Potty training is probably one of the most awaited milestones in both mother and her child's life. Like any other skill you teach your little one, it also requires a lot of time and patience on your part. Particularly when you have a stubborn toddler, potty training seems like a quite daunting task. To help you keep your sanity and sense of humor, here are a few tips to make the entire process a bit easier and smoother.
Introduce the Potty Early:
There is no perfect age to start potty training for a child. Some babies are ready as early as 18 months, while others become ready only after the age of three. However, the best time to start potty training is when your child is able to sit up and walk on his own without your support. Remember, the earlier you introduce potty to your little one, the less likely he will be afraid of potty training.
Pick a Good Time to Start:
Although you’re completely free to start potty training at any time but to potty train your little one quickly and successfully, it’s inevitable you choose the best time. Always try to start potty training when the weather is not too cold otherwise your wee one will feel uncomfortable sitting on the potty. Also, make sure you have enough time to constantly monitor your child during the potty-training process.
Look for Cues of Readiness:
Whether it's a funny face, a distinctive dance or pulling pants up and down, there are always signs that tell you if your little munchkin needs to go to the bathroom. Recognize these ‘I have to go’ signs and also make your child familiar with them. If possible, try to establish a verbal communication between you and your child so he could easily grab your attention and use the potty without any embarrassment.
Create a Routine:
The next crucial thing you need to do is getting your little cherub into a routine of using the potty seat. This could be done by encouraging your child to sit on the potty at certain times regardless of whether or not he needs to use it. As Children learn a new activity better when they have a regular daily routine, letting your toddler perform easier routines will definitely help him get used to the potty.
Explain the Process:
To make things easier, explain the entire process while your child is seated on the potty chair. Tell your little one clearly what you want him to do and why it is so necessary. In your spare time, you can also take advantage of a few picture books or videos to make your child familiar with the process of potty training. Moreover, keeping a poster or flipbook that illustrates the process of using the potty will also help your little one to understand the process.
Ditch the Diapers:
While you’re going to start potty training, be sure to make the diaper changing a bit tedious process for your child. Represent diaper changing as an ugly chore to your kid and tell him how uncomfortable wearing a dirty, wet diaper feels. Once you persuade your little one to ditch the diapers, he will think of the potty as an easier way to pee and poop. However, it’s highly advised not to force your toddler to stop wearing diapers immediately after you start potty training.
Set Aside Some Naked Time:
If possible, allow your little one to spend some time naked or in just a T-shirt. Let him wander around and encourage him to use the potty - as much as you can. As your toddler is not wearing a diaper or underwear, he will likely prefer to put his pee or poop in the potty seat or chair. After mastering naked-potty use, he will soon start using the potty in clothes.
Be Cool About Setbacks and Accidents:
No matter what potty-training method you use, accidents are bound to happen. If one does, do not punish, scold, or shame your little one. Instead, clean up quickly and tell your child that accidents and setbacks are just a part of the potty-training process. If accidents occur too frequent, put your child back in diapers and try again after a few weeks or months.
Teach Proper Hygiene:
While you’re potty training your child, it's important to teach him some basic hygiene tips to avoid the risk of infections and diseases. Instruct your toddler to always flush and wash his hands after using the potty. To encourage your little one to wash hands, you can buy him a sparkly or colorful kid-friendly soap. Also, make sure your toddler is washing his hands for long enough to kill harmful germs and bacteria.
Offer Praise and Rewards:
As a parent, you should always praise your child for his little achievements. The best way to motivate your little one to use the potty is making a huge deal out of every time he uses the potty successfully. It could be a chocolate button, an extra bedtime story, or even a surprise trip to the Local Park or Mall. Recognize what motivates your kid the most and reward him accordingly for his successes.
Nishant Gupta is the founder of WobblyWalk.com. He is 28-year old married young blogger who feels the difficulty of his wife as a mother and tries to ease other mothers’ lives with the help of his website and content.