A Kid’s Guide to Coronavirus via American Psychological Association (APA)

https://www.apa.org/pubs/magination/kids-guide-coronavirus-ebook.pdf

The APA posted this children’s book about COVID 19.

A Kid’s Guide to Coronavirus (PDF)

By

Rebecca Growe, MSW, LCSW and Julia Martin Burch, PhD illustrated by Viviana Garofoli

Magination Press • Washington, DC American Psychological Association

You probably already know a lot about different ways to be sick. You may know about colds, when you cough and sneeze a lot. You may know about strep throat, when it hurts to swallow, or ear infections, when your ear hurts inside.

What other ways to be sick do you know about?

Most sicknesses have been around for a long time. Scientists and doctors and all the grown-up helpers know just what to do to make people get better.

Can you think of some things that help people when they are sick?

This book is about a certain sickness. It’s called COVID-19, or coronavirus.

Have you heard of it?

Grown-ups have been talking about it a lot. You may have heard about it on TV or online.

What do you know about it already?

A lot of kids have questions about coronavirus. And without getting good answers, they might feel confused or even scared.

This book will help answer those questions!

This coronavirus is a new sickness. Grown-ups don’t know as much about it as they’d like. But here is what they do know:

Coronavirus is contagious. That means it can get people sick by moving from one person’s body to another person’s body when they touch or spend time close together. Coronavirus can move from you to someone else before you even start to feel sick.

Many people who get sick with coronavirus have a fever, a dry cough, and a little trouble breathing.

Anyone can get sick from coronavirus. It can cause big problems for older people or people who have other health issues.

Because coronavirus is such a new sickness, doctors and scientists are working really hard to learn how to help people get better and make coronavirus go away.

In fact, everyone can help out! You can do a lot to stop coronavirus from making people sick.

Can you think of any things you already do to make a difference?

You can wash your hands often with soap and water. Some people sing the ABCs while they do it—what about you?

You can also cover your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue and try not to touch your face a lot.

You can find fun ways to help, too.

Maybe you could paint a picture for your friend, or make a movie of your new dance moves to give Grandma a giggle.

You could write funny jokes on the sidewalk for your neighbors to see, or hang a sign in your window to brighten someone’s day.

Until scientists have found out how to make coronavirus go away for good, you and your family might have to make some other, bigger changes.

You might need to stay away from crowded places. This is because crowds make it easy for coronavirus to spread to more people and make them sick.

For the same reason, your parents might not work as much, or they might try to work from home. You might not be able to go to school or play with friends.

You might see people wear masks when they go outside. You might even get one of your own.

Super-heroes wear masks to protect their secret identities, right?

Now super-people everywhere are wearing masks to protect each other from coronavirus. Feel free to wear a cape, too!

These bigger changes can be hard.

What do you think some hard parts might be?

These bigger changes can be kind of nice.

What do you think some nice parts might be?

You should know that these bigger changes are temporary. That means they will not last forever.

Other things are staying exactly the same! Your grown-ups are still in charge of taking care of you. And it is still your job to be a kid, which means you still need to learn, play, and spend time with family.

What else is staying the same?

And if you ever have questions, or want to talk, your grown-ups are here to help you and to listen.

No sickness can ever change that!

The coronavirus pandemic can be frightening and confusing for children and adults alike. As a parent or caregiver, you have the challenging task of navigating and managing your own emotions and needs during the crisis while also supporting your child. The following tips offer information and concrete strategies that you can start using right away with your child and on your own.

Provide Just Enough Information

It is natural for children to be curious about

the new kind of illness they keep hearing adults discuss. Provide your young child with limited, age-appropriate facts about the virus. Focus on what they can do to keep themselves, their families, and their communities safe.

The information covered in this book is an appropriate example of how to talk with young children about the virus. Listen respectfully to their concerns and reassure them without being dismissive. Help them focus on what is in their control, such as social distancing and hand hygiene. Emphasize that it’s important they still do their “jobs” as a kid, including learning, playing, and spending time with family.

