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Getting Ready for Potty Training

Are you counting down days to the toilet switch? Perhaps you’re just starting to make a go of it after a few failures. You need to make sure your child is ready for toilet training. You can rest assured that they will become more confident in the future.
Carol Stevenson, a mom from Stevenson Ranch (California), says “No child will graduate highschool in diapers”. Each child was trained at a different time. “But it’s easy for parents to worry that their child is not yet at the right age. It adds stress and can become a battle.

When you feel your kid is ready to get rid of diapers, be sure to watch for signs such as a desire to go to the toilet, asking you to change them immediately after they pooped.

Timing for Potty Training

It’s okay to get frustrated if things take too long. According to a study conducted by the Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, potty training takes approximately one year. Dr. Maureen O’Brien is the director of parenting and child developmental at The First Years, Avon, Massachusetts. She is also author of Watch Me Grow. It is important that several areas of developmental need to be coordinated first. The child needs to communicate well and be aware of his bodily emotions. He also needs to understand how long it will take him to get there.

Practicing Patience

“When my daughter was about 26 months old, I started to go to the toilet every ten minutes. Even if we weren’t out. After a while, she was able and willing to go to the toilet on her own. Poop was a different story. I had the to force her to poop with M&Ms. –Elissa Murnick; Fairfield, Connecticut

“My son learned to use the toilet quickly, but it was difficult to get number two right. First, we had the task of watching for his cues. This was to help us determine if he was trying go to the poop. Then we had to bring him to our bathroom. It was a long wait, sometimes lasting more than an hour. So we began reading to him. The key is patience, patience. –Karen J. Wright; Mankato, Minnesota

A routine is important

Jen Singer is a mother of two. Jen is the author and member of the Huggies Pull-Ups Potty Training Partners. “The key to consistency” Jen says. “You need to do more than what you do at your home when you’re preparing for the potty. Talk to your daycare provider about letting your child bring a book to read on the potty. It is possible that daycare providers are too busy to cater to every child’s needs. Ask them how they believe they can support the success that you had at home. Next, bring something to daycare that works. You can get soap for your child at home if they like it.

Being Consistent

“I wish he could take credit for my training. But his amazing teachers at daycare put him to the test every 20 minutes. We did the same at home. I think he wanted to do the same thing as his classmates. –Roberta Perry. Phoenixville. Pennsylvania

“We discovered that our son wasn’t interested in remembering where he was going, so we bought the Potty Watch. Our son loved it. This wristwatch can play songs and light up at 30- or 60-minute intervals. It then resets itself to start the countdown. –Heather Ledeboer. Athol in Idaho

“When my son was 17-months-old, I began to have him use the potty while I bathed. After a few nights, he was able to manage the task. I maintained the same routine each evening. Slowly we added more trips to potty throughout each day. This worked with all three kids. Shannon; Stevensville MD

Earn Rewards

“Two words: Mini M&Ms!” Promise your child that every time she uses the potty, she will receive two or three. However, if she wipes her face (a difficult task for us), then she will receive four to five. This is huge because one reason kids don’t like potty training is that it can be messy. — Donna Johnson; Charlotte, North Carolina

“I highly recommend bribery when motivating potty training. A small, plastic piggy bank was kept in our bathroom. Every success was rewarded with one penny per pee and two for each poop. Our daughter was fascinated. She would shake the piggy and look up at how heavy it was. We then took her potty fortune and made quarters to use at the mall. –Lisa Spicer; Los Angeles, California

“Every time one of our toddlers used a potty, I embellished their outfits using stickers. The children showed their dad their rows (which looked like stars in an army general’s army) at the end. Their successes with potty training were praised twice, and I received an inexpensive and simple way to reward them. –Jen Singer; Kinnelon, New Jersey

“We tried Cheerios M&Ms M&Ms potty charts cheerleader rants screams, Cheerios, M&Ms, M&Ms, M&Ms, Cheerios, M&Ms’s, M&Ms, M&Ms, etcetera, but nothing worked. My son was always fascinated with cars and trucks, and the movie Cars had just been released. My husband searched every store to find the figurines. After seeing the movie, my husband and I told our son to go potty every time. It was incredible. He was completely potty trained after just 15 cars. Disney would be so proud. –Darlene Fiske; Austin, Texas

Praising Your Child

“I’ve heard all of the tips for potty training: stickers, bribing children with toys, special underpants. Picking the right reward is important to your parenting style. I had never used rewards elsewhere, so it was not something I wanted to do here. What did work was: A lot of undivided and constant attention, positive reinforcements, love, affection, pride, and love when my children were successful. “It is crucial to focus on small steps of improvement. — Diane Hund; Elmhurst, Illinois

“I didn’t use any extra stuff–no childdie toilets, potty rings and even pull-ups because the local YMCA where my girls attended didn’t believe that they were necessary. Even more, we were required to sign a contract agreeing to follow their toilet training guidelines at home. I was instructed to only put the children (age 2 1/2) on our regular toilet during the day, unless they were absolutely necessary. After a week of ‘Yeah! You were number two! Congratulations! You made a little wee-wee! They were finished with few mistakes. I would say they were not yet developmentally ready. –Sandra Gordon; Weston, Connecticut

How to choose a location

“The kiddie lids that sit on top the toilet are too intimidating for children to use. Children can find it difficult to get to the toilet on their own, so they need a stool. My 2-year-old daughter started with a mini Elmo Potty Seat, which I kept in our living room since it was her favorite place. We moved it closer to the toilet, eventually moving to a Dora-style seat. Tracy Burton; Grand Ledge Michigan

“To ease the pressure on our daughter, she had the potty placed right next to her mattress so she could have her space. This made it easier for her, especially when she was awake in the morning or at night. This worked for our second girl as well. “–Anne und Ben, Cheshire CT