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Learning to use the potty is a huge milestone in a child’s life and it indicates that he has finally gained complete control over his bodily functions. Let the training process be easy on you, and help your child by following these 10 handy tips on potty training.
New parents are thrilled at every milestone that their baby reaches, starting with their child’s first smile, to their independent walking. Being completely potty-trained is a special milestone, especially since the bowels and bladders are the last muscles a child gains control over, and because it frees the parents from the world of diapers!!
If you and your child are ready to start, here is a quick and easy guide to potty training:
1. Ensure your Child’s Readiness
Of course you’re ready to start potty training, but is your child ready as well? What is the right time to start training? Most kids are ready by two years, but many don’t start till they’re nearly three years of age. Can your child go without urinating for a few hours? Is your child interested in going to potty like a ‘big girl/boy’? Is she tired of diapers? Can she pull her pants up and down by herself? All these are good indicators that your child is ready to be potty-trained.
2. Get Appropriate Clothes
Potty training is tricky enough without having to deal with clothes that have complicated buttons or fastenings. Get your child clothes and under-wears with elastic waistbands, so that they can be pulled up and down easily. You can also get training underpants for your child’s initial stages of potty training.
3. Get the Right Potty Seat
For a young child, a small potty chair may be ideal. If your child seems interested in the adult toilet, you can get her an external toilet seat that can be fixed on top of the adult seat. These will be more easy to clean since all the potty goes straight into the toilet. Once he starts using it regularly, keep a small stool so that your child can climb up alone.
4. Read Potty Training Books
Not for you, for your child – get her books about kids starting to potty train. Pictures of real children will motivate her more than illustrations, but if you can manage to find a potty training book featuring her favourite cartoon character, she’ll be delighted!
5. Make your Home Potty Safe
Make the environment right for potty training. Keep bathrooms well lit and smelling nice, so it doesn’t put your child off. You might want to put away expensive rugs, and think about getting some covers for your sofa. The more relaxed you are, the better it is for your child. Always keep clean-up materials ready at hand while training your child.
6. Don’t Rush It
Potty training is a long process and it varies from a child to child. Rushing it will not help anyone, and it can backfire on your child, and take him two steps behind. Be prepared to take it slow and expect accidents.
7. Deal with Accidents
Speaking of accidents, they are inevitable during potty training. Controlling his bladder or bowels till he reaches the potty, pulling down his pants and then sitting on the potty – there are several complex muscles involved here. Don’t get stressed and calm your child too, who might feel anxious at having disappointed you. Never yell or shame him; just clean up the mess calmly and offer lots of encouragement.
8. Take Extra Care While Travelling
If you have to travel while your child is in the midst of potty training, it’s a good idea to keep the process going, even if you have to take extra precautions. If he’s wearing a diaper, try taking him to the toilet at regular intervals so that you don’t have to start all over again when you get back home. See if you can carry a portable potty with you.
9. Night Training takes Longer
While most kids achieve day time training soon enough, being completely dry at night can take another year. You can help by monitoring his fluid intake after 6 pm, and ensuring that he visits the bathroom just before bed. The rainy season usually delays the process.
10. Communicate with Teachers
Having one potty system at home and another at school might confuse the child, so talk to his pre-school teacher as soon as you start potty training. Most playschools encourage potty training by giving their kids regular bathroom breaks and teachers are usually trained to handle accidents.
Sometimes things can get really frustrating, and you might wonder if your child will ever learn to use the potty by himself. But it’s natural to feel this way, just remember that pretty much every kid ends up potty trained at some time or the other! Stay calm and use our potty training guide for a smooth learning process for your child and yourself – both of you will be proud when your child finally succeeds!!