It is important to try to strike a balance between oversharing information, which may lead kids to worry about facets of the crisis they do not need to be concerned about, such as the economy, and under-sharing. Though parents sometimes withhold information from kids with the noble intention of wanting to spare them distress, too little information can send active

imaginations into overdrive, leading kids to concoct far scarier outcomes than what’s realistic.

Validate and Name Emotions

It is normal for children to have a range of emotions in response to the pandemic. Some children might feel anxious about the unknown and fearful about their safety. Others will feel sad or angry about canceled events like a vacation, or about losing their normal routine and time with teachers and friends. No matter the emotion, it is important to validate it, or in other words, to communicate to your child that their emotion makes sense and is okay for them to feel. For example, you might say, “It makes sense that you are feeling disappointed about missing your class field trip. You were really looking forward to it.” Or, “I can understand why you’re feeling worried. There are a lot of changes happening right now.” It is also helpful to specifically label the emotion your child is feeling; research demonstrates that naming an emotion decreases its intensity. In a difficult moment, taking the time to say, “I see that you are really sad” can be incredibly soothing to your child.

Parents sometimes try to make their children feel better by pointing out that the child has many privileges, and that other people are suffering more. For example, a parent might say, “Don’t feel sad about missing vacation! We’re lucky to have somewhere to live. Other kids aren’t that lucky.” Despite the good intentions, this is not a helpful approach, as it confuses children about why they are feeling what they are feeling. It can also lead them to feel ashamed for feeling sad about missing vacation. If you would like to teach your child to reflect on what they have to be grateful for, make a family practice of writing down “gratitudes” or discussing what you are each thankful for over dinner. By doing this when your child is calm rather than feeling sad or fearful, you teach them that their “gratitudes” are things to feel uncomplicated joy about, rather than guilt or confusion.

Focus on the Present Moment

Worried brains tend to focus on the future, predicting all of the scary things that might happen. Teach your child how to gently bring their mind back to the present moment by practicing mindfulness. Being mindful simply means that you are purposefully paying attention to the present moment without judging it as good or bad. Mindfulness can be practiced in countless kid-friendly ways. For example, you can play a mindful “I spy” in which you count all of the objects of a certain color in the space around you. You can mindfully eat, dance, walk, listen to music – the sky is the limit! Build times into the day to practice, such as in transition periods or at meals.

Create a New Routine

It can feel next to impossible to maintain a routine during the quarantine. Yet, flexibly following a consistent plan day-to-day provides much-needed stability for your young child. This is particularly important given that their world has changed dramatically in a short time. Routines do not have to be complicated. For example, it can be helpful to just structure the day around basic needs such as wake-up times and bedtimes, meals, and periods in which you get active. Constructing a routine around these building blocks of physical and mental health makes it more likely that they will occur consistently.

Consider giving your child age-appropriate tasks to help the family, such as setting the table, helping to prepare food, or cleaning up after a meal. Though teaching your child a new skill takes more effort and attention in the short term, it will make your life easier (and increase your child’s level of independence and sense of competence) in the long term.

Create Memories

Look for opportunities to create new, special family rituals. These do not have to be time consuming or involve preparation. For example, you can jump-start your days with a family dance party in which a different family member chooses a song each day and everyone dances around the breakfast table. You might also help your children brainstorm ways that they can give back to their community, such as writing cards for the elderly or creating supportive signs for health-care workers. When your children look back on this time, they will remember that, despite the many challenges, the time at home also allowed your family to create memories together.

Put the Oxygen Mask on Yourself First

Whenever you can, pause and take a moment or two to check in on yourself and your emotions.

Just like your child, you will reduce your own emotional intensity by noticing and labeling your feelings. During a crisis, this kind of self-attention can feel like the last thing a busy parent or caregiver has time for. However, by ensuring that you are attuned to and taking care of your own needs, you will have reserves available to help support your children during difficult moments. You will be grateful that you preemptively invested the time in yourself when you must draw on these reserves to help a struggling child.

Make a point to practice what you preach with your children. Focus on what is in your control, such as practicing and modeling coping skills, limiting news consumption, and creating your own new routines around sleep, nutrition, and exercise. Most important–validate and be gentle with yourself. It is impossible to perfectly fulfill all of the roles you are being asked to play in this moment in time. Get comfortable with being good enough. This may look like allowing your children more time on screens than you would normally, cooking (or just heating up!) very basic meals, or practicing a coping strategy for two minutes while hiding in the bathroom.

