Kids health

Ask an expert: Kids who frequently urinate

What to do when your child has to go to the bathroom often.

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Q: My five-year-old daughter is constantly going to the bathroom. She’s been to the hospital for tests, all of which were negative for infection, diabetes and irritation. The doctor says frequent urination is fairly common for children her age, and that it can be a combination of things, none physical. I am still concerned. Some days, she can go five to six times an hour.

A: While the range of what’s considered normal in urination is quite large, going five to six times an hour is outside that range. If it’s happening both at home and at school, and she’s not wetting herself, plus the physical evaluation showed nothing physical and there’s no clear emotional cause — your daughter might have a condition called extraordinary daytime urinary frequency syndrome (EDUFS). Yes, there really is such a thing.

With these cases (I see about six or seven a year), kids affected are commonly between age three and eight, and suddenly begin urinating every 10 to 20 minutes without pain or wetting themselves. Basic tests are normal. The good news — it disappears on its own, usually after three months.