Having a potty-trained child is a huge milestone with awesome parental perks! For starters, no more diaper changing. And just imagine what you can do with the money you save from diapers, the time you spend washing cloth ones, and the space you free up on your diaper bag!
Potty training can be tricky because you'll never how fast (or slow) your child will learn it. If you want your toddler to use the toilet, instruction needs to be consistent. Here are some key things to keep in mind:
#1 Make sure he's developmentally ready. What signs say he is ready? For many parents, potty training starts on the second birthday when his bowel movements are predictable. He is showing curiosity about the toilet. He might also start to prefer pull-ups or underwear and gets easily irritated with wet diapers. Potty training also depends on the child's ability to understand and follow instructions and communicate to you his needs. Observe your child for signs that he needs to pee or poo, so you can teach these to him, too.
#2 Do a walkthrough of the process. The demonstration is essential. Girls pull down their pants, sit on the toilet seat, pee or poo, and then wipes herself. Boys raise the toilet seat (if applicable), pull down their pants, stand in front of the toilet, and aim to pee in the bowl. Teach the kids also to flush the toilet and wash their hands after. Do this regularly for about two months. Vietnamese moms and Jennica Garcia Uytingco swear the whistling sound helps while the baby goes potty.
#3 Encourage and remind them to potty. You can read story books about potty training while praise and rewards motivate the little ones to use the potty. You should minimize distractions. Remind -- not ask -- them to potty, advises mom-of-six Lora Jensen. Toddlers may not yet be fully aware of cues for when they need to pee or poo. Reminding them helps them learn about their body cues. Remember, kids also forget to potty when they're busy playing.
#4 Consistency is crucial key. Make sure all of you -- hubby, lolo, lola, yaya -- are on the same page when it comes to his potty training. Once you feel confident in your child's training, you can ditch the diapers and pull-ups altogether after two to three months. Think of it as an added motivation for your child. Some moms get rid of using nappies during the day first, and then, later on, at night, too. But once your start, there's no turning back -- that's why timing is crucial.
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#5 Potty use is not perfected overnight. Some toddlers get used to using the potty for a couple of months while others take up to six months or more. Get ready to handle accidents in a calm matter-of-factly manner. Don't get mad when he accidentally wets the bed; just ask him to help you clean up the mess. Let him also learn from his mistakes, and don't get mad when he wets the bed. Even if he is potty-trained for months, it can still happen.
On a last note, the above are guidelines -- there may be times (frustrating, for sure) when they won't work with your child. Patience is key, as moms who potty train their babies as early as nine weeks will tell you. Learn more about it here.