When to Seek Help

If your child is experiencing so much anxiety or sadness about COVID-19 that it causes significant distress or begins to impact their functioning (e.g., consistent trouble sleeping, eating, or engaging in typical life activities), you should consult with a licensed psychologist or other mental health professional. There is no need to wait until social distancing restrictions are lifted. During the current crisis, many mental health providers are offering therapy over virtual meeting platforms. The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for children and adults alike. Yet within great challenges lie opportunities for growth, bravery, and resilience. You are taking a concrete, effective step forward simply by taking the time to read this book and reflect on how to help your child. Remind yourself of this whenever the “not good enough” monster strikes. You are doing the best you can, and that is enough.

Rebecca Growe, MSW, LCSW, is a clinical social worker with a private practice. She specializes in treating child and adolescent anxiety disorders, disruptive behavior, and traumatic stress. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

Visit http://www.growecounseling.com

Viviana Garofoli earned her degree in fine arts in 1995, and since then has dedicated her time to illustrating children’s books. She has illustrated over 20 children’s books and contributed to many editorial and textbook illustrations around the world. She lives in Buenos Aires.

@vivi_garofoli

Julia Martin Burch, PhD, is a staff psychologist at the McLean Anxiety Mastery Program at McLean Hospital in Boston. Dr. Martin Burch completed her training at Fairleigh Dickinson University and Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School. She works with children, teens, and parents and specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy

for anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and related disorders. Outside of her work at McLean, Dr. Martin Burch gives talks to clinicians, parent groups, and schools on working with anxious youth.

Magination Press is the children’s book imprint of the American Psychological Association. APA works to advance psychology as a science and profession and as a means of promoting health and human welfare. Magination Press books reach young readers and their parents and caregivers to make navigating life’s challenges a little easier. It’s the combined power of psychology and literature that makes a Magination Press book special.

Visit maginationpress.org @MaginationPress

Copyright © 2020 by Magination Press, an imprint of the American Psychological Association. Illustrations © 2020 by Viviana Garofoli. All rights reserved. Except as permitted under the United States Copyright Act of 1976, no part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system,

without the prior written permission of the publisher. Permission is granted to download and print or reproduce for personal, educational, and non-commercial use only.

Magination Press is a registered trademark of the American Psychological Association. Order books at maginationpress.org or call 1-800-374-2721.

Book design by Rachel Ross

eISBN: 978-1-4338-3415-8

NASP Article on Suicide Prevention During the Pandemic

Suicide Prevention within COVID 19 Pandemic

Over the past several years in working with students at the secondary level, I have found myself approaching school breaks with trepidation for their wellness, mental health, and safety. Unfortunately, when students are out of school, our community has been impacted by student deaths resulting from suicide. Now, impact of the global pandemic has intensified the concern for students given the closures of school buildings with the reopening unknown. The mandates of “stay in place”, social distancing, and face coverings over the past few months, have resulted in drastic change in routines, increase in uncertainty, the loss of employment, and the lives of over 100,000 U.S. citizens.  Educators responded by transforming the face of schools virtually overnight from brick and mortar to computer screens within a distance learning platform.  The pandemic has intensified the concern for the safety, wellness, and mental health of our students with implications for policy and the practice of school psychologists.  

Nationally, suicide is the leading cause of death among youth. Advocacy efforts at the local, state, and national level on behalf of students has resulted in new suicide prevention policy and practice. Over the past few years, there have been several new federal and state laws that have advanced suicide prevention efforts in schools.  The recent legislation has demonstrated the commitment and recognition of policymakers around the importance of school-based prevention efforts; the approval for a 3-digit national suicide prevention and mental health crisis hotline system and mandated suicide prevention education for students, staff, and parents.  NASP has continued to provide leadership and advocacy efforts with suicide prevention.  NASP, in partnership with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the American School Counselor Association, and the Trevor Project authored a comprehensive guidebook [Model School District Suicide Prevention Policy] for school administrators and policymakers. This guidebook provides a framework for best practices for the continuum of K-12 suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention policies. 

