5 Steps to Take Before You Start Potty Training
Potty training is a significant milestone in your toddler's life, and it requires careful preparation to ensure a smooth transition from nappies to using the toilet. Before diving into the potty training process, it's essential to take a few important steps to set both you and your child up for success. In this article, we'll discuss five crucial steps you should consider before embarking on the potty training journey.
1. Assess Your Child's Readiness
Potty training is most successful when your child is physically and emotionally ready. Look for signs such as:
Physical readiness: Can your child stay dry for longer periods, indicating better bladder control? Are they showing interest in the bathroom and imitating bathroom habits?
Emotional readiness: Is your child willing to cooperate and follow simple instructions? Are they showing signs of discomfort with dirty nappies e.g. stopping in their tracks?
Take time to assess your child's readiness, as starting too early can lead to frustration for both of you.
2. Gather Potty Training Supplies
Before you start potty training, make sure you have all the necessary supplies ready:
Potty or Trainer Seat: Decide whether you'll use a potty or a trainer seat that fits onto your toilet. Every child is different, but we recommend having both just incase, the seat will come in handy later on anyway!
Training pants: Consider whether you want to transition directly from nappies to regular underwear or use training pants. Our training pants can help catch small accidents when you are caught a little short. Our expert, Amanda, doesn't recommend using pull-ups, as these can be hard for your little one to differentiate from nappies.
Cleaning supplies: Stock up on cleaning products for accidents and sanitary wipes for your child's hands.
Having these items on hand will help you respond quickly during the training process.
3. Create a Potty Training Plan
A well-thought-out plan can make the potty training process smoother. Decide on the following:
Timing: Choose a time when you and your child can focus on potty training without major disruptions or stress e.g. moving house, new school, sibling incoming!
Method: Research different potty training methods (e.g., child-led, rewards-based) and choose the one that aligns with your parenting style and your child's temperament.
Consistency: Establish a consistent routine for bathroom breaks and stick to it as closely as possible.
Having a plan in place will provide structure and clarity for both you and your child.
4. Communicate with Your Child
Open communication is key to successful potty training. Talk to your child about the process and use positive language:
Explain the purpose: Help your child understand why we use the potty instead of nappies. Use age-appropriate language.
Encourage independence: Teach your child how to undress, sit on the potty, and wash their hands. Encourage them to communicate when they need to go. This will help massively when they start school!
Celebrate small wins: Praise your child for their efforts and accomplishments, no matter how small.
5. Prepare for Accidents and Be Patient
Accidents are a natural part of the potty training process. Before you start, mentally prepare yourself for these setbacks and avoid getting frustrated with your child. Instead:
Stay patient: Understand that accidents will happen, and it's part of the learning curve.
Stay positive: Encourage your child, even when they have accidents. Reassure them that it's okay and that they'll get better with time.
Stay consistent: Stick to your plan, even in the face of accidents, to maintain a routine and reinforce good habits.
Taking these five steps before starting potty training will set a solid foundation for success. Remember that every child is unique, and the journey may have its ups and downs. Stay patient, stay positive, and celebrate each milestone, no matter how small. With time and persistence, your child will master the art of using the potty.
Happy potty training!