Whether you are a hired child caregiver, a new mother or even an experienced one, you will agree with me that one of the most difficult stages in raising a child is the potty training. This article would show you how to potty train a little baby boy or girl.
Contrary to general opinion, the experience can be easy and even fun for you and the baby; you just need to exercise patience, learn the proper way to go about it and stay positive throughout the training period.
A common mistake caregivers make is the use of force; it usually gives the direct opposite of the expected result as it instills fear in the child who now dreads the potty and sees its use as a form of torture.
Avoid forcing a baby to start learning how to use the potty; they are naturally wired to start showing signs of interest in potty training as they grow.
Because starting at the right time is a crucial step in potty-training your child, I will help you know how to understand these signs before going further.
How To Know When A Baby Is Ready For Potty Training
Your baby is most likely to show signs of interest in toilet use around 18 to 24 months of age. At this stage in his young life, the child begins to give some gestures of independence. This is when you should start looking out for the signs mentioned below.
· Baby has started to walk and sit for short periods
· Baby frequently pulls off his pants
· Baby starts disliking the nappy and cries or tries to pull it off when it is wet
· Baby starts trying to imitate people doing housework
· Baby starts hiding to pee or poop
· Baby tries to let you know that his nappy is soiled
· The child’s nappy is less frequently soiled
· Baby makes the squatting position to pee or poop
· Baby likes to watch people go to the bathroom
Some children could take longer than 24 months to show these signs, so if you are caregiver to such a child, just be patient because children differ in readiness. Understanding your child’s timing goes a long way in determining potty training success.
You don’t have to wait till you see all the signs before starting to train your child. If he exhibits at least three of the aforementioned, just know he’s ready to use the potty and start his training.
Starting Potty Training For Baby: Training Gear
Starting the potty training
Now that the baby has shown you signs that he is ready to learn toilet use, I will show you the right steps to take for it to be successful and fun for both of you. That little cutie won’t be a baby forever and these moments with him won’t come twice, you might as well enjoy it.
For the sake of colour variety, portability and size, I recommend you use plastic potty to start training your baby, then gradually progress to the toilet. There are certain items you should have in place before the training can start, so you’ll have to go shopping for the ones listed here.
A Potty chair: the baby sits on the potty chair to defecate and pee. It is portable and comes in different colours, shapes and sizes. I recommend you buy pink for your female child and blue for your son.
Trainer pants: unlike diapers, this pant doesn’t lock a child’s wetness inside. It makes the baby understand wetness and discomfort, aiding potty training. Check out my guide on best potty training pants.
Urinal:if your baby is a boy, you’ll need to teach him how to pee like a man with the urinal.
Books:get good books that you can read to the child during potty training to make it more interesting. Click here for good potty training book
DVD:getting a cartoon video for your baby to watch during training can make it exiting for the child, interchanging between books and videos during training make it less stereotyped and more fun. Check DVD here
Now that you have the basic tools for potty training, we can get to work!
Proper Baby Potty Training
Start by teaching your baby the standard words to use when he wants to pee or poop, words like ‘the loo’, men’s room, and ladies room will suffice.
Show the potty chair to your child and explain to him/her what it is used for. Demonstrate to the baby how to sit on it and ask her to copy you.
If you are training a baby boy, show him a urinal and explain what it is used for, daddy’s help is useful here as he will need a demonstration.
By now the baby should know what to say when he wants to pee or poop and is aware of what to do about it. With this achievement, you can let go of the diapers and start wearing your child potty trainer pants. That wet feeling will remind him of the potty chair and urinal.
Pick a day to start the first practical training, I prefer a Saturday because you can stay home all day and monitor the baby’s progress.
Be sure to dress your child in clothes that are easy to remove, you can even leave him in the trainer pants if the weather is friendly enough. This reduces the stress of undressing to pee.
About 40 minutes after every meal, be sure to sit your baby on the potty chair because that’s when he is likely to have bowel movement.
If you notice baby’s gestures like sudden silence and discomfort, sit him on the potty chair, it is usually a sign that he wants to ease himself. If there are no signs, you can ask from time to time if he wants to sit on the potty.
Position the potty chair in front of a television. Play cartoon to make it less work for the child, but don’t make him sit too long, the potty is not furniture and five minutes should be enough.
As you employ this daily, your child will learn fast and eventually start doing it without your supervision.