How To potty train your toddler?
- by Shruti Gokarn
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The simple things you do every day as adults, such as eating, or walking, or visiting the washroom are huge steps for toddlers and the mastery of each of these markers of daily routine is an accomplishment, both physical and psychological. Potty training seems to be the most demanding of these skills for parents as well as children. So, here’s a little something to help you along in this very important process of childhood.
There are two aspects to toilet training- the first is the timing and the second is the process.
Training for the day
Let’s talk about the timing first. First of all, remember that different children will be ready for this at different ages. So, don’t compare your child to others. So, when should you initiate toilet training? You can start as early as six months to train your toddler for urination. At regular intervals during the day hold your baby over the pot. Initially this may not show results, but keep at it and your child will associate the pot with urination.
As far as defecation goes, you can initiate the training anywhere between eighteen to thirty months, depending upon the appearance of other developmental milestones. If your child can walk, remove their underwear, communicate clearly, then it’s time. Start by putting away the diapers during the day and replacing them with underwear. I know what you are thinking -it’s an invitation to a whole load of mess. That’s bound to happen. So, the first tenet of potty training your toddler is patience.
Teach your child the words that they need to use to tell you that they want to urinate or defecate. Initially, they may not be able to tell you or even if they do they may not reach the toilet on time. This would be a good time to remind yourself that this is a psychological barrier which has to be overcome so it is very bad idea to scold your child for wetting their pants.
To help them along you can get a smaller toilet seat which can fit on to your regular toilet. Consistency is the key here. If you insist that they go to the washroom instead of using diapers, habits will set in.
Training for night
This leaves the night. Once they are trained to use the washroom during the day, tackle the night. To begin with, insist they that use the washroom before going to bed. Secondly, remove the dependence on the diaper. Be prepared for bedwetting and lay out a rubber sheet below a thick bedsheet. You may have to wake up and change the underwear a few times at night, but then we always knew parenting is not a cakewalk.
These are just a few tips. Different things work for different children. Figure out what works best for you. After all no one knows your child better than you do.