The most important thing to consider is the child's willingness to use the alarm. While studies have found that alarms can be effective at helping the child conquer his or her bedwetting (or nocturnal enuresis), many do so reluctantly for fear of parents forcing the use of the devise on their children. Look at it this way: if someone forced you to undertake a program that involved you being woken by an alarm in the middle of every night, you probably wouldn't be impressed. Needless to say, as parents we must put the being trustworthy, loving, and kind to our children above all.
Embarking on a program of dry-bed training with an alarm requires that the child fully understand what it involves, and really wants to use the alarm to stop wetting the bed.
Most alarms work on by using a sensor on the child's underwear that then sends a signal to an small box which is the actual alarm. The alarm sounds and the child wakes up. The only major difference in the basic functioning of bedwetting alarms is a clip versus pouch. The former is self-explanatory, a small clip which is attached to the alarm is simply clipped onto the child's underwear. The later is sold with underwear with a pouch by the waistband. In this pouch (closed usually by a hook-and-loop fastener) goes the wireless transmitter. The upside of this type is that it can be more comfortable for some children. The downside is that you have to buy the alarm with the right size underwear for your child, and if the supplied pairs are soiled, then you can't use the alarm.
In an ideal world, every bedwetting alarm would work perfectly for everybody. Since that's not the case, let's take a look at the most common problems people have with the alarms they've bought.There are 2 main problems that people tend to encounter with bedwetting alarms:
It's too quiet
If you child is wetting the bed, then chances are they are a deep sleeper. But if your child is indeed a very deep sleeper, then you'll need to consider how loud the alarm is. Some alarms are simply too quiet to wake some children. If you're not sure, perhaps the best solution is to go for one of the many alarms on the market that enable you to switch between various alarms.
It's not sensitive enough
Another problem many people have with bedwetting alarms is that their not sensitive enough. The child wets the bed and the alarm doesn't sound. We've found this can one of those "you get what you pay for" situations, but there are some extra troubleshooting tips we've also found useful.
First, we recommend you carefully follow the instructions on provided with the alarm. Alarms usually work by attaching a small clip or wireless device to underwear that the child wears to bed. Sometimes the clip can come undone, so make sure its securely on and the underwear isn't too loose fitting.
Second, change the batteries! It's one of those age old broken technology things we can sometimes forget (like turning it off and on again). Try putting fresh, or freshly charged, batteries in your alarm before deciding it doesn't work. Finally, sometimes the sensor, or the clip attaching onto the child's underwear, gets compromised by urine build-up. To get rid of this build-up, soak the sensor in a 1-part vinegar, 3-part water solution for 20 minutes. After, simply give it a little scrub with warm soapy water with the tip of a cloth, or an old toothbrush.
With all this in mind, you're ready to purchase your bedwetting alarm. Best of luck!