At the district level, we have responded as school psychologists to address the student needs by engaging in grassroots advocacy and leadership roles to expand efforts beyond district crisis response (i.e. suicide intervention, postvention) to ensure a comprehensive suicide prevention framework. Suicide is a 24/7 issue. Thus, we partnered with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, law enforcement, community mental health agencies, and with local hospital emergency screening unit teams.  As a result, our team developed a district protocol to prevent, assess the risk of, intervene in, and respond to suicide.  Several integral components of a multi-tiered system of suicide prevention has emerged within the district; board approved suicide prevention policy, a district NASP PREPaRE trained crisis team, a district suicide prevention coordinator, a district suicide prevention council, district-wide coordinated implementation of Signs of Suicide (SOS) prevention education for students, staff, and parents, a community suicide prevention forum, suicide prevention training of trainers (TOT) of school site coordinators, suicide risk assessment protocol and training, educating the community regarding firearm safety, and postvention support in collaboration with community partners.

In March 2020, the global pandemic of COVID-19 drastically changed the landscape of education and our practice as school psychologists, especially with suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention.  Within the first week of school closure, our community was impacted by the death of a student by suicide.   To be honest, there was uncertainty in the “if” or “how” to best provide crisis response and postvention supports.  In collaboration with a few of our NASP PREPaRE community leaders -thank you Dr. Melissa Reeves and Dr. Ben Fernandez – we navigated the discussion with the site crisis leadership team, guided the response efforts, and initiated revision of our suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention protocol to address the needs within a distance learning educational milieu. As a result, our district has provided a comprehensive on-line suicide prevention protocol with embedded forms and resources.

As we continue to face social distancing and school closures in response to the global pandemic, the need for school psychologists to advocate and provide guidance and leadership in suicide prevention efforts is paramount.   Suicide prevention programs and policies expand our roles as crisis responders to include preventive supports for student wellness, mental health, and safety. The uncertainty surrounding the pandemic may generate for students intensified sense of fear, worry, isolation and suicide risk factors; simultaneously impacting youth protective factors such as hope, access to trusted adults, peer connection, and social activities. It is critical to begin or further our efforts to support our students by engaging in advocacy and providing leadership within our district, state, and at the national level with suicide prevention.

I encourage you to review the resources developed by NASP and your state professional organization.  Ask yourself what can I do, especially during this time of the global pandemic, to address student mental health needs and ensure comprehensive suicide prevention policies and practices that encompass prevention, intervention, and postvention? Each of us are “ADVOCACY”, let’s find our voice!  

NASP Comprehensive School Suicide Prevention in a Time of Distance Learning  

Preparing for Virtual School Suicide Risk Assessment Checklist  

COVID-19: Crisis & Mental Health Resources

Source

CALIFORNIA SCHOOL REOPENING GUIDEBOOK “Stronger Together”

The California Department of Education recently released a guidebook for reopening schools. I was particularly drawn to pages 34-36 on “Mental Health and The Well-being of All”. This guide book is easy to read and navigate and should be a good reference tool for reopening.

Link:

Stronger Together- Guide to Reopening Schools

Boardmaker COVID 19 Visual Resources

what is corona

Boardmaker is a complete special education platform that supports education, communication, access and social/emotional needs of more than six million students in 51 countries. Source

Boardmaker created these printable PDFs to support your district during this time:
 

COVID-19 aka The Corona Virus Just Shut Down Our School District

Schools are closed now county wide in Santa Cruz California starting next week. This pandemic just got really real. Wash your hands and stay out of crowds here comes the Corona Virus. Here is the note from our Superintendent.

