When to start potty training?

(July 14, 2010)

When To Start Potty Training

While there are many who try to pin an exact time when a parent should begin potty training a child this is not really feasible. Each child is unique and develops differently and so while some children may be potty trained by the time they are 2, others may require a lot more time. Ideally, it is thought that potty training should begin when the child is about one and a half years old. This is a general timeframe and it is more important to keep a track of potty training signs that show that your child is ready to begin potty training.

One of the first signs of potty training is when your child begins to feel uncomfortable in soiled diapers and immediately asks for a change. You may also notice that your child stays dry for two to three hours and does not need a change of diapers. Your child may also start to make gestures of discomfort and when you check his/her diaper you find that it is dry and he/she soils it within a few minutes. This is a very important potty training sign as it shows that your child is trying to communicate discomfort and is able to understand that they are about to soil themselves. It also shows that your child does not wish to soil himself/herself and so potty training at this time would be most welcome. Make sure that you follow a feeding schedule as this helps to promote regular bowel movements. When you notice that your child is beginning to have regular bowel movements you can start potty training.   

Potty training should not be a strict activity wherein you use negative reinforcement; instead it should be a fun activity which involves plenty of positive reinforcement. To a small child, a regular sized toilet can seem very huge and scary. This may put them off potty training. Instead of forcing your child to use your toilet, you can shop for a small toddler sized one for him/her. You can also take your child shopping so that he/she can choose the potty of their choice as this will help to make the whole process of potty training much easier. You can also make a potty training chart and every time your child uses the potty correctly, you can place a colorful star shaped sticker on the chart. Children love to be appreciated and this will motivate them to use the potty as often as needed. Make sure that you do not take off a star if they are unable to use the potty in time as this is another form of negative reinforcement.   

Submitted by P T on July 14, 2010 at 03:55

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