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Getting to Dry
How to Help Your Child Overcome Bedwetting

By Max Maizels, Diane Rosenbaum, and Barbara Keating

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Review by Allison Martin

Eighty five percent of children have complete bladder control by age five (day and night); however for the 5 to 7 million children over 5 years old in the United States that have not achieved control this can become an ongoing dilemma. Getting to Dry : How to Help Your Child Overcome Bedwetting is the only book available by experts on this potentially frustrating topic. The three authors of Getting to Dry (a doctor, a clinical psychologist and a nurse), manage the 'Try for Dry' program at Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago. This book provides the benefit of their years of experience.

Getting to Dry explains that bedwetting is rarely caused by structural deficiencies (birth defects) or major psychological conditions, but is often due to physiological problems, such as small bladder capacity, deep sleep and diet. This book takes you through discussions of bedwetting and its psychological effects on the family, analysis of the problem, and into a number of solutions. Other issues which can effect enuresis are also discussed, including developmental disabilities and problems requiring surgery.

The heart of the book is a multi-modal program for alleviating bedwetting, which you can implement yourself (upon the agreement of your pediatrician). This program includes behavior modification and use of rewards, a bedwetting alarm, and modifications to diet. Medication is also discussed. Suppliers of enuresis alarms and materials are listed in the resources section in the back of the book to help you get started.

Its a relief to find this subject addressed in an authoritative manner, with practical solutions and without blame. Generally the tone of the book is medical but friendly. (Although I disagree with their emphasis on children washing their own bedding or clothes - especially for encopsis.) Overall the book is easy to read and apply.

Parents of preschoolers will find this book helpful in delineating the facts and recommendations for bedwetting problems. However, it is parents of older children who are best served by this book. If your older child is still wetting his or her bed at night, then Getting to Dry can assist you in developing a methodical plan of action to help your child achieve dryness.

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