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Potty Training Awareness Month is June...Who Knew?

June 13, 2016 3 min read

I don't know who is responsible for delegating June as Potty Training Awareness Month. I guess there are days or months designated for about any topic you can think why not Potty Training.

Every child and their family does undergo this developmental milestone so maybe its better than Secretary's Day or National Beer Drinker's Day, which only affect a portion of the population.

If your child is between 2 and 3 years old, you may be thinking in terms of potty training.

Here are some tips that I have learned over the years.

Wait until your child is ready. 

This can't be emphasized enough. Just because the pre-school won't admit him or you don't want two children in diapers at once, if you child isn't ready; no amount of coercion will work. 

Some signs of readiness include being bothered by a messy diaper, beginning to mimic other's actions, being interested in watching others use the bathroom and beginning to dress herself.

Find a cooperative stage, where he or she is willing to try new things, can play alone for 5 minutes or longer, and can signal (verbally or non-verbally) when she wants to go potty.

Body cues that may indicate readiness are: urinates a large amount at once, has regular formed bowel movements, can stay dry for two hours, hides or makes facial expression when needing to go potty, and ability to pull clothes up and down. 

If you start the process and realize that you did not pick a good time, it is alright to take a step back and restart it at a later time.

Make a plan and take it slow. 

Build a potty vocabulary to describe the body parts and functions. Let him or her watch you toilet and describe what happens.

Explain the steps.

The steps should include getting clothes off, sitting on the potty, wiping, flushing (or emptying potty) and washing hands.

Buy your essentials ahead of time. These include a potty chair or seat, training pants, potty books, (for parents and for child), and easy to access clothing.

Start on the week-end or vacation if things are less hectic. Be able to focus on hourly toileting reminders and be prepared to sit in the bathroom and do leisurely activities like reading or playing a game.

Dress in easy-to-remove clothes or allow him or her to go without bottoms if it is warm enough.

Develop a strategy for being out of the house. Travel potties can help for urgent or ill-timed needs.

Have babysitters, grandparents and friends carry through with your plan as much as possible.

Offer exuberant praise and be flexible. 

Give praise and stick with upbeat phrases. 

Sticker charts that reward behaviors in addition to actually urinating are helpful. Milestones such as telling parents they need to go, sitting on potty, wiping, washing hands and pulling down pants can be rewarded with a sticker or profusely praised.

Make it as game-like as possible. Little trinkets can be used to make her smile and feel successful.

Reinforce little successes. It may take time for your child to connect sitting on the potty with urinating in the potty.

Know that accidents will happen. Be casual and not over-concerned. "Oh, I guess you forgot to use the potty. I bet you'll remember next time.

Nighttime dryness can follow daytime dryness a year or two.

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