Bed-wetting or enuresis, is often thought by many to be treated primarily through the help of a general practitioner. This is actually not true, many parents bring their children to see a chiropractor to help wipe out the problem.
Bed wetting primarily affects children in the years before pre-pubescence. Most children wet the bed for the first few years of life, generally by the age of 4 to 5 years old, most children have broken the habit. For those who struggle to do so, the chiropractor is a very viable, non invasive approach. Enuresis refers to the inability of a child to establish this proper bladder control resulting in either daytime or nocturnal involuntary urination.
There are a number of different variations of enuresis. Primary enuresis occurs in a child over five years of age, who has never been able to establish proper bladder control. Secondary enuresis is the diagnosis for the child who has been able to establish proper bladder control, but who has since lapsed back to wetting the bed. Occasionally a pathological mechanism such as neurogenic bladder may be responsible, but is typically not the case.
The traditional chiropractic approach to treating the child who is a bed-wetter is to adjust the spine, usually in the area of the lumbar spine or sacrum. There are specific reasons that these areas are targeted. The body’s ability to empty the urinary bladder is controlled by the detrusor and trigone muscles. The nerve supply to these muscles is via the sacral parasympathetic nerves from S2 to S4. Normal bladder function is also controlled by the urogenital diaphragm which derives its nerve supply from the L2 spinal nerve.
The sacrum develops as five individual segments as the body grows. These segments remain separated until a child reaches puberty, at which time fusion of one sacral segment to another commences. Eventually, the sacrum will be one single bone with all five segments fused together, but this does not occur until the mid-20s. Because the sacrum consists of separate segments during the early years of life, it is possible that misalignment of these segments can cause nerve irritation or facilitation, which means that controlling the area is much harder to do, especially if asleep. This nerve facilitation, especially to the area of the bladder, may be the cause of the inappropriate bladder function associated with bed-wetting.
Other theories for bed wetting is the trauma that the sacrum takes as we age. Crawling, and constant movement that is seen in the early stages of life can be a cause in shifting alignment and affecting bladder control.
Consult your primary care physician or chiropractor for any medical related advice.
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