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Bedwetting alarms

bed wetting; alarms; bladder/ brain training chart; enuresis; alarm; bell; wee; urine; wet; bed; chart ;


This topic is about how to use bedwetting alarms.  To find out why bedwetting happens and what to do about bedwetting, see the topic "Bedwetting".

If you and your family decide to try a bed wetting alarm, make sure you get a lot of information about how to use it from your doctor or the person who is hiring it to you (your chemist or nurse). 

Remember you don't have to use an alarm if the bedwetting is only now and again or if it is not worrying you – you are most likely to grow out of it by the time you are ten years old or so even if you don't use an alarm.

You need to be at least 7 or 8 years old to be able to use alarms because it's a job you need to be in charge of.

You may need some help at first from a parent or carer.

How bed-wetting alarms work

bell alarmThe two main sorts of alarm are the:

  • pad and bell (the pad goes onto the bed)
  • the personal alarm (which goes onto your pyjamas or underpants).

They both work in a similar way. When your wee touches the sensor, the alarm goes off.

Getting into the routine

Your doctor or nurse will usually give you a routine to follow, which could be like this:

  • Learn how to turn the alarm on and off.
  • Learn how to change your bed quickly. Get mum or dad to show you how if you are big enough to do it by yourself.
  • Have clean sheets and pyjamas ready by the bed.
  • Test the alarm and hop into bed.
  • Have a torch handy or ask if a light can be left on so that you can go straight to the toilet when you wake up.
  • When the alarm sounds get up and go to the toilet.
  • Take any wet sheets off the bed, dry the plastic covers, and put on dry sheets.
  • Work out with mum or dad or whoever cares for you, where to put the wet sheets and pyjamas, and put them there.
  • Wipe the sensor with a wet cloth then dry it.
  • Set the sensor and get back into bed.
  • Keep a chart to show you how well you are training your bladder and brain to work together when you are asleep. You could use the chart at the end of this topic, or your doctor may have given you one already.

At first you may be wakened more than once during the night - so you'll get really good at the routine.

Often it will be suggested that you will use the alarm for 10 weeks then stop because a lot of children will be able to stay dry at night after they have used the alarm for this time. Some children need to use the alarm for more weeks than this. Some need to use it for 6 months or more.

wet bedIf you start having problems again you can start using the alarm again.

Some people find that they start wetting again a few weeks after they finish using the alarm. If you are one of them don't worry. It just means that your body was not ready to be dry all the time yet.

You can try again later when your body might be ready

Your bladder/brain co-operation chart

There is a chart to help you keep track of how well you are training your bladder and brain to work together. 

PDF document icon - smallClick here to see the chart. You might also like to print it out.

You and your parents or carers may decide to put stars on the chart for dry nights and even test out your bladder after 2 dry weeks by having an extra drink before bedtime!

Print out the chart. You may want your parent or carer to help you fill in the chart every day.

You will need to ask mum or dad or your carer to get some stick-on stars or a star ink stamp. Every dry night you could get a star on your chart. This way you will be able to see when you are making progress.

Dr Kate says:

Dr Kate

"Sometimes using an alarm can work really quickly, other times it may take several tries. So, don't get too upset if you have to use the alarm for a second or third time."


Waking up wet is not very nice.
Pyjamas all soggy, bedclothes like ice.
Makes me feel sad, deep down inside.
Makes me feel that I want to hide.
One dry week then two go by.
Soon everyday I'll wake up dry.

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We've provided this information to help you to understand important things about staying healthy and happy. However, if you feel sick or unhappy, it is important to tell your mum or dad, a teacher or another grown-up.


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