Toilet training tips for parents

By | November 15, 2013
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Toilet training tips for parents – Also difficulties in bowel control, soiling and difficulties in bladder control in children. Ninety per cent babies begin to develop voluntary (intentional) control over bladder and bowel between 1 year to 2 ½ years. In a large proportion, it occurs between 1 ½ years to 2 years.

Important toilet training tips for parents !

The baby usually gives a signal in the form of a gesture (say a grunt) or a family word such as su-su or chi-chi. The alert mother finds to difficulty in understanding that the child wants to pass motion or urine.

The whole thing does not happen just overnight. To begin with, he indicated to his mother that he has soiled his nappy. Later, he tells her in his own way as and when he is in the process of soiling it.

Still later, he indicates to her that he is just about to wet it. Eventually, he manages to indicate to her that he wishes to do so and gives her time to sort things out.

After this stage has arrived – which happens usually by two years of age – he can be relied upon to tell the mother on time about his approaching “movement”.

By the age of 2 ½ years, most babies will pull their pants down as soon as they feel the urge to urinate or defaecate. They are more or less dry at night though accidental “wetting” may occur until the age of five years.

toilet training tips for parents

In general, bladder control comes a few months later than bowel control. It is not so difficult for a child to control a movement as to control urine.

Most two-year-olds have complete control of movements. However several children of 2 ½ years of age still wet during day or night.

Never force him to sit on the potty. Else he will trouble you with behavioural problems later. Also, do not press him to sit on it for too long. On an average a sitting of a few minutes is enough.

Whether or not he has passed anything, let him get off if he wishes to. If the child indeed resists sitting on the potty, forget it for the time being. Perhaps you can try again after a gap of a week or so.

Another important point is – do not feel discouraged because your child has taken longer time to be adequately trained than your neighbour’s child.

If you are a believer in early training, you must start putting the baby on potty any time between seven and twelve months provided that the baby has movements at the same time of the day.

At this age he has developed little voluntary control and can sit comfortably and securely. It will be a good preparation for training if not the real training.

It is unwise to try this schedule if the baby’s movement is irregular. You will not know when he is to pass motion. To make him sit on the potty so frequently will mean testing his patience which is most undesirable. You will only be nurturing a rebellion in the mind of the little man.

The most natural age to put the child on the potty seems to be the second half of the second year. This is the age at which he may show more interest in the potty and may, in fact, give a signal of the approaching movement or urination.

Refer also how to stop bedwetting in children.

You must encourage him to give you a signal. Praise him for signaling today. Encourage him to tell you again tomorrow, the day after tomorrow and every day. Do not scold him for an accidental soiling of clothes.

Buy an attractive plastic potty for your baby. Let him play with it, get friendly with it and sit on it. You may suggest that it is meant to have a movement but do not try to force him to use it for this purpose.

toilet training tips for parents

More often that not, the baby will grow fond of it. This will become his proud possession. Someday he may well begin to pass motion in it.

These are the most important toilet training tips for parents, which must be clearly understood.

Difficulties in bowel control

During the bowel training period, see that the child does not get constipate. Unusually hard stools – especially one large piece with a big diameter – may cause pain.

At times, such a movement can result in a tear of the anus called anal fissure which is quite painful and takes a long time to heal. Such a child may attempt to hold back his movement lest it causes further pain.

What results is still harder stool. A vicious cycle is set up. Look up the doctor for advice. On your part, see that the child receives enough of fluids and juice in his daily diet to safeguard against hard stools. Avoid the use of laxatives or purgatives.

If a trained child becomes irregular, consult the doctor. It is possible he has developed an infection – say diarrhoea.

Teething, emotional upset, change of surroundings, and jealousy are some other factors that may cause relapse in a child who has once learnt control. Do not scold or rebuke him. Instead, encourage him in a friendly manner to tide over the situation and return to normalcy again in the course.

No sooner does he get away from the seat, than he moves his bowel in a corner of the room or perhaps in his panties. Do not try to be cross and bossy. That will only aggravate the situation.

toilet training tips for parents

Psychologists believe that this phenomenon results from the fact that the child has begun to think his stools are a part of his body and he wishes to hold on to his possession more obstinately.

Moreover, he wishes to do everything in his own way in the second year of life. Assertive types of boys show it most frequently. They love “fuss” and the entire family revolving round their movements.

This is one way they try to demonstrate their importance. You should not evince much interest in his refusal to sit on the potty and should not scold or punish him.

A wise change in management, a shift in tactics and lots of patience over weeks and at times months, will most likely bring about a positive response.


You should remember that your overenthusiastic attitude towards potty may lead to soiling in infancy. Another cause of soiling, especially if it develops after a period of bowel control, is emotional instability and insecurity.

But, experience has shown that if soiling occurs after the age of three or four years, chances are that the child is constipated. The child passes liquid material (around solid, impacted faecal lumps called faecolith) intermittently through the anus, thereby wetting his panties and the like.

You should not let the child’s constipation go on and on. Prevent it but if it occurs again, consult your doctor. May be he prescribe half a teaspoonful of Milk of Magnesia or liquid paraffin. Suppositories, purgatives and enemas are rarely, if ever, needed.

toilet training tips for parents

Difficulties in bladder control

Most children learn to be dry during the day at the age of two years; by three years, they are dry by night too.

If the child, for instance, starts passing urine excessively, make sure he does not have urinary tract infection. Your doctor will need a urine sample to examine and to tell you if it is an infection or not.

Occasionally, your child may have constant dribbling of urine every minute. Your doctor will certainly like to investigate the child for a malformation which is generally correctable by surgery.

Excessive frequency of urine in association with excessive thirst and voracious appetite could well be a manifestation of diabetes mellitus. There is wisdom in bringing it to the notice of the doctor.

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