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Best Bedwetting Alarms

Updated November 2018
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 16 Models Considered
  • 43 Hours Researched
  • 2 Experts Interviewed
  • 76 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best bedwetting alarms

    Last Updated November 2018

    Bedwetting is a common problem. As many as 20% of children over the age of five struggle to stay dry throughout the night. With a bit of compassion and a healthy dose of patience, some cases of bedwetting, also known as nocturnal enuresis, may resolve themselves over time. But for most parents – and children – a little assistance is more than welcome.

    Bedwetting alarms offer speedy intervention and have been shown to have a high success rate, both in younger children and adolescents. Whether you're looking for something unobtrusive or need an attention-grabbing option that won't be ignored, there are a host of bedwetting alarms to choose from. Finding the right one for your child is key.

    The BestReviews team is dedicated to helping consumers with all their shopping needs. This detailed guide will help you find the best bedwetting alarm for your family’s needs. Once you've familiarized yourself with the various options, don't forget to check out our five picks for the best bedwetting alarms.

    When first introducing a bedwetting alarm, explain to your child how it works. Let her know that it will help keep her dry by teaching her when she needs to wake up and go to the toilet.

    How bedwetting alarms work

    Bedwetting alarms typically consist of two main components: a moisture sensor and the alarm itself. In most cases, the sensor is clipped or taped to the underwear and must be strategically placed where the first drop of urine is anticipated.

    Once moisture comes into contact with the sensor, the alarm is triggered, and the ensuing beeping, ringing, or vibration awakens the child. This not only gives him a chance to get up and complete urination in the toilet, but it will eventually help him gain the ability to recognize and respond to his body’s signals without the use of an alarm.

    Some bedwetting alarms are wearable, with wires running from the sensor to the alarm, which is attached to the pajama top. Others are wireless with an alarm that may be placed on a nightstand or other nearby surface. More traditional styles have a sensor pad which is placed beneath the child and connects to the alarm via wires.

    While all bedwetting alarms work by rousing the child from sleep when moisture is detected, certain styles may work better for different age groups and sleep patterns.

    EXPERT TIP

    Many younger children sleep soundly. For the first few days, you may need to listen for the alarm and wake your child up yourself.


    Aimee  | Pediatric Occupational Therapist

    Types of bedwetting alarms

    Bedwetting alarms are available in three basic styles: wearable alarms, wireless alarms, and bell/pad alarms.

    Wearable bedwetting alarms

    This style features a sensor which is placed in the underwear for fast moisture detection. A wire runs from the sensor to the alarm. As the name implies, the alarm itself is attached to the pajamas, usually around the shoulder area. (For sound sleepers, this is a hard-to-ignore location.) A wearable alarm may have both sound and vibration options.

    Snug-fitting underwear is necessary for the correct placement of the sensor. Avoid boxer shorts and baggy pajama bottoms when using a bedwetting alarm.

    Wireless bedwetting alarms

    The sensor of a wireless bedwetting alarm also attached to the underwear, but the transmitter and receiver communicate without the use of wires. This allows the alarm to be placed anywhere in the room. Stationing the alarm away from your child’s bed means that she will have to get up to switch it off. Some wireless alarms include a parent unit, so you'll never miss an opportunity to give your child the hands-on assistance she needs.

    When using a wireless model, placing the alarm well away from your child’s bed will encourage a trip to the bathroom by forcing her to get up to turn it off.

    Bell-and-pad bedwetting alarms

    This style doesn't require a sensor to be attached to the underwear. Rather, a pad which acts as the sensor is placed beneath the child. As soon as urine leaks onto the pad, the alarm sounds. These may be preferable for body-conscious adolescents or active sleepers who might unintentionally disconnect the sensor while tossing and turning.

    EXPERT TIP

    A battery indicator is a handy feature that will ensure your child’s bedwetting alarm doesn't fail unexpectedly.


    Aimee  | Pediatric Occupational Therapist

    Bedwetting alarm features

    As long as a bedwetting alarm is able to quickly and accurately detect moisture and immediately alert you and your child that urination is occurring, it should be effective. Nevertheless, there are a handful of helpful features that are worth keeping an eye out for as you shop.

    • Adjustable volume: Being able to adjust the alarm volume to suit your child’s needs may seem like nothing more than a convenience, but this feature can be a godsend. Some children may be startled by an excessively loud alarm, which could lead to anxiety. And deep sleepers might not respond to anything less than full blast.

