Children grow up so fast, don’t they? Little & Brave understands how overwhelming it might be trying to keep up with everything you need to do and what you will need to have prepared for it. One of these milestones is when your child is finally ready to graduate from the Little & Brave nappies to needing to be potty trained. It can be hard to figure out at what point in time your child is ready for it and how can you go about it in a way which will suit them the best. 

Worry not - we are here to walk you through it. We will go through the signs that your child is ready for potty training and also share some tips and tricks to allow this process to be as smooth as can be.

Is my child ready to be potty-trained?

Children usually show signs of being able to be potty trained from when they are around 18-24 months. This is not a rule though, so here are some other signs you can watch out for to help you know for sure – 

  • when they pull at a wet/dirty nappy
  • when they feel the need to hide while doing potty 
  • when they start taking an interest in how others use the toilet or potty
  • When they take longer than usual to dirty their nappy
  • When they wake up from a nap and their nappy is still dry
  • When they start telling if they have gone or if they are about to go in their nappies. 

If your child shows two or more of these signs then it is time for them to be potty trained. 

How long does it take?

Every baby is different! The time it takes to potty train varies from baby to baby and it also depends on the time you start to train your child. It can take between 3 to 6 months for a child to learn how to use the toilet but may also take longer if you start training your child too soon. 

The Potty Training Process

Potty training is a huge milestone and it might seem a bit scary if you aren’t prepared. So, here we have listed the three major steps you can take to make this process as worry-free as possible. 

1. Preparation 

The first step would be to buy a potty! It is recommended that you start with one which rests on the floor instead of one which has to be attached to a toilet. This will make sure that the kid is not scared of the potty. Keeping it in a familiar place, not just in the toilet, will help your child become more comfortable around it.

2. Training

There are quite a few steps when it comes to the actual process of potty-training your child:

  • Start by making your child sit on the potty while fully clothed so that they can get a feel of what it would be like. Then start doing this after removing their clothes. This will help reinforce that the child has to remove their clothes before they sit on the potty. 
  • Once your child is comfortable with this, you can go on to the next step. The next time your child soils their nappies, make them watch you put them in the potty so they will be able to understand that this is where it goes. Explain that this is where their wee and poo go here. 
  • Keep an eye out for signs that your child is looking to empty their bowels. If you see them grunting or moving into a particular position, ask them if they want to go. It also helps if your child watches you use the toilet. Make them use their potty while you use the toilet. 
  • Make sure that your child is wearing clothing that is easy to remove like trousers with no buttons or a skirt. This will ease the process and make it quicker for them when they have to go. 
  • You can also try enlisting the support of other people in their life constantly like their grandparents or aunts and uncles. Having multiple sources of support and expectation will help your child a great deal. 

3. Reinforcement

Keep in mind that potty training is not an overnight process, and takes a lot of time and patience for you and your little one. 

Even if your child understands what they need to do quickly, there is a high possibility that it is a temporary understanding and they will have to be taught again. So, you will need to make sure that what you are teaching remains in their mind.

Here are some of the tips we recommend: 

  • Praise your child when they do something right! Do not lose your temper when they make mistakes. If they are resistant to something new, it is a sign that it is not yet time for it. Take a break and come back to it in maybe a few days or weeks. 
  • Gradually make the shift from nappies to underwear. While some children will be eager for the change, some will find it scary. Watch how your child reacts to the change and pace things accordingly. 
  • A lot of children find the sound of the flush scary. For a while, you might need to flush the toilet only after they have left the room. But this fear is temporary and you will soon be able to teach them to flush every time they use it. The most important thing is to watch your child’s reactions to everything and to be patient.

How to Tackle Common Problems 

The key is to be patient and calm.

One of the most common problems when it comes to potty training is when children have accidents during times of great stress. For example, if your child is in a stressful situation, they may not have been able to remember having to go to the toilet when they need to relieve themselves. This happens often if there is a younger sibling or a new baby in the house. In such cases, it is best to be calm, understanding and sympathetic to what your child is going through. Try not to add on to their stress by losing your temper or showing frustration. 

Another common problem faced is when your child simply does not want to sit still on the potty. This is easily handled by trying to keep them entertained while they are on the pot. 

In the case that your child keeps wetting themselves despite them understanding clearly what they should be doing, do not lose your temper. Consider speaking with a doctor about any potential problems your little one may be going through.

Any other issues you may face while potty training can be solved by talking to your child and having them understand why it is an issue. If it does not work, do not worry. Make sure to be patient and understanding so that your child is not pressured. It will only negatively impact your child if you show any anger. 

The Bottom Line

Potty training is no walk in the park and every child has their own way of learning. Be patient with  your child and yourself and we’re certain you’ll get to where you want to be! With the right preparations, a keen eye out for any signs, and a lot of patience you will be able to master the training process and help your child in the best way.

Take a deep breath in the middle of all the baby chaos with Little & Brave! We have your back for all your baby’s joys and troubles with informative content that can help improve your quality of life while still caring for the environment. Do stop by our How To pages on combating common issues like nappy rashes and sleep safety to learn more.