Going Potty - tips for potty training
Daunted by the thoughts of potty-training your child? Parenting expert and ‘supernanny’ Teresa Boardman gives her tips, plus we have a round-up of great toilet-training products on the market
Toilet training should only be introduced when your child is ready.
Some of your child’s peers may be already using the toilet, but this process should not be rushed as every child is different. Most toilet training problems are caused by starting too early, unrealistic expectations and incorrect advice.
Ask yourself the following questions:
? Is my toddler emotionally ready for toilet training/potty training?
? Has my toddler got the words to say they need to use the potty or toilet? Do they understand the difference between wet and dirty?
? Are they staying dry for about 2.5 hours in their nappies?
Introduce the potty when your toddler shows an interest in the bathroom, ie when they ask how the toilet fl ushes or they want to wash their hands. A few weeks before starting the training talk to your child, read books about toilet training and get him to sit on the potty or toilet before bath time. Stay positive, be consistent and be patient as there will be accidents. Praise and rewards can help your toddler feel more comfortable learning their new skill.
Other important aspects to take into consideration are:
? Making sure everyone in your child’s life, ie grandparents, staff in the crèche, childminder or nanny are all aware of your child’s new potty/toilet training skills.
? Making a decision early about the products you will use to be successful ie potty/ toilet pants/pull-ups, stickers, charts or a small gift.
? If you are using a potty leave it in one place, do not move it around. Toddlers like privacy just like adults.
? When successful on the potty celebrate with lots of clapping hands and telling your toddler how good they are, going over the top with praise.
Up to the age of 18 months a child has no proper bowel or bladder control. Therefore it is from this age onwards that toilet training should be considered. However from the age of two years onwards is a more realistic time to start.
Most parents prefer to start their toddler on the potty. However, over the years, I have met a number of independent toddlers who wish to use the toilet like adults.
Teresa Boardman can be contacted at www.parentingsolutions.ie