    • Variable tones: There's always the possibility that your child may become accustomed to a particular tone and find it easier to ignore, especially over a prolonged period of time. Switching up the tone every now and then will help ensure that both you and your child remain responsive to the alarm.

    • Lights: Deep sleepers sometimes need a little extra motivation. When used alongside sound and vibration, lights can help give your child the boost he needs to get up and moving.

    • Comfortable sensor: Some children may find even the most compact sensors intolerable. If you're unable to use a bell-and-pad bedwetting alarm for whatever reason, look for a soft, contouring silicone sensor.

    • Remote control: Some high-end wireless alarms come with a remote control. These are generally paired with a parent receiver unit and are designed to be used by caregivers to regulate alarm activity. A remote control can be an indispensable tool if you have more than one child and need to keep household sleep disturbances to a minimum.

    Choosing the right bedwetting alarm

    Consider the following factors when selecting a bedwetting alarm.

    Your child’s age and personality

    When selecting a bedwetting alarm, it's important to look beyond functionality. While wearable alarms work exceptionally well for most children, they're not for everyone. Older children or those who value their privacy will likely appreciate something more discreet. In this case, a wireless or bell-and-pad variety may be a better option.

    Consider the personality of your child’s siblings as well. Is there any possibility that a wearable alarm could elicit teasing from them? If so, choose a less-visible model. However, if your child is a sound sleeper, the proximity to the ear that a wearable alarm offers may be a crucial factor to its success.

    At the end of the day, no one understands your child’s needs better than you do, and using a little common sense can go a long way.

    Remain alert during the bedwetting alarm phase. Make sure you’re always available to help your little one reset his alarm and change into a dry pair of undies if necessary.

    Alarm size

    If you've determined that a wearable alarm is the best choice for your little one, avoid an overly bulky design. Instead, opt for a medium-size or compact model that won't pull on her pajamas or cause discomfort. If visibility is a concern, take the time to find a smaller alarm, and conceal the cords under your child’s pajama top. Having her wear a T-shirt between the cord and her skin can enhance comfort, too.

    Using pull-ups over underwear can help keep your child’s bedding dry.

    Aesthetic appeal

    Perhaps it’s not the most important factor for parents, but for a younger child, an attractive design can make using the alarm a bit more pleasant. If at all possible, select a color you know your little one likes, or better yet, allow him to choose his favorite hue himself. This little personal touch can pack a big punch in how readily he takes to using the alarm. Some manufacturers even make alarms in cute designs in an effort to make them more appealing to kids.

    Bedwetting alarm prices

    As with any product, the more features a bedwetting alarm comes with, the more it's likely to cost.

    • Budget bedwetting alarms: A basic model with a set volume and no added features can cost as little as $20 or $30.

    • Mid-range bedwetting alarms: For adjustable volume, multiple tones, and other convenient features, you can expect to pay anywhere between $50 and $150 for a bedwetting alarm.

    • High-end bedwetting alarms: Bedwetting alarms that pull out all the stops to make for a smoother experience range from $200 to $500 or more. Features like remote controls, extra receivers, and progress-monitoring apps generally don't come cheap, but for children and parents who need all the help they can get, a high-end model can be a lifesaver.

    If your bedroom is some distance away from your child’s, consider using a baby monitor to help keep tabs on alarm activity.

    FAQ

    Q. Why not simply use an alarm clock to wake my child throughout the night?
    A.
    Using an alarm clock may initially help keep your child dry, but it is unlikely to be an effective bedwetting solution in the long run. This is because there's simply no way to foresee what time your child will need to urinate. A bedwetting alarm trains your child’s brain to recognize and react to the sensation of a full bladder by waking her up at the first sign of moisture.

    Q. Why does the alarm sometimes go off even when my child hasn't wet his bed?
    A.
    Some sensors are extremely sensitive and detect even the slightest levels of moisture. While this is a good thing, perspiration may sometimes end up triggering the alarm. To keep this from happening, place a barrier between the skin and the sensor. For example, the sensor can be placed between two sets of underwear or wrapped in a handkerchief or tissue.

    Q. How long will it take for my child to have a completely dry night?
    A.
    This varies from child to child. While some experience success in a matter of days, others may not have an incident-free night for two weeks or longer. Even if your child remains dry for a few nights in a row, do not discontinue using the alarm until she has fully stopped bedwetting for three to four consecutive weeks.

    Most parents find that treatment is 100% successful by the 12-week mark and that their children are able to get themselves up and to the toilet even without the alarm. Parents should be available to offer care and assistance throughout this process, regardless of the duration.

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