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ADHD Parents Together
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Please help- dysfunctional bladder

My son is almost 11 and was diagnosed with severe ADHD about 2 years ago. He also what they call “dysfunctional bladder”. Sometimes he can’t tell when urine is coming out or doesn’t know he has to go. We have been to a pediatric urologist and they have not been able to help. Does anyone else have a child with this issue? If so, what has helped? Thank you for any feedback.

5 Replies

Hi! I’m so sorry you are dealing with this. My 7 year old daughter (ADHD/ODD/SPD) has these same symptoms for the past year, but her psychiatrist and pediatrician did not provide a diagnosis. They tested for bacteria and moved on and stated that OT should be helpful but that hasn’t helped.

It is frustrating because it is having a social toll on top of everything else. She swears she did not know she had to go. This seems similar to her thirst and hunger sensation.

She has a follow-up tomorrow and I plan to broach it again. I will let you know if I have and success.

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Thank you. If I learn anything new I will pass it along as well.



My son had a similar problem.

I also scheduled a consultation with the pediatric urologist. They scanned his bladder and confirmed , that his bladder doesn’t empty completely and that is why he can’t feel the urine coming out. It has been such a discomfort for my son. He was afraid to go to sleepovers and almost every day after school his underwear was soiled. Doctor suggested that every time he had to go to the bathroom to pee , stay seated and count to 20 and try to pee again. At night we started using a monitor( ordered at Amazon) that will start making noice once it detected any moisture. I informed his teachers about the issue , so they would let my son go to the bathroom and take his time. It took about 8 months and now he doesn’t have any problems. I hope this helps.

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My son who recently turned age 12 is doing so much better now. His urination started at age 6 just out of the blue, he had a few accidents before but at age 6 it was constant, coming home from school wet. He will used the bathroom then a few minutes later wet himself, we did the counting after you pee to empty his bladder, we put him on a schedule, plastic on the bed, doctors checked him, my mother suggested for him to drink more milk, no liquids after 5pm etc.. for 6 1/2 years until now. What changed I guess it's the maturity. ONE THING FOR SURE IT WAS ON HIS TIME. No matter how frustrated I got and reminded him he was getting older, is this not embarrassing, he stayed to his course We still have routines, the teachers tell him to go every bathroom break at least five a day , still counting, and at night instead of buying one of those alarms to notify him that he's about to pee, I purchased a clock and have him set it at night. It goes off, he gets up used the bathroom and back to bed. My oldest son had the same problem now 14, at age 11 out of the blue he got up in the middle of the night without prompting went to the bathroom and stop wetting himself altogether after that, this is after 6 or 7 years of wetting himself. I come to realizes that with both experiences that there's no magic solution, when you are in the middle of it you try everything, even get frustrated and now... The wisdom that I have learn, is to wait on them. Yes still have bathroom schedules at school, teacher involve, give them the responsibility accountability , then wait of them.

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Hi, I'm new to email, please excuse the delay in replying.

One of our children was recently assessed and the team believed, our child was too nice and he's able to play sports therefore could not possibly have ADHD. The tripping, falling, constant movement, extreme agitation at being required to stay still was typical of a 10 year old boy. He is a lot of fun to be around, helpful, interesting but it causes him pain when he falls and hurts himself, when he disappoints his teacher because he forgot his books and could not do his homework, again. His teacher is kind and supportive, He understands its not on purpose.

He too also has wet spots on his pants, damp accidents at night. They said this was not a sign of ADHD either. They said he had ignored the sensation so long his mind only registered the signal when dampness is felt. They said its not caused by inattention, even though he's come home from party's or matches wet.

Personality, we believe he has ADHD and the bladder issues are in twined. At home we support him as best we can and started recording the forgotten books, tripping, accidents etc. This way, we'll be much better prepared.

I wish I could be more helpful. Your Son will over come this because he has you. You want things to be better for him. Its difficult and frustrating but going through it with him, makes it easier than it would be without you advocating on his behalf. Love to you both.

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