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Video games used to treat childhood bed-wetting

Games treating bed-wetting

Pediatric urologists in Austin, TX. are using video games to help children who frequently wet the bed or suffer from other urinary accidents, KVUE News reports.

In a treatment called bio-feedback therapy, children are given a series of exercises to do to strengthen their pelvic floor muscles. They then begin the video game therapy, which involves having small electromyogram pads attached to their legs. These pads detect muscle movements and twitches, and the characters in the games are controlled through the contraction and release of these muscles.

"The challenge was really looking at a way to help children identify muscles that they didn't even know they had," said Leslie McQuiston, a pediatric urologist at Children's Urology.

In one game shown in KVUE's report, a child plays as a fairy who has to transform bees into tiny pink fairies. Using her pelvic muscles, she activates each transformation whenever the bees encounter her character. The muscles that she is learning to control are the same ones used to control urinary incontinence.

According to KVUE's report, some children only need to do the pelvic floor exercises, while others need the full biofeedback therapy with video games.

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