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Tips for sleepovers and camps

Sleepovers and school camps are an important part of school life in Australia and this can be a very exciting time. However, for children who continue to wet the bed sleepovers can be a cause of distress and worry. Some children may avoid sleepovers. The good news is that many children manage to stay dry on camps and sleepovers and have a great time despite all the worry.

Things to consider 

When is the camp or sleepover?

You need to allow enough time to prepare for a camp or sleepover and trial different strategies in the familiarity of your own home. We encourage seeking professional help.

How old is your child and how much responsibility can they take on their own?

Some children may be able to clean up discreetly if bedwetting occurs, but you may also need to tell the adult who is supervising your child about the bedwetting so they are prepared to assist your child.

Is your child going to require protection for themselves and / or the bed? 

If so, your child will need to learn ways of using products such as bed pads which can be discreetly placed in sleeping bags.You will also need to teach your child how to discreetly dispose of products, for example by setting an alarm clock earlier than others so they can get up and dispose of products in a suitable rubbish bin.

Does your child get up to the toilet during the night?

Ensure your child is orientated to their new surroundings and that they are aware that they should go to the toilet before bed and again just before sleep. During camps and sleepovers children tend to talk for sometime after retiring and the bladder will be re-filling. Ensure a night light or torch is available to find the toilet.

What to pack

  • Wipes for your child to maintain their hygiene after bedwetting. This will reduce body smells.
  • Plastic bags to dispose of the washable or disposable products.
  • Ensure enough products for the duration of the sleepover or camp.
  • Medication if required.
  • Extra clothing and underwear.

Tips for supervising someone else's child with a bedwetting problem

If you are aware that a child has a bedwetting problem, it's important to let them know that you are available to assist them. You should tell them how they can access you during the night, but do not dwell on the issue.

Prior to the camp or sleepover be aware of:

  • the amount of responsibility you need to take for the child - younger children may require full assistance such as help to change bedding or pull-ups, while older children may only need assistance if they ask for it
  • how to help the child with using and disposing of products
  • toileting regimes if required
  • any medication the child is taking and its side effects, and
  • other management strategies that may be required.

It is very important to remember how sensitive this issue is to children. Be careful to always respect their privacy. Never discuss the bedwetting with other people or your own children unless you have been given permission to do so by the parent and the child.