Good Evening PVUSD staff, 

The safety and wellness of students, families, and school personnel are the highest priorities of all Santa Cruz County schools and districts. Yesterday, we received notification of the first confirmed case of COVID-19 at Rio Del Mar Elementary School. In advance of more COVID-19 cases that are anticipated to follow, School District Superintendents and the Santa Cruz County Office of Education have decided in concurrence with the Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency to close all public Santa Cruz County schools for the week of March 16-20. We will reassess at the end of next week whether an extension of school closures beyond March 20th will be necessary. Santa Cruz County Public Health Officer, Dr. Gail Newel, reported that while the number of cases in our county remains small at this time, the Santa Cruz County Public Health Division expects those numbers to grow significantly in the coming days and weeks which may require a continued response. Schools will remain in session tomorrow, March 13, 2020. Please see the attached community letter with more information. A staff letter will follow with additional information regarding the upcoming week.
Thank you,
Michelle Rodriguez, Ed.D.
Superintendent

Resources

Education based COVID-19 (“Coronavirus”) Information and Resources for Schools and School Personnel

Social Distancing

High School Hygiene

44888

Working at a High School I occasionally have to team with our school nurse to talk to students about hygiene. Here are some of the materials I use.

Articles

PERSONAL CARE HEALTH SOCIAL SKILLS AND SAFETY (Manual) -Great Resource*

Hygiene in Adolescents with ASD

Assessment

https://www.therapistaid.com/worksheets/self-care-assessment.pdf

Personal care self assessment

Tools

Daily Personal Care Checklist

Before we go out- Checklist

Shower Routine Visual

Deodorant Social Story

Wellness Worksheets

Videos

Scientific

Old School -Things haven’t really changed too much.

Cartoon

What is Puberty? Decoding Puberty in Girls

All About Boys Puberty

Inside Puberty: What Are the Stages of Puberty?

Mandated Reporting (California)

 

2018_01_04_38408_1515064067._large

I just took my mandated reporter training. In an effort to keep kids safe I am posting these links to promote child safety.

Links

The CA Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Law: Issues and Answers for Mandatory Reporters

California Department of Social Services (CDSS)

Department of Justice Form SS 8572 –This is the link to the reporting form.

Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act (CANRA)

California Education Code 44807, 49000 and 49001

Mandated Reporter Course Sources PDF

Recognizing Child Abuse: What Parents Should Know– Good resource for parents.

RISK FACTORS

child-abuse-risk-factors-and-possible-indicators_final

STATISTICS

  • 4.1 million child maltreatment referral reports received.1
  • Child abuse reports involved 7.5 million children.1
  • 3.2 million children received prevention & post-response services.1
  • 142,301 children received foster care services.1
  • 74.9% of victims are neglected.
  • 18.3% of victims are physically abused.1
  • 8.6% of victims are sexually abused.1
  • 7.1% of victims are psychologically maltreated.1
  • Highest rate of child abuse in children under age one (25.3% per 1,000).1
  • Annual estimate: 1,720 children died from abuse and neglect in 2017.1,
  • Almost five children die every day from child abuse.1,2
  • Seventy-two (71.8%) percent of all child fatalities were younger than 3 years old.1
  • 80.1% of child fatalities involve at least one parent.1
  • Of the children who died, 75.4% suffered neglect.1
  • Of the children who died, 41.6% suffered physical abuseeither exclusively or in combination with another maltreatment type.
  • 49.6% of children who die from child abuse are under one year.1
  • Boys had a higher child fatality rate than girls (2.68 boys & 2.02 girls per 100,000)1
  • Almost 65,000 children are sexually abused.1
  • More than 90% of juvenile sexual abuse victims know their perpetrator.6
  • Estimated that between 50-60% of maltreatment fatalities are not recorded on death certificates.5
  • Child abuse crosses all socioeconomic and educational levels, religions, ethnic and cultural groups.1

Who abused and neglected children? 

  • 83.4% (More than four-fifths) of perpetrators were between the ages of 18 and 44 years.1
  • 54.1% (More than one-half) of perpetrators were women45.0 % of perpetrators were men, and .09 % were of unknown sex.1

CONSEQUENCES & RISK FACTORS

  • Abused children are 25% more likely to experience teen pregnancy.6
  • Abused teens are more likely to engage in sexual risk taking behaviors, putting them at greater risk for STDs.6
  • About 30% of abused and neglected children will later abuse their own children, continuing the horrible cycle of abuse.7
  • In at least one study, about 80% of 21 year olds that were abused as children met criteria for at least one psychological disorder.13
  • The financial cost of child abuse and neglect in the United States is estimated at $585 billion.8
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences 

