Potty training

There are so many do’s and don’ts that we get told about potty training our little ones, but the most important thing is consistency and timing.

The right time

Potty training can be a daunting thing to think about as a mom, but is a milestone every child in time will reach. Make this time a fun and rewarding time. Don’t listen too much to others and take what works for you and your child. In this article I’ll tell what worked best for me and mabey a few tips that might help you and your precious one along.

Boys and girls are very different in every way and in potty training it’s evident. With my son I can’t take any credit his school was amazing and made it much easier for mom. Monkey see monkey do.

In groups it works much better. Firstly understanding the signs are important. Some are earlier than others. It’s important to recognize the signs and to work with your child. Often children will start to alienate themselves when having a number 2, or bed down ready to push, when you’ve spotted these signs start by making your child aware that something down there is about to happen and now it’s potty time. Regression can happen to so it’s important to realize that a child is never fully potty trained until they are much older as the occasional mishaps will still happen and they shouldn’t be penalized for that.

Number 1.

A child must be able to communicate. Often or not a mom will say to me I think my little one is ready but they can not communicate. It’s important they are able to verbalize that something down there is happening. This I would say is the first sign or even a child feeling uncomfortable when the business is done and wanting to rip off their nappy a big sign that this milestone is in reach.

Start with baby steps. A potty worked wonders in our home although I know lots of mommies who preferred the steps and special toilet seat. Whatever method you will be using stick to it.

A child must have must be able to feel and understand the warning signs which takes a lot of time but if done properly it can be over within a week. I honestly wouldn’t start under the age of 2.

I found this the perfect age for my daughter and my son was a little older.

Number 2

Make sure you dress your little one in easy off and easy on panties and clothes. If they are still battling with the skill to pull up and down their pants mabey wait before expecting more from them and get this trick right first.

The 5 min trips

So to start we bought awesome panties/undies and adorable potty. Obviously every time we we went we would explain the action so they were familiar.

We literally spent the week in doors at home. I started by taking my little one every 5 mins sometimes she would go and sometimes not. There were accidents in between which were just as important for the process as this is where I could explain what being wet felt like and before this what the little feeling/tickle she had was what she needed to be aware of and then go.

If you are battling with number 2 let your little one know there is no time frame when going. Give them a fun book to page through or sit with them engaging in conversation. Often before a number 2 arrives there are warning signs, make them aware of these signs and that when they appear they should try sit on the potty and go.

Cold turkey is best

No nappies and no pull ups work best. This is so the child does not get confused. Going number 1 or 2 is the same sensation and we shouldn’t get them used to making a number 2 in a pull up and going number 1 in the toilet. This is when bad habits forms which later are really hard to change. If taught from the beginning the same solution for both is the potty or toilet it should work. Being inconsistent is where we make mistakes. Yes it’s hard, yes it’s time consuming but once done is awesome.

So we would do the 5 min intervals and on about day 3 my little one would start saying I need to go. Sometimes they did sometimes they didn’t but we never put a nappy back on. We concentrated on the day time before we tackled night as this is another milestone in itself.

If your little one is going to school inform the school that you are potty training at home and the same thing should be continued at school. Pack lots of undies and bottoms and expect that there will be accidents. When children are pre occupied no matter how long they’ve been potty training accidents are inevitable. Plea with the school to keep up the toilet trips on their side and insist on no nappy.

Warm weather is best

Warmer weather is always better for training. The warmer the easier changing of clothing is as well as the will to go to the toilet. I advise only starting potty training in the spring at an age appropriate time.

Don’t blame yourself

Once my little girl had gotten on the potty training wagon and I felt I was in the clear I thought great all is done and dusted. It’s easy for children to hit a regression no matter what the reason. My little girl did. Thinking to myself was it something I’ve done? Is it something at school? Why oh why is she now having accidents after being potty trained for a number of months. I really felt like a failure. When I accepted that these things do happen and to get my daughter into good habits I.e: going to the loo before nap time, before leaving in the morning, before leaving school or before leaving the house it really got better . Ask often when you out and about if they need to go. Be on the lookout for the toilet warning signs. There is no set age at which a child should be potty trained but if you are worried about your child’s progression it’s always better to chat to your paed. Boys find it easier to train with number one quicker than girls as often it’s not frowned upon when little boys go in the garden ect. But with little girls that’s not always the case and making it to the bathroom in time sometimes doesn’t always happen. Once my daughter was in the midst of her training for day she one night ripped off her night nappy and decided herself she will not wear a nappy for nighttime. This was when I took extra care to make sure before bed toilet trips happened.

Nighttime training

It’s always important to stop liquids considerably before bedtime

Try make sure your little one has a big wee before sleep time.

In some cases parents wake their sleeping children before they go to bed to have another wee. I never took this route as if they had woken up completely getting back to sleep might be a mission or wanting water ect might be in the cards, whereas this method worked awesome for others so again whatever suits you, stay consistent.

I tried to get my children to make sure they went before bed emptied their bladder and often more than not it lasted the night.

After a couple of years their bladders have grown stronger and are able to go longer hours without needing to go. Although an empty bladder makes for a good nights sleep.

There are children who are able from an early age to awake when they need to go and go and are able to fall back asleep easily. I’m not that lucky with either of my two so I went the route of making sure their bladders were as empty as can be before sleep. As they’ve grown older they are now able to wake up and go by themselves. There have been many accidents in the past so I just took precautions and put mattress protectors on each bed which would make these accident mornings much easier.

In no time though this is another phase passed and another milestone reached.

Sit first

Boys unfortunately have the hard task of learning how to do a number one and a number two. Some moms prefer to teach them to sit for both as this is what is needed if he’s learning on the potty and at a later stage when they have the hang of both to teach them to stand to wee and to sit for a number two. Especially since there are not many small toilets around when going out or to friends home, teaching your little man to sit first is the best bet.

Form good hygienic habits

If a child is shown from the beginning how to do something correctly it shall remain. Teach your children to clean the seat before using, when boys are standing to lift the seat, to wipe correctly for either a one or two, encourage them to ask for help when they have gone to the toilet and may need assistance, flush after and most importantly to wash their hands correctly after every trip to the bathroom.

Praise praise praise

Once your little one has got the idea praise for every triumph and support when they have had an accident. Do not make them feel bad for the accident and explain these things happen from time to time and we need to be aware when playing ect to go to the toilet.

When they have done well keep them on a high with praise.

What’s more rewarding than seeing your parents praise you? This only motivates the child to want to go to the toilet. If this motivation is ruined it could take a long time for a child to get back on the wagon again.

If accidents are happening more often than not realize mabey your little on may not be ready and take a break. If your child will want to continue it’s important we try and try again supporting them no matter what.


Support your little ones with this new step to becoming even more independent. Embrace this milestone as it’s probably the biggest aside from walking and talking. Enjoy this messy, learning time with your toddler. Once all is achieved you can say goodbye to nappies for good. Yay !!!

Good luck mommies and enjoy !!

Warm wishes xxxx

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