How to Toilet Train Your Child

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After what can seem like endless diaper changes in the early years (not to mention endless diaper changing battles in the toddler years), it only makes sense that you’re ready to get rolling on toilet training your child. As it turns out, your toddler may likely be ready, too, showing signs of toilet training readiness, like an eagerness to sit on the toilet. Or, you child may not want to sit down and or be scared to and hold it in instead. All of these behaviors are within normal!

If your toddler seems to be on the cusp of hitting this milestone, make sure you have a strategy to help them succeed. This blog will share simple and helpful steps to follow for daytime and nighttime potty training. 

Steps to Follow for Day Time Potty Training

It’s best to first tackle daytime toilet training before moving to nighttime. During the day, you can communicate with and work directly with your child as they learn the expected behaviors around using the toilet. Making sure your child shows signs of readiness and carefully following a strategic plan will increase your likelihood of toilet training success

  1. Remove all diapers, pull-ups, etc., during the day
  2. Purchase underwear that is not particularly absorbent. It is preferable that the “accident” not be contained within their clothes. It is easier for the child to “EXPERIENCE” the accident if it leaks on the floor.
  3. NEVER ask the child if he has to go or take him to the toilet unless: a) It is before an outing, or b) He is visibly “dancing” or holding back
  4. Let the “accident” teach the child. Accidents allow the child to learn about how his body works. They are extremely valuable.
  5. Be positive about bowels and urine. No negativity about the smell or looks of urine or excrement. If you’ve made the mistake of negative talk, it may take some time to reorient the child to have a positive outline on BM and urine.


      What To Do When a Potty Training Accident Happens

      In any learning process, mistakes are inevitable. They are a valuable part of the process! When it comes to toilet training, the same is true. When your child has an accident, follow these tips: 

      1. Don’t panic, yell, scream, punish, deprive, take away privileges, insult, or complain as a result of the accident–this includes making negative facial expressions. Would you do that to someone who was vomiting?
      2. View the accident as a positive learning experience. Remember, there will be only a finite number of accidents until the lesson is learned.
      3. Each accident should be followed with the following conditioning: a) Child should be taken quickly (but pleasantly) to the toilet. b) Wet clothes should be removed and placed in the bathroom sink. c) Have the child sit on the toilet for two to three minutes, during which time you may pleasantly remind them that we relieve ourselves on the toilet. d) Child “rinses” out wet clothes with liquid soap, wrings them out and hangs them to dry in the shower or bathtub, or puts them in a bag on top of the washing machine. (Obviously, the garment is subsequently placed with dirty laundry)
      4. Clean clothes are acquired and donned.
      5. Episode is forgotten, no speeches, no stories, no “next time,” etc.
      6. And most importantly…STAY CALM!! Remember, no negative facial expressions even if you feel annoyed inside. 


        Steps to Follow for Night-Time Potty Training

        Once your child has mastered daytime toilet training, you can move to tackle the nighttime hours. As you approach this second milestone, we recommend a few pointers to make this process a quick success.

        1. Night-time training should not be attempted before age 3.
        2. Sometimes, a child will become trained at night spontaneously during the training process. This should not be expected but embraced if it does happen!
        3. DO NOT give the child a lot to drink before bed. This will increase their chances of a successful night!
        4. DO NOT wake the child to take them to the bathroom in the middle of the night (it weakens the bladder).
        5. Use of the “Wet No More” device seems to have success when attempted after 5-6 years of age.
        6. If the problem persists, clear the condition medically with your pediatrician or urologist.
        7. After three consecutive dry mornings, the child can wear underwear at night.
        8. If there are two wet mornings, go back to pull-ups.


        Proven Strategies for Families and Children

        Supporting and equipping your child to conquer different childhood milestones successfully is a challenging task–and not meant to be tackled alone. With an array of online resources and courses to choose from, in addition to online support, BLOOM offers more than just behavioral therapy to treat symptoms. BLOOM supports families and children everywhere by providing unique resources to meet you at your point of need–whether something as simple as daytime toilet training or something as complex as managing a child with ADHD.

        To learn more about what BLOOM has to offer, book a free 10-minute discovery call today.

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