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Most parents wait a year to seek continence help

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Three-fifths of families whose children suffer from continence issues delay seeking help for their offspring by more than 12 months, new research has revealed.

The findings of an online poll - commissioned by ERIC - indicate that 60% of parents wait more than a year before taking action to treat problems such as soiling and bedwetting. As a result, the children’s charity has launched a new campaign called STOP the Issue Ballooning in a bid to prompt mothers and fathers to seek advice and treatment sooner.

More than 1,000 families were questioned in the survey, which found that nearly a fifth (18%) of those sought medical help after more than 12 months had passed, while a tenth (11%) said it took them between one to two years. A further 27% claimed to have taken action after two years or longer.

Jenny Perez, director of ERIC, said: “We regularly hear parents that contact ERIC say they wish they got help earlier. We know from experience that the earlier families get help for childhood continence problems, the better. There is no need for children and young people to suffer unnecessarily and in the majority of cases, a solution can be found.”

She added that one in 12 youngsters and teenagers feel ashamed and isolated as a result of issues with continence.

“The STOP the Issue Ballooning Campaign will raise awareness to let families know they aren’t alone and help is available from ERIC. Last year, ERIC helped 120,000 families. This year, we want to reach 10,000 more,” she said.

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