Childhood diseases treatment options

Some physical problems occur mainly in children and adolescents. On this page you can find information on some of these childhood diseases and problems. At the bottom of the page you can find a list of decision aids that can help you to determine the best approach to the problem of your child. The following problems will be discussed:

  • Bedwetting (nocturnal enuresis)
  • Ear pain (earache, otitis media)
  • Tonsillitis
  • Wisdom teeth extraction
  • Umbilical hernia (navel rupture)
  • Circumcision


At age six, one in eight children wets the bed occasionally. Often, bedwetting disappears spontaneously when the child gets older, but not always. Bedwetting can be tackled by using a moisture alarm (which goes off as soon as the child loses urine) or by letting the child practice with leaving his bed and going to the toilet. If these things do not work, temporary use of drugs could be considered. At the bottom of this page you will find decision aids that help you determine if it is time for toilet training and/or visiting a doctor.

Ear pain

Depending on its cause, ear pain can be treated with antibiotics, ear tubes (also known as grommets) and surgery. Down this page, some decision aids are listed that can help you to determine whether your child should be treated, and if so how.


If your child often suffers from tonsillitis, you can decide to have his tonsils removed (�tonsillectomy�). The decision aids below can assist you in making this choice.

Wisdom teeth

If wisdom teeth hurt, they can be removed. Whether it is time for extraction, depends on the severity of the pain and how you and your child view the surgery. See the relevant decision aid.

Umbilical hernia

In case of an umbilical hernia, the membranes of the abdominal wall bulge through a weak area in the abdominal wall. This is visible as a swelling around the navel. Most hernias in young infants heal spontaneously. Sometimes, it is necessary to repair the hernia by surgery, for instance because the hernia is growing or because it is bothering your child. You can use the relevant decision aid to decide if your child should have surgery or if you want to wait and see first.


Worldwide, one in six men is circumcised. Circumcision can lead to infection, but this risk can be reduced by carrying out the circumcision in specialized centres. If you want more information on the pros and cons of circumcision of boys, please use the appropriate decision aid.

Childhood diseases decision aids

The decision aids listed below tell you mare about the different treatment options for the childhood diseases mentioned earlier. Please discuss the decision aids with a doctor, before you make your final decision.

Bedwetting (OHRI): multiple decision aids about possible approaches EN

Ear pain: ear tubes or no ear tubes NL

Ear pain (OHRI): multiple decision aids about the treatment methods EN

Tonsillitis: having the tonsils removed or not NL

Tonsillitis (OHRI): having the tonsils removed or not EN

Wisdom teeth (OHRI): extraction or not EN

Umbilical hernia (OHRI): surgery or no surgery EN

Circumcision (OHRI): yes or no EN