Ten ways to make potty training easy
By: Bernice Maune
It’s an exciting time as your toddler moves away from diapers to becoming more independent as potty training begins. It doesn’t have to be a fight nor a frightful experience for your child, you can make this transition fun and with less fuss by using a combination of methods to train them.
Timing is everything
Take your time as you begin the process. Don’t rush your child or compare his growth to that of other toddlers who may have already mastered using their potty. Instead get rid of timelines and rather monitor your child’s individual growth by watching how he reacts when you mention the potty and what he does when you lay it infront of him.
Communication is key
Talk to your child about the potty and introduce it in a fun way. Make a song and dance about the potty so your toddler doesn’t view it as a menacing object.
Name the potty
Give the potty a name so that your child can bond with his potty. Calling it by name also makes it seem like it is a personable object which he can look forward to using.
Watch videos of other kids using a potty
A visual experience of seeing other kids using a potty will instil a sense of curiosity in your baby’s mind. She will want to find out how to use the potty once she sees others using it as well.
Keep a potty in all the bathrooms
Practise makes perfect, your kid will get used to seeing a potty in each bathroom and practise sitting on it.
Make a big deal of the potty
When your child uses the potty, clap or laugh to show that they have done something good. They will begin associating positive expressions with the potty which will urge them to use it more often.
Establish routine around training
Pick a time when you show your toddler the potty so that they can begin to look forward to those moments. Make it a fun time by rewarding your toddler with a treat each time.
Be open to accidents
Don’t punish your child when they have made an accident. Patience is key as you are both finding a routine around training.
Give your child space with the potty
If your toddler wants to wander off alone to explore the potty, keep an eye but don’t be too present. Watch from a distance so that your toddler is safe but still allow him to feel a sense of trust and responsibility for his potty.
If there are older siblings in the house, get them to help by showing your toddler how to sit on the potty so that they do not feel like they are the only ones who need training. Some toddlers may wonder why everyone else uses the toilet and they don’t. Including the family will put your child’s mind at ease during what may be a confusing time.
Tip: The American Association of Pediatricians states that potty training is the time in a child’s life when they are most vulnerable to abuse.
“That’s because the punishment doesn’t work; it actually makes it more difficult for the child to control the accidents. The parent gets more frustrated, and the punishment escalates. The situation spirals out of control, and tragedies are more likely.
In short, punishing your child for potty accidents will NOT hasten potty learning. In fact, it will lengthen the process, and it will damage your relationship with your child. Just don’t do it.”
Watch this video on potty training with your toddler
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