References

  1. Child Maltreatment 2017. Published: January 2019. An office of the Administration for Children & Families, a division of U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. This report presents national data about child abuse and neglect known to child protective services agencies in the United States during federal fiscal year 2016. Retrieved from: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/cb/cm2017.pdf
  2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau. (2013). Child Maltreatment 2012. Available from: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/research-data-technology/statistics-research/child-maltreatment
  3. United States Government Accountability Office, 2011. Child maltreatment: strengthening national data on child fatalities could aid in prevention (GAO-11-599). Retrieved from: http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11599.pdf
  4. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families Administration on Children, Youth and Families Children’s Bureau. Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities 2011: Statistics and Interventions. Retrieved from: http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/factsheets/fatality.pdf
  5. Snyder, Howard, N. (2000, July). Sexual assault of young children as reported to law enforcement: victim, incident, and offender characteristics. Retrieved from:  https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/saycrle.pdf
  6. Long – Term Consequences of Child Abuse and Neglect. Child Welfare Information Gateway. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/factsheets/long_term_consequences.cfm
  7. Fang, X., et al. The economic burden of child maltreatment in the United States and implications for prevention. Child Abuse & Neglect (2012), doi:10.1016/j.chiabu.2011.10.006 Retrieved from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213411003140
  8. Harlow, C. U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs. (1999).Prior abuse reported by inmates and probationers (NCJ 172879) Retrieved from: http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/parip.pdf
  9. Swan, N. (1998). Exploring the role of child abuse on later drug abuse: Researchers face broad gaps in information. NIDA Notes, 13(2). Retrieved from the National Institute on Drug Abuse website: www.nida.nih.gov/NIDA_Notes/NNVol13N2/exploring.html
  10. Every Child Matters Education Fund. (2012). We can do better: Child abuse deaths in America (3rd ed.). Retrieved fromhttp://www.everychildmatters.org/storage/documents/pdf/reports/can_report_august2012_final.pdf
  11. Office on Child Abuse and Neglect, Children’s Bureau. Goldman, J., Salus, M. K., Wolcott, D., Kennedy, K. Y. (2003) A Coordinated Response to Child Abuse and Neglect: The Foundation for Practice, Chapter 5, Retrieved fromhttps://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/usermanuals/foundation/
  12. Wilson, E., Dolan, M., Smith, K., Casanueva, C., & Ringeisen, H. (2012). NSCAW Child Well-Being Spotlight: Adolescents with a History of Maltreatment Have Unique Service Needs That May Affect Their Transition to Adulthood. OPRE Report #2012-49, Washington, DC: Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved fromhttp://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/opre/youth_spotlight_v7.pdf
  13. Amy B. Silverman, Helen Z. Reinherz, Rose M. Giaconia, The long-term sequelae of child and adolescent abuse: A longitudinal community study, Child Abuse & Neglect, Volume 20, Issue 8, August 1996, Pages 709-723. Retrieved fromhttp://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0145213496000592
  14. U.S. National Library of Medicine. National Institutes of Health, Behavioral Consequences of Child Abuse. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3743691/

SOURCE

Bedwetting in School-Aged Children

691452550-300x200

Bedwetting is an issue that comes up in elementary school from time to time. Here are some resources to help support this situation for your students. The good news is that for many children the problem will resolve itself over time, or can be fixed through fairly simple treatment.

Bedwetting (also called nocturnal enuresis) is very common. As the following graph shows, almost a third of four-year-olds wet the bed. By the time they are 6, only one in 10 children wet the bed, and one in 20 by age 10. Bedwetting can sometimes continue into adolescence.

Percentage of children who wet the bed at different ages

bed wetting graph

Source

Nighttime bedwetting. This type of bedwetting is a common sleep
a problem in children ages 6–12, occurring only during NREM sleep.
Primary enuresis (the child has never been persistently dry at night)
is associated with a family history of the problem, developmental lag,
or lower bladder capacity, and is unlikely to signal a serious
problem. Secondary enuresis (a recurrence of bedwetting after a year
or more of bladder control) is more likely to be associated with
emotional distress. Interventions include the use of reinforcement and
responsibility training (such as keeping a dry night chart), bladder
control training, conditioning (e.g., bedwetting alarms), and
sometimes medication. In the case of secondary enuresis, it might be
most helpful to determine any source of emotional stress and address
it directly. (For example, if a child starts wetting the bed at night
following parents’ separation or divorce, providing counseling to
address loss issues might help alleviate bedwetting.)

