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My two-year-old son has lately been urinating a lot in his diaper at night, to the point that it is completely full in the morning and if we don't change it right as he gets up the urine he's been holding in because the diaper is full will soon come out and wet his pants.

He has also made a habit of, if he is not wearing pants/shorts, pulling his diaper down a little if it's full and urinating.

This morning I was alerted to the fact that my son had woken up because he kept complaining about a "mess" from his bedroom. I went in to his bedroom to discover that, at some point during the night, he had taken off his pajamas and wet the bed. I don't know if he had pulled his diaper down as well, but it looked like he had adjusted it (perhaps pulled it down a little and then pulled it back up). This was the first time he had wet the bed.

For a few weeks now my wife and I have been putting on larger diapers (two sizes larger than his normal size) when he goes to sleep to increase the urine storage capacity. Clearly, though, this effort has not been enough. What else can we do to

  • keep him from wetting the bed again while still in diapers?
  • keep him from taking off his pajamas at night?
  • keep him from pulling down his diaper when he doesn't have pants/shorts on?

I know there are diaper booster pads and overnight diapers. We haven't tried any of these yet. We've also recently quit giving him any milk right before bed.

The pajamas he took off last night were zipper onesies. I was surprised he was able to get it off.

Additional, possibly related note: my son has also made a habit of pulling stool out of his diaper if the back opening of his diaper is accessible and we don't change his diaper soon (usually due to his refusal for us to change his diaper).

  • This is a normal part of development. Most children don't seem to get potty training until about 3-4 years old. They may even treat it as a game. I've had clean my kids' room more than once because there was "number 2" all over the room from when they refused to tell us they'd made a mess. You have to simply try and encourage them to use the potty. They will get it sooner or later, but it's definitely not abnormal. – phyrfox Dec 5 '16 at 7:27
  • @phyrfox, my kid's still in diapers. We haven't started potty training yet. – NeutronStar Dec 5 '16 at 16:10
  • These are clear signals he's ready to potty train. Give him the opportunity before bed and at first wake. – bishop Dec 5 '16 at 19:37
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The (currently) top-voted and accepted answer to this question works for us.

Take a one-piece pajama, the sort with long arms and legs, but without feet, that has a zipper running from one leg to the top, and put it on backwards. It's completely tamper-proof, easy to "service", and ought to be equally comfortable.

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I have a one year old who frequently has very full diapers when he awakes. I would highly recommend looking into overnight diapers. We started them when he was smaller as we are fortunate that he liked to sleep overnight early. They work incredibly well! If you use overnight diapers, aim for ones that are the right size. A diaper that is the right size may help with the pulling of it off. It sounds like he only does that when the diaper gets too full and becomes very uncomfortable. If the diaper is absorbing more liquid it could help him with the discomfort.

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I think your missing the two most likely interventions to work:

1) Give him less liquids in the evening. If he cries, offer small amounts only.

2) Either you or your wife perform a 3 a.m. diaper change. It's not like you haven't had to do this before.

Personally, I think diapers that don't fit are a bad idea.

Although I don't support it, there are medications for enuresis of childhood if everything else fails.

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    The child is two. I don't know a doctor alive who would diagnose enuresis in a two-year-old let alone medicate for it. – anongoodnurse Dec 5 '16 at 4:40
  • Correct. About the earliest would be 6 – Stu W Dec 5 '16 at 13:25
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    I would suggest instead of waking at 3 am to change the diaper, I would do it whenever the adults go to bed, which I assume is at least a few hrs after the child goes to bed. In my experience with a very heavy wetter, most of it happens in the early evening right after the child goes to sleep. So by changing him at 10 or 11 pm (assuming a 7 or 8 pm bedtime) you will get rid of most of the wetness AND avoid having to wake up early (or being woken up by an uncomfortable toddler). Also, put a pee-pad (like people use for puppies) under him in case he undresses. – Jax Dec 12 '16 at 1:43
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If you aren't using them already, try overnight diapers. You might want to try different brands. You also night want to try diaper pads. They fit into the diaper and can hold quite a bit. Just as an example, in the US, Sposie has booster pads.

For the pulling down of the diaper, perhaps duct tape might work.

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    Duct tape has been suggested numerous times on this site as a fix for various problems. I'm starting to get scared... – Dariusz Dec 5 '16 at 11:39
  • When we potty trained just over the 3y line we didn't do overnights right away; using the Pampers brand "Underjams" pullup product was the only way we avoided leaks from too much liquid. – Don Dec 6 '16 at 18:42

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