It must have seemed like just yesterday when your bundle of joy was born. And in a blink of an eye, they are growing up into a mini-you or your spouse. If you’re looking to have them say goodbye to nappies, here are a few tips on how to potty train your kiddo.
1. Make sure your child is ready
Firstly, you need to make sure your child is ready for potty training. Signs of readiness include staying dry for at least 2 hours during the day or waking up dry after naps and showing interest in wearing ‘big boys’ or ‘big girls’ underwear. Besides that, consider if your child is aware when he/she is wet by expressing discomfort when their diapers are soiled.
Before starting, it would be helpful to prep them mentally by introducing them to the toilet and having books or toys regarding potty training laying around in the house to familiarise them with it.
Your child may be young, but they react to stress too. They are unlikely to pick up this new skill well under stress. Hence, it is advisable not to start potty training when new changes are happening around them such as a new school or a new sibling.
2. Get the house ready
Next, get your training tools ready. Choices include standalone potties which you can place it where your child spends most of his/her time or potty toppers that sit on the toilet seat and step-stools for your child to climb up to their ‘throne’ and rest their feet.
You can also have your child choose their potties so that they would be excited and more encouraged to use it.
3. Put them on the toilet often
When you first start potty training, you would want to put your child on the toilet often, about every 15-20 minutes. This is to teach them to feel the urge to go. Have them sing a song or read a book to them while they are having their time.
It is good practice to train them on toilet hygiene as soon as they start potty training. Teach them about wiping clean and washing their hands after.
5. Naked time
Let your child have some ‘naked time’ and roam around in the house freely without putting on diapers or underwear. Without them, they would have no choice but to deposit their pee or poop somewhere and the potty would be a great place to do that.
6. Positive reinforcement
It would be useful to implement some positive reinforcements during the training. Compliment your child or give them a reward whenever he/she successfully uses the potty. This would build their self-esteem and motivate them to keep using it. However, do not over-compliment them as any ‘accidents’ would deflate their self-esteem and self-confidence and may cause regression.
7. Acknowledge accidents and move on
It is also important to acknowledge the occasional ‘accidents’ made by your child during the training and let them know that it happens and they shouldn’t let it damper their self-esteem.
8. Be patient
And lastly, dear parents, please be patient with your child. Do not push them to get through the training at your desired pace. Instead let them take their time, follow their pace and guide them through it.
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