Potty training can be unpredictable, messy, daunting, and lengthy (who knew it took so long to master the art of using the toilet?).
The key to potty training success is starting when your toddler is interested, willing, and physically able to. While some kids are ready as young as 18 months, others may not be prepared to learn until well past their third birthday. Some experts believe that boys are in diapers a bit longer than girls because they’re generally more active and may less likely to stop and take the time to use the potty.
Make your life easier with these simple tips:
Get the seat sorted
Like everything else in a toddler’s life, they can be a bit ‘choosy’ about the type of toilet seat they’ll sit on. So if they don’t seem to like the classic sit-down potty, try changing tactics with a soft-seated potty chair, or a child’s seat adapter. They come with all sorts of bright lights and gadgets these days. See what appeals to your toddler, and just aim to make the potty a fun place to visit.
The Program Approach
Set aside some time — say, the month before preschool or a vacation from work — and make a focused effort to promote potty use. Stay close to home, gently steer your toddler to the bathroom at predictable points in the day (though you should also ask if she needs to use the toilet to help her recognize the sensations), and sit near the potty while waiting for some action. At the end of the allotted time, your toddler will be somewhat accomplished.Making a concerted effort helps your little one concentrate on the task at hand. And regularly scheduled trips to the bathroom cut back on accidents.
Think Outside the Box (or Bowl)
Get all your creative hats in place because potty training needs some great deal of patience along with creativity skills that could put an agency to surprise! Make up a potty song, Get some jingles on or get your hands on some picture books that can be read only during potty time.
We set a timer, starting at every 30 minutes and increasing as we have success. When the timer goes off, my daughter says, “Potty time.” She feels she has control and we make a game of choosing which potty to sit on (toilet or potty chair). Each time, she gets excited to show me which potty she chooses. This has worked well. I get what I want (her sitting on the potty) and she has control over her choice of potty.
Get the fear out
Peeing and pooping outside the comfort zone—known as the diaper—is a huge and sometimes frightening concept for a child. Acting out potty scenes with dolls or stuffed animals can help toddlers work through anxieties and fears and provide an opportunity to develop a sense of mastery over their feelings of uncertainty.Parents can assume the role of one of the dolls and articulate what the child may feel: ‘I don’t want to make poop on the potty, the potty is too noisy!’ Then, the child can assume the role of supporter.”
Reward charts, stickers, treats or trips to the park – some kids just respond better to celebrations. See what’s most effective for your child, and keep it consistent so that they know a successful trip to the potty equals good times ahead. Above all, reinforce their effort with lots of praise. When the inevitable accident happens, try to keep things positive instead
Keep clothing simple
You literally have seconds between nature call and dash to the loo. So keep the clothing simple and fuss-free. Million Fruit buttons and Tie Up Bow look cute on the outside but can be hell when you have three seconds between you and poop!Opt instead for some good old track pants, or loose dresses and skirts initially.
Invest in Toilet Training Pants
While day time training will soon seem achievable, night time and nap time training can take months and sometimes years. Stock up on supply of disposable training pants, and invest in a really good waterproof mattress protector or specially designed waterproof bed linen and
Ditch the diapers
By the time your toddler’s ready to say goodbye to diapers altogether, they’ve accomplished a lot.
Acknowledge this and reinforce your toddler’s pride in their achievement by letting them give away leftover diapers to a family with younger kids or take them along when you plan to donate them. Or you may want to join them in a joyful jig around the house and call it the “no more diapers” dance.
But above all else, patience, patience, patience is the key!
How are you finding the toilet training? Share your tips in the comments below?