Heya Mamma, training a child to drop the diapers and embrace using the toilet or potty can be a huge task, but this is also an important life skill needed to gain independence.
The ability to use the toilet comes from understanding their body and the sensation that triggers or lets them know it’s time to go.
Dropping the diapers is a milestone every child will attain no matter the age but mamma, you will need a lot of patience and self-reminder that every child gets to their milestone at their own pace, and nothing is wrong with that. Try not to pressure yourself or the child; this will not bring you the desired result.
Now, there is no specific time to potty train a child. Some parents choose to start introducing as early as the 1st week of birth and others 2 or 3 years.
Some experts say parents should do it before the age of 2, especially for the boys, but whenever you choose to start, make sure the decision you make is what’s best for the child and not what’s best for you.
Do you feel your child is ready for the journey? Or have you attempted and lost hope because you do not see any changes?
Here are some tips that could help pave the way for you and your young one.
TIPS TO HELP PREP YOU FOR POTTY TRAINING
1. IS THE CHILD READY?
Your child can show signs of readiness, and you have to be able to identify them. Potty training can be more effective when the child is taking the lead.
They are changing fewer diapers, regular bowel movements, children pulling off diapers or going to a corner whenever they have bowel movements.
2. INTRODUCE THEM TO THE IDEA AND GET THEM MOTIVATED.
Kids are often excited to try new things because they are in their explorative state.
Getting your child acquainted with the toilet and its etiquette can be a great way to start. Use the most effective way to get the message across to them. It could be songs, the actual objects, i.e. the toilet or potty.
The switch for some kids comes from them observing you or an older kid using it. Watch the child and identify which they prefer (potty or toilet).
3. PICKING THE RIGHT UNDERPANTS AND POTTY.
If you decide to start with the potty, be sure to get one appropriate for the child. It’s better to let the child pick their potty; know that this doesn’t work for every child.
For example, some might decide it’s a toy if it’s too colourful, while colours may appeal more to another class and work better for them.
Underpants are essential once you start, so they understand it is the new norm as they move on; their favourite cartoon character pants can be an added advantage.
For some kids, it can be confusing switching between diapers and pants. Some parents decide to go fully in with pants and figure it as they move along, while others prefer to eliminate diapers in stages.
4. SET YOUR INTRODUCTION PERIOD.
One effective way to get kids to accept the potty is staying consistent, so you need to be prepared to go all the way before initiating your plan.
It might be good to start when you are available for a certain number of days or weeks. Having a dedicated period for this can help solidify the process.
5. CREATE A ROUTINE.
Having a potty routine helps the child adapt easily and gives excellent acceptance results. You can do this by having potty time once the child wakes up or timing how frequently the child uses the potty.
You should also share your planned routine with your spouse, other caregivers and teachers ( if they are in school already); this will help everyone stay on course and help the consistency.
6. CHOOSE A LOCATION.
Keeping the potty in close range can help the child when introducing the potty.
If your child feels intimidated by the toilet and you have chosen to go with a potty, place the potty nearby or an area in which they can reach it easily or spend the most time.
It could be their play area, their rooms or the sitting room. This is just for a season.
7. PRAISES AND REWARDS.
Praises and rewards can help the process of potty training.
A school of thought says that parents should not use rewards because it is a life skill, and you don’t need tips to learn what you need to survive, but praises are welcome.
Another says rewards can be as effective as praises, and you can do both.
Choose the one that best suits your parenting skills. Don’t use rewards if that’s not what has worked for you in other training aspects because you feel it’s the easy way out; it quickly just might take you longer.
It’s important to celebrate the wins of your child, no matter how little.
8. EXPECT ACCIDENTS.
Remember each child hits a milestone at their pace? Some kids will get there within a short time, and some others might take some time.
Accidents are bound to happen as they try to adjust; it will be good to have this in mind, so you don’t give up in the face of this.
Potty training is a milestone that your child will eventually hit, don’t be pressured and don’t pressure the child.
No one method works for all children and so you might want to try different approaches for your other kids.
It could also help if you communicate with the child, children understand what you are saying, and communication should not be overlooked.
Mama, you got this, and you will get through this phase.
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