Source

When to see a doctor

You may wish to see a doctor about your child’s bedwetting if:

  • your child is at least six years old (treatment for bedwetting is not recommended before this age as treatment is less effective and many children get better on their own)
  • you or your child are troubled or frustrated by the bedwetting
  • you punish, or are concerned that you might punish, your child for wetting the bed
  • your child wets or has bowel movements in their pants during the daytime.

If your child has been dry at night for six months then begins to wet their bed again, it is important to see a doctor for evaluation.

The doctor will consider your child’s details and determine if there is a physical problem that needs to be addressed.

Source
BEDWETTING

Nocturnal enuresis is the medical term for bedwetting. Most children
wet the bed occasionally or even nightly during the potty-training
years. In fact, it is estimated that seven million children in the
United States wet their beds on a regular basis. Controlling bladder
function during sleep is usually the last stage of potty-training. In
others words, it is normal for children to wet the bed while sleeping
during that learning process. Bedwetting is typically not even
considered to be a problem until after age 7.

Bedwetting in children is often simply a result of immaturity. The age
at which children become able to control their bladders during sleep
is variable. Bladder control is a complex process that involves
coordinated action of the muscles, nerves, spinal cord and brain. In
this case, the problem will resolve in time. On the other hand, it may
be an indication of an underlying medical condition, such as
obstruction of the urinary tract. If bedwetting persists beyond the
age of 6 or 7, you should consult your pediatrician.

There are both primary and secondary forms of bedwetting. With primary
bedwetting, the child has never had nighttime control over urination.
The secondary form is less common and refers to bedwetting that occurs
after the child has been dry during sleep for 6 or more months.
Secondary bedwetting may be caused by psychological stress but may be
the result of an underlying medical condition such as constipation or
urinary tract obstruction. With secondary bedwetting, contact your
doctor for an evaluation.

Commonly prescribed behavioral methods for treating the problem include:

Establishing a regular bedtime routine that includes going to the bathroom
Waking your child during the night before he/she typically wets the
bed and taking him/her to the bathroom
Developing a reward system to encourage your child, such as stickers
for dry nights
Talking to your child about the advantages of potty-training, such as
not having to wear diapers and becoming a “big kid”
Limiting beverages in the evening – even those last minute water requests
Using a “bell-and-pad” which incorporates an alarm that goes off
whenever your child’s pajamas or bed become wet during an accident.
These systems teach your child to eventually wake up before the
bedwetting occurs

As a last resort, a doctor may prescribe medication for bedwetting,
either for short or long-term use. Some examples are imipramine (an
antidepressant), which relaxes the bladder, and desmopressin, a
man-made copy of a normal body chemical that controls urine production
at night. Although medication usually helps, bedwetting typically
resumes once the child stops taking the medicine. As with any drug, it
is important to monitor your child’s response to the medication.

Coping with Bedwetting:

There are products that parents can buy for school-aged children with enuresis:

Disposable absorbent underpants
Reusable absorbent underpants
Sleeping bag liners
Moisture alarms that go off when the child begins to wet the bed

There is no reason for punishment if your child wets the bed. Your
child cannot help it. Talk to your doctor about treatment options and
following these coping tips may help:

Be patient, understanding and attentive
Do not talk about the bedwetting in front of others
Talk to your child about how the bladder works
Avoid fluids in the hours before bed

Source

Links

Bed-wetting: Tips to Help Your Child

Nemours Has Great Resources for Reading and Health

I ran across this Nemours website by accident looking for developmental reading resources and I found so much more. I hope you find it as useful as I have in looking at reading and health subjects in a very concise and accessible format.

READING

HEALTH

TEACHERS

Teacher Site for Health Topics By Grade Level