Bed-wetting and Chiropractic
By Dr. Giselle Chamberlain BSc, DC, CACCP
Most children wet the bed for the first few years of life but manage to stabilize by age 4 to 5 years old. Bed-wetting, called nocturnal enuresis, is the inability to establish this bladder control, causing involuntary urination.
Enuresis can sometimes be due to a pathological mechanism, such as a neurogenic bladder but many times parents are told that no cause can be identified and they will have to wait until their child grows out of it. This results in most cases being left untreated. These kids would definitely benefit from chiropractic assessment and treatment.
Emptying of the urinary bladder is controlled by two muscles, which have a nerve supply that come from the area of the tailbone, called the sacrum. This nerve supply specifically comes from the sacral parasympathetic nerves from S2-S4. Appropriate bladder function is also controlled by a diaphragm, which derives its nerve supply from the L2 spinal nerve.
In a typical case chiropractors would examine the function of the lumbar spine and sacral segments. The sacrum develops as 5 sacral segments, which slowly fuse to one another from the time of puberty until the mid 20’s. Because they are separate segments during the early years of life, it is possible to have misaligned segments from repeated falls and the early attempts at walking. Misaligned vertebrae and segments in the spine can cause nerve irritation, and thereby contribute to bed-wetting.
Parents who have children who are dealing with wetting the bed at night, and who have been told that there is no apparent cause, should consider their next step to be to have their child evaluated for the possibility of spinal misalignments as the underlying cause.
Dr. Giselle Chamberlain has completed the Chiropractic Pediatric 180 hours of certification training through the ICPA (International Chiropractic Pediatric Association). This rigorous program offers techniques and protocols of care for children and perinatal clients, providing a level of training and expertise additional to what is offered in chiropractic colleges. For further information, or to book an appointment, please call 604-255-7777 or email at info@evolvevitality