Potty Training Like a Pro!

Most parents can't wait until their child no longer needs diapers! There is added pressure and advice from relatives, friends and other parents that boast, but the reality is, children potty train when they are ready.

Try not to rush potty training. Children will be fully trained anywhere from ages 2 1/2 years and 4 years of age and night trained by 8 years of age.

You cannot force your child to sit on the toilet. Punishing and nagging does not help. If your child refuses to use a potty, developmentally they may not be ready.

How do you know when your child is ready for potty training?

  • Your child will tell you when they are wet or poopy.
  • Your child will wait to poop or wet their diaper.
  • Your child will show an interest in the potty.
  • Your child can pull down their own pants, and undress themselves.
  • They have longer dry periods.
  • Predictable times for bowel movements.

Don't worry if your child is slower than others at learning how to potty train.

Potty training can take anywhere from 1 month to several months before your child is mostly dry. Children will still accidentally pee or poop their pants for a year or more after training. It's much easier to learn how to pee in a toilet than it is to poo. Some children wait until their diaper is on before they poop and this is normal.


Here are some tips to help you get your child ready for toilet training:

  • Put your child in pants, the feeling of wet pants may help your child realize when they're wet
  • Dress your child in clothing that is easy to get off and on
  • Talk about the potty and get your child familiar with it. Read them a potty book or let them sit on it
  • Letting your child see you use the bathroom will help them learn. Talk to them about what you are doing
  • Only use diapers when your child is sleeping, or riding in the car
  • Be sure to get everything you need to help your child feel more comfortable. (A toilet seat ring, and stool, or a child sized potty)

For boys and girls it's a little bit different. Sometimes it's easier to teach boys to pee sitting down first.

Once your child is potty trained you can have dad or an older brother show your son how to pee while standing.

When teaching girls how to wipe, teach them to wipe from front to back. (Prevents infections)

Potty training is a learning process and there will be accidents. Sometimes children will pee right after they finished sitting on the toilet. This is normal, and it just means that you are putting your child on the potty at the right time.

Here are some tips to prevent accidents:

  • Make the potty easily accessible
  • Ask your child to sit on the potty at appropriate times (like before bed and just waking up in the morning)
  • Keep your child in diapers at night until your child can stay dry until morning
  • Encourage your child to use the toilet, even when you're are not home

Remember that children have accidents when they are sick, tired, or when their routine is disrupted. Sometimes when your child is stressed from big changes, it's best to take a break from potty training. (Family vacations, new baby) Begin potty training when things return to normal.

When accidents happen

Stay calm and say "oops! You are wet, let's get you out of those clothes."

Do not make your child feel bad, make it noticeable to others or punish your child. Try not to talk too much or make accidents fun.

Teach your child the steps on how to use the toilet.

  • Tell someone!
  • Go to the potty
  • Pull down pants
  • Sit on potty
  • Pee or poop
  • Ask for help to wipe
  • Flush
  • Wash hands!

Ask your child often if they need to go potty. Watch for signs your child may need to go. (Dancing, holding themselves, not moving to pop, hiding)

Praise, praise and praise some more!

It may be a good idea to have a treat box on hand. (Two jelly beans for a poop and one for a pee. Or a Sticker chart)