it is more difficult to wake up and have higher levels of sleepiness during the day.

tired child

So it’s hard for me to say that ‘deep sleep’ can cause bedwetting in children, plus there’s no evidence to support this. 

Dr Steve Hodges

According to Dr Steve Hodges at, children with healthy bladders simply do not need to pee overnight. Humans typically don’t eat or drink overnight, therefore don’t produce enough urine to need to pee. A healthy bladder has the capacity and stability to hold on to the urine that we do produce until we wake up.

So you could reasonably say your child wets the bed and is a deep sleeper, but it’s not logical to say your child wets the bed because he or she is a deep sleeper. Are you following me here? 

So if your child is a deep sleeper and you want to fix your child’s bedwetting, then the question you need to ask yourself is ‘Why is my child’s bladder unstable?’ Or ‘What can we do to correct my child’s bladder?’ Right?

The bottom line is, most children are deep sleepers. Most children don’t wet the bed. We really need to be looking at why your child's bladder needs to empty during the night. According to Dr Steve Hodges, this can quite often be due to an overactive bladder or constipation.

I address overactive bladder and constipation in other articles, so be sure to check them out!

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