Potty training is an essential part of the growing process. It’s never easy, and there are always bumps along the way. Parenting is never a one size fits all situation, and every child is a little different. With that said, there are some constants when it comes to potty training.
Hopefully, you’ll be able to put these tips to good use. Always remember that there’s no such thing as a perfect parent. It’s a learning process that takes time to perfect. Those who have raised more than one child know just how true these words are.
Essential Potty Training Tips for Children
1. A floor potty may be less scary
Not all children are ready for the big potty. There is nothing wrong with gradually working your way up to the toilet. A floor potty may require a little more cleaning, but it’s the step you’re going to have to take to get your child to the point where they feel comfortable sitting on the toilet. A full-size toilet may seem very scary to a child in the beginning. The toilet is big, and it makes a lot of noise. All of those sounds can be frightening to a child. If your child is scared, then they are less likely to use the potty.
The early days of potty training are the most difficult. The entire process is new to your child. The toilet can seem like a big noisy machine that’s very scary. You should also put the potty in a part of your home where they feel comfortable. Putting it there will make your child feel more at ease when it’s time to go. Don’t worry if it’s in an odd place of the house. Your child isn’t going to be potty training forever.
2. Allow your child to explore the potty
We, adults, have a terrible view of the potty from the getgo. Adults think it’s dirty and nasty. A child can’t think about that right away. Instead, there’s this new and exciting piece of equipment in front of them. There’s nothing wrong with a child exploring the potty. What does that mean? It means you should allow them to touch it and even carry the potty around. You don’t want to make them think that the potty is a bad thing. Don’t yell at them or say that they shouldn’t touch the potty. Instead, encourage them to get familiar with the potty.
3. Pay attention to the signs your child needs to use the potty
A child may not be able to communicate that they need to use the potty. It’s your job to look for the telltale signs that a child has to go to the bathroom. Those signs are grunting and making faces. You should encourage them to use the potty if it appears that they need to go.
You don’t want to force it on them or put any added pressure. They will eventually get the idea that the potty is where they do their business. This isn’t a process that happens overnight. A lightbulb will ultimately go off in their head, and they’ll associate the need to go to the bathroom with the potty. Before that happens, you’re the one who leads them in the right direction.
4. Praise your child for a job well done
The way your child knows that going to the potty is essential is because you praise their job well done. You can’t go too far when letting them know how good of a job they’ve done. This reinforces the idea that going to the potty is a good thing. The world of potty training can seem like a scary, confusing place. The way you make it less so is by letting them know that they did a good job. You want to make sure you’re smiling, and you may even consider clapping. The whole idea is to convey to them how highly you regard what they did.
5. Candy and other rewards can be given in moderation
Everyone knows that too much candy is a bad thing for children and adults alike. With that said, you can give small amounts of candy after you’re done praising them after going to the potty. Sometimes telling a child that they did a good job isn’t enough. The old carrot on a stick trick works for just about everyone. A small piece of candy may be enough of a reward to make them want to use the potty again in the not so distant future.
It’s also possible to give them other things that they value after using the potty. Cheap toys are another good thing that can be given out. Stickers, pretzels, or whatever your child likes that won’t make you go bankrupt may be a good choice. The whole idea here is to give them something, so they want to go to the potty. It reinforces the idea in their mind that going to the potty is, in fact, a good thing.
6. Enjoy this period in your child’s life
That may sound like an odd or an impossible task. You don’t realize how precious the moments of your child’s life are until it’s too late. Each step to adulthood is a beautiful one. Sure, there’s a lot of work involved and plenty of uncomfortable situations that can be said of something as awkward as potty training.
However, don’t dismiss the fact that this is a beautiful time in your child’s life. You’ll never get these moments back. Always remember that you are building the groundwork for their growth later on.
Potty training is just another stage of childhood. Many will come and go. All of the steps are difficult and rewarding at the same time. The potty is new to your child and don’t forget that. Allow them to explore and be uncomfortable at times. It’s all a part of the learning process. So are accidents. Get ready for some messy ones. It’s all part of the territory that comes with being a parent. Enjoy each step and carve the memories in stone in your mind. Years down the road you’ll want to go back and relive them.