Bedwetting in Older Adults: Why Is It Happening?

Bedwetting in Older Adults: Why Is It Happening?

 April 15, 2022

A woman laying in bed with her head on the pillow.

Bedwetting is a sign that something is off, especially in the elderly. There are many reasons it can happen, and it’s important to address them. Your mom’s bladder control is worsening. Twice now, she’s woken up while wetting the bed. She’s embarrassed and ashamed. Offer her the emotional support she needs such as a caregiver while talking to her doctor about the common reasons for bedwetting in older adults.

Urinary Incontinence

When women have a baby, it impacts the abdominal muscles. After menopause, she may find it’s more noticeable. The muscles in the pelvic floor may weaken and cause urinary leakage when a woman coughs sneezes or laughs. Your mom may be experiencing this.

She flips over or stretches in her sleep and some urine leaks out. If that’s what’s happening, she should limit how much she drinks after dinner. Make sure she empties her bladder before going to sleep. Your mom may want to put an incontinence pad in place before bed, just in case.

Urinary Tract Infections

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is a common cause of sudden bedwetting. It’s important to address this with your mom’s doctor. You don’t want the infection to worsen and reach the kidneys.

UTIs occur when bacteria make it into the urethra. Some of the signs of a UTI in the elderly include unexplained irritability, fever, frequent urination, and difficulty concentrating. If tests find a UTI is present, prescription antibiotics will be used to treat it.

Medication Side Effects

Does your mom take any prescription medications that cause drowsiness? Her bedwetting issues could be related to that. If she is so heavily asleep that she doesn’t wake up in time to empty her bladder, it can lead to accidents.

Talk to her doctor about the best time to take her pills. If she’s taking them right before bed with a full glass of water, she’s going to need someone to wake her up to avoid an accident. Ask if there are alternatives that work effectively without the drowsiness.

If she has to take her medications before bed, it may help to have a caregiver aide to make sure she is avoiding liquids several hours before bed. If she’s thirsty, she can sip water rather than have an entire glass. Limit the amount of water she takes her pills with.

Hire Help With Personal Care

Finally, hire a personal caregiver to make sure your mom is voiding her bladder throughout the day and cleaning properly after. As UTIs are one of the reasons bedwetting occurs, it’s important to make sure she’s maintaining proper hygiene.

Talk to a home care agency about scheduling personal care at home. Your mom has the support she needs with grooming, bathing, and hygiene, which gives you peace of mind.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring a Caregiver in South Side, PA, please contact the caring staff at In-Home Quality Care today. Serving the Greater Pittsburgh Area since 1990! Call412-421-5202