It can be tricky to communicate with your toddler what is expected of them in potty training, and how to actually do a wee in the potty. I can imagine there are some inventive ways that people have attempted this, but here are our top 10 tips. Some of these can be started before the nappy is taken away and intensive training begins.
1. Check whether your child is physically ready: Able to sit on toilet/potty for long enough, are they doing a regular soft poo and can their bladder store wee for at least 1.5 hours?
2. Introduce toilet time about twenty minutes after a drink, half an hour after a meal and start to keep track of when they tend to have wet nappies or accidents so that you can start to strategically time when you encourage them to sit on the potty.
3. Encourage them go for a wee when they first wake up in the morning, after daytime naps and last thing before bed.
4. Help them to start making connections: place some folded up kitchen roll in their nappy or put a Dry Like Me Pad in their pants so they learn to associate weeing with being wet.
5. Make sure they are drinking well: giving them 6-8 cups of water based fluid throughout the day will help them to get a good, strong full bladder signal which they will learn to respond to.
6. Talk about wee and poo: read picture books together to give your child an understanding of what is going to be expected of them when their nappy has gone.
7. Make it fun so they are happy and relaxed about sitting on the potty – have a bag of washable toys ready to explore whilst sitting on the potty. Likewise, let them decorate their potty with stickers.
8. Make it comfortable. If they are uncomfortable and don’t relax then it’s harder for them to sit for long enough to so anything. If using the toilet, use a toilet seat adapter and a step stool. Some children have a preference for either the toilet or a potty, so encourage them to try both.
9. Let them watch you, older siblings or their friends as many children learn by imitating what’s going on around them.
10. If your toddler isn’t happy to sit on the potty, or really isn’t understanding what’s expected it can help to start by placing an open nappy on the potty and letting them sit and try to wee on that.