The August 28, 2014, issue of the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a case study documenting chiropractic helping a young boy who was suffering from long-term bedwetting. The study begins by pointing out that all infants begin life without the ability to control their bladder. As children grow, they first gain the ability to control their bladder during the day, and then some time afterward, during the night.
Nocturnal enuresis (NE), more commonly known as "bedwetting", is defined in the study as "...the recurrent involuntary passage of urine during sleep by a child aged five years or older who has never achieved consistent night-time dryness." The authors note that bedwetting also can create self-esteem issues, and can lead to emotional abuse by siblings and parents. Treatment has typically been behavioral therapy, alarm therapy, and pharmacologic therapy. Most of these therapies take quite a long time and are mostly ineffective.
In this case, a ten-year-old boy who was suffering from long-term bedwetting was brought to the chiropractor. He was having the problem regularly and had never gone for more than two or three weeks without an episode. Prior care included behavioral modification and alarm therapy, which was not successful. The problem created considerable embarrassment for the young boy, and he was reluctant to sleep at friends' houses as he was afraid he might wet the bed.
The study reports that a physical examination was performed which included a postural examination, neurological screening, muscle strength and reflex tests, sensory testing, cranial nerve testing, and a chiropractic examination for vertebral subluxations. From the examination, it was determined that subluxations were present in the boy's spine at the upper neck and at the base bone.
Specific chiropractic adjustments were delivered for correction of the subluxations. Chiropractic adjustments were given on a weekly basis and no other form of care was used. By the fourth week of care, the boy's mother reported that her son had only wet the bed once since the care began. On several other occasions, her son woke up "just in time" to make it to the bathroom.
By the eighth week of chiropractic care, no other episodes of bedwetting had occurred. As a result, the boy felt confident enough to stay overnight at friends' homes. His mother also noted a positive change in his attitude and self esteem. The boy continued to receive chiropractic care on a wellness basis and did not have any bedwetting issues over the next two years.
In the study conclusion, the authors wrote, "This case study adds to the growing body of literature that supports a link between chiropractic care and improvements in NE (nocturnal enuresis)."