Interview of Dr. Georges Picherot, medical specialist, head of the pediatric department at Chu de Nantes.
When should I go to a doctor?
When the child is over five years old Up to five years, there is not much to do, it is often a matter of bladeless immaturity. It is necessary to allow time for maturation and learning.
We really talk about enuresis, from the age of five. And here it is important to go to a doctor. First, to check that it is not the symptom or the consequence of a disease.
Then the doctor will take care of the child and his parents. The child is very anxious about this problem. Parents, for their part, seek their share of responsibility. They often feel guilty or respond to their stress by anger at the child.
The doctor will simply recall how things are going in the child's body. He will explain it to the parents and to the child himself. It will help to dramatize the situation and give practical answers. He will also propose a behavioral management to the parents, but especially to the child himself so that he feels himself active in his cure.
- To read: When to bring your child to the psychiatrist?
It has long been said that the origin was psychological. This is not your opinion?
This can happen, of course. But, I think that enuresis is not a psychological problem. On the other hand, it causes real psychological problems.
You imagine a child who does not dare to go to friends, who does not dare to leave for a weekend in the family or go to summer camps or school outings, for fear that everyone laughs at him. It is a real suffering. He ends up having a totally degraded image of him. And this can cause major complexes, or even a real depression. This may even have an impact on his academic performance. So it is important not to trivialize. That is, take the problem for what it is. And there are answers adapted to each child. You have to talk to the doctor.
What should not be done?
Do not make it a family conflict. It's true that it's stressful for everyone. For the mother who will be forced to do extra laundry, for the dad who wants to be able to take his child to the friends at the weekend. But, the worst answer is mockery or reprimands. It must be remembered that the child has nothing to do with it. You must also avoid talking about it all the time. This should not become the obsession of evening and bedtime. He must be congratulated when he manages to restrain himself or be clean, but do not scold him when he can not.
So what works?
It is the gratification, the valuation that gives the best results. And the explanation, too. The child must be able to understand what is happening. He must know that he is not the only one to whom it happens. He must be reassured. He must be the actor of his healing.
For this, the child must be able to understand how his bladder works. Treating it like a baby is not the right solution. Parents often lose patience because they themselves do not trust. They have the impression that it will never end. But, it must be remembered: it always happens.You want to react, to give your testimony or to ask a question? Appointment in our FORUMS children or A doctor answers you !
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