Being able to use the potty is a very important skill for your little one to learn, and the best way to do it, is to introduce it to your little one slowly without forcing it. Every child is different and they learn in their own pace. Controlling the bladder is a skill that takes time to acquire and to master. They will eventually get there when their bodies are ready.
Always remind yourself that there is no designated time for a child to be potty trained. Never compare the development of your child to others. You as well as your child are doing the very best possible.
Many parents begin potty training their child around 2-3 year old. When you start noticing that your child is able to control the bladder, you can begin the potty training. Find a period of time where your child’s daily routine is not disrupted by eg. going on holidays abroad to being.
Signs that your child is able to control the bladder
If you see the following signs, the chance is that your child is starting to master the skill of bladder control!
1. They soil their nappies around once an hour.
2. When their nappies are soiled, they know and sometime they might even tell you about!
3. They voice out to you that they need to pee or they hide in a corner and fidget when they need to pee.
Positive reinforcement over negative reinforcement! It is important to give as much encouragement to your child as possible. Do not shout at your child if they make a mistake. This will only cause adverse effect on your child, since they will start associating “trying to wee in a potty” with negative thoughts and anxiety.
Consistency is the key! If possible, take the potty with you when you leave the house, so your child can consistently understand that peeing and pooing need to be done in a toilet (or a potty to begin with).
Place your child’s potty in your bathroom, in an easily accessible space. It is key to let your child know that sitting on the potty is part of everyday life, and it is normal. Usually taking your child to the potty after a meal is a good place to start. Simply invite your child to sit on the potty and see what happens. Bring them a book, or origami paper to play with.
Try to make a note of when your child does a poo every day. If it begins to be regular, try having their nappy off during those times and start encouraging them to use the potty. However remember that if they are uncomfortable with it, give them their nappy back. It is a balancing exercise between encouraging them to use the potty and giving them enough space to develop on their own.
Always potty train your child in the day time first before trying it in the night time. Potty training in the night time can be difficult, and expect there to be slip-ups. Do not blame your child for it, since it is 100% out of their control. To help your child get the hang of it, encourage your child to use the potty right before they go to bed, and have waterproof bedsheets underneath their normal bedsheets to make cleaning up more manageable.
Good luck parents!