Mind Your Body (02nd July 2009)

This is one section of The Straits Times on every Thursday. This is something I will read and will not miss it even I have no time (Make time). This has provided me plenty of information about Medical and health issues. Almost all the articles published are from the experts such as doctors, medical researcher, nurses, etc.

This week, there are two topics that really interest me. Taming tantrums and Stop those night leaks (Bedwetting) and would like to share with everyone here. (I shan’t extract the whole article here but will share information that will be useful to me at least when I revisit this post again.)

Taming Tantrums

This article highlights the followings:

  1. Children can sense when their parents become frustrated and may respond with even more tantrums, so keeping cool is important.
  2. Infants younger than 12 months throw a tantrum, unlike toddlers; it is not to test your limits, so it is important to check what is bothering them and to alleviate their fear and anxiety.
    1. If babies are left alone, they may have sense of insecurity
    2. Babies signal their hunger, tiredness or emotions by throwing a tantrum too.
  3. Toddlers express their frustration at not being able to get what they want, even babies do so.

Doctors’ advice:

  1. Keep cool.
  2. Part of growing up.
  3. Limit-setting.
  4. Parent should try to figure out the reason and address the child’s needs – a process eased by regular parent-child interaction.
  5. Give the child sufficient attention.
  6. A hug.
  7. Try to distract them.
  8. Toddlers want autonomy, so giving them control over little things will help minimize tantrums.
  9. Give them choice.

Stop those night leaks

This article highlights the followings:

Fact:

  1. For unknown reasons, bedwetting is three times more prevalent among boys than girls. However, it is not a sign of underlying disease.
  2. Almost 20% of children aged five commonly bedwet. Bedwetting affects those aged five to 18 too but 15% in this age group can overcome it without treatment.
  3. 1% of the population still bedwet in adulthood.
  4. Studies have shown that constant bedwetting can affect the child’s psycho-social development, resulting in low self-esteem and poor social adjustment. It can also cause anxiety in parents and other family members, as well as deter healthy outdoor activities like travelling and school camps.
  5. Although the exact cause of bedwetting remains unknown, some doctors think it may be hereditary or due to a lack of bladder control and capacity, deep sleep, hormone deficiency or social factors. 44% chance of bedwetting if one parent had bedwet when young, and 68% if both parents were bedwetters.
  6. Children with bedwetting problems may have a lower level of the antidiuretic hormone (ADH), which suppresses the rate of urine production at night. (About 30% of children have it.)
  7. Stress from starting school and exams are also factors that may contribute to bedwetting .Psychological stress(for older children) includes the birth of a new sibling, parental divorce or separation, death in the family, problems at school or child abuse.
  8. Bedwetting does not stem from poor potty training, and in most cases, the problem will cease when the child grows older.
  9. Children aged 6 to 12, or even those in their teens, who are toilet-trained, may have a sudden onset of bedwetting too. This condition, known as secondary nocturnal enuresis, is defined as bedwetting that develops after at least six months of dryness. (8% of children develop secondary nocturnal enuresis by the age of 10.)

Treatments:

  1. Motivational therapy. Use star charts and reward systems for children aged 5 to 7 to reward them for dry nights.
  2. Bladder training. Encourage the child to delay daytime urination by doing stretching exercise. This may help child’s bladder to hold more urine at night.
  3. Enuresis alarm. A device comprises a moisture sensor and an alarm unit. The sensor is placed in the child’s underwear and when a few drops of urine fall onto the sensor, it triggers the alarm unit which emits sounds or vibrations which wake the child so he can go the bathroom. This is a conditioning process, the child will gradually learns to sense when his bladder is full and to wake up before he wets the bed.
  4. Medication for lack of ADH. Desmopressin, a medication which comes in a nose spray or pill, taken every night before bedtime. It cost $50 to more than $100 per month.

Tips for parents:

  1. Put a night light in the bathroom so that the child can easily make his way there at night.
  2. Cover mattress with a plastic sheet or use waterproof protector.
  3. Get the child to rinse his underwear and pyjamas. Let the child take responsibility over their act.
  4. Motivate the child to overcome the problem.
  5. Do not punish your child. Kids do not wet the bed to irritate you.
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