The thought of potty training tends to fill most parents with dread, however potty training doesn’t have to be a chore, in fact it should be celebrated.
Your little one has now reached another major milestone and most importantly, you’ll soon be nappy free.To help prepare you for potty training, Kathryn Mewes has shared her Top Tips to help you feel ready to take that next big step with your little one.
IS YOUR CHILD READY?
Oh how we all want the day to arrive when our little ones are ‘nappy free’ and they can take themselves off to the toilet on their own. But before YOU decide that it is time for them to wear underwear please STOP and realise that this is a stage in their development that THEY are in charge of!
I am always asked ‘At what age should I potty train my child?’ The answer is not that simple. Some children are as young as 2.5 and others can be 3.5. The important thing is that they are emotionally and physically ready. Your child needs to have good bladder control before they start to potty train. This means that they only urinate every 2.5 – 3 hours. Put your hand down your child’s nappy several times in the first 3 hours of the day. If the nappy is dry for a minimum of 2.5 hours this is a great start.
Signs that your child is ready to Potty Train.
- They stop during play and stare into space when they are having a wee.
- They find a private place in the house and squat for a bowel movement.
- They let you know when they have done a poo and want to be changed.
- They can say when they are doing a wee.
- They take note of you on the toilet.
- They take off their own nappy at bath time and show signs they want to sit on the toilet / potty.
- They are trying to take off their nappy more and more.
- If you can look at the list and confidently say your child is doing 5 out of 7 of the above he could be ready!
DAY ONE OF POTTY TRAINING
Start by going ‘bare bum’ and explain that when your child feels a wee or poo coming they must let it come out. Try and get to the potty but if it goes on the floor at first it doesn’t matter. The first step is for your child to feel the urine and stool ‘leaving’ their body. This can be a fear so you must be relaxed if the mess hits the floor. Once they know the ‘leaving feeling’ promote the potty. The more realistic the potty the better, ready for the transition to the loo.
The key is to remain relaxed and leave it up to them. Don’t continually ask them if they need the potty. They will never think for themselves and read their body well if you are doing that for them.
Not quite there yet!
If you are still mopping up after day 3 STOP. Back to nappies and start again in a couple of months.
- Don’t continually ask them if they need to use the potty 99% of the time they will say ‘No’!
- Be relaxed about accidents. Don’t ask them why they didn’t get to the potty. The chances are they don’t know. It just happened.
- Give them plenty of liquids to allow plenty of practice.
- Make it clear to them where the potty is.
- Keep it in one PRIVATE place.
- If accidents are continual. Return to nappies and try later.
They all get there in the end! No need for pressure. Potty training is a very sensitive time for a child. A time when they have full control.
Written by Kathryn Mewes: Author of ‘The Three Day Nanny’, Star of C4 TV Show ‘The 3 Day Nanny’