When to start potty training...

Usually between 2-3 years old

How will I know if the time is right?

You observe their cues and signs
*do they have body awareness?
*do they like to be clean?
*are they capable of using the bathroom independently?
*are they expressing interest?
*timing is EVERYTHING!

It's sort of trial by fire...
You may try for a few days and then your child looses interest
This means they aren't quite ready.
You can try again at another time!

Good Ideas...

Have your toddler watch you use the toilet
Introduce this idea early but slowly...
Let them sit on toilet fully clothed so they can see it's harmless

What's the difference between a potty SEAT and a potty CHAIR?

The above is a potty CHAIR

*can be big/bulky
*child size
*practice going while an adult goes
*child can independently potty
*you dump out waste and clean between uses
*creates a "transitional period" for toddler to get used to going on the toilet

The above is a potty SEAT

*no "transitional period"
*no clean up necessary--only flushing
*can't be independent as usually the toilet is too high for them to reach without help (or at least a step stool)
*child needs the step stool to be able to plant their feet on something (makes it easier to go)
*for adult use--seat must be removed

Consistency is key!

*Sometimes kids go--sometimes they do not
*If they aren't ready--you'll know (or there will be accidents)
Read your child--that is your best cue

I'll just have my child wear underwear...that will work!

Sometimes! But not always!

Good to try if...
*You're at home and will be for several days
*You will consistently get your child to the potty about every 20-40 minutes (frequency varies)

What about Sticker Charts ?

*Really good idea
*Provides an incentive to kids
*Allows them to "see" their progress
*Some parents like to tie it to a bigger reward like a toy or candy
*Don't forget other incentives like high-fives, hugs, kisses, etc.

*Bribing your kids can work too. Just be sure you offer something reasonable and that you are willing to give them.

How is potty training at bedtime different?

*Potty training at night is very difficult for some toddlers
*Get into a nighttime routine that can include:
-limiting liquids
-going pee before bed
-put on a pull up
-waking to go pee mid-sleep

"#2" Training can be difficult too..

*Child has to recognize what it feels like when they have to "go"
*Some toddlers FEAR pooping in a toilet. Just have to work through it.

Potty Training in Public

*eventually you have to leave home and give it a try
*maybe wear pull-ups...just in case...
*be sure to visit the restroom A LOT
*you might invest in potty covers (see above) to help keep your child clean

Teaching boys to use a urinal...

*have his daddy show him how ("just like daddy does it!")
*use a step stool
*treat it like "target practice"


They happen!
-Be prepared--but often accidents really help toddlers learn to be potty trained.
-Do not punish for accidents! Ever!