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Bed-Wetters Less Likely to Have Been Breast-Fed

Breast-feeding for more than three months linked to lower risk of bed-wetting in childhood

WEDNESDAY, July 5 (HealthDay News) -- Children who wet their beds are significantly less likely to have been breast-fed than children who do not wet their beds, according to a study in the July issue of Pediatrics.

Joseph G. Barone, M.D., of the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Brunswick, N.J., and colleagues compared breast-feeding histories of 55 children aged 5 to 13 who wet their beds during sleep at least twice a week with 117 matched controls who did not wet their beds. The 55 subjects did not have problems of the urinary tract or the central nervous system.

The researchers found that only 45.5 percent of the bed-wetters had been breast-fed, compared to 81.2 percent of the controls. The children who did not wet their beds had greater household incomes and tended to have fewer siblings than bed-wetters.

After adjusting for income, family size and other factors, the bed-wetters were less likely to have been breast-fed than the children in the control group (odds ratio, 0.283). Among all breast-fed children in the study, controls tended to have been breast-fed an average of three months longer than cases.

"Breast-feeding longer than three months may protect against bed-wetting during childhood," the authors write. "Breast milk supplemented with formula did not make a difference in the rate of enuresis."

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