If you think your child's ready to wean off of diapers but don't know where to begin, This application steps will lead you through potty training from start to finish.
Many parents are unsure about when to start toilet teaching or "potty training." Not all kids are ready at the same age, so it's important to watch your child for signs of readiness, such as stopping an activity for a few seconds or clutching his or her diaper.
Most children begin to show these signs between 18 and 24 months, although some may be ready earlier or later than that. And boys often start later and take longer to learn to use the potty than girls.
Instead of using age as a readiness indicator, look for other signs that your child may be ready to start heading for the potty, such as the ability to:
- follow simple instructions
- understand words about the toileting process
- control the muscles responsible for elimination
- verbally express a need to go
- keep a diaper dry for 2 hours or more
- get to the potty, sit on it, and then get off the potty
- pull down diapers, disposable training pants, or underpants
- show an interest in using the potty or wearing underpants
Children usually reach a point where they no longer want to wear diapers, and would prefer to use the potty or toilet instead. Although this usually doesn't cause any problems, parents often wonder what they could do to make this transition easier for their child. Is there a right or wrong time to start encouraging a child to stop using diapers? Research suggests that it could be a good idea to start thinking about potty training when your child is about two years old.
After birth, children begin a long learning process. As their brains develop, new connections form between nerve cells. Control over the body's muscles and internal organs needs to develop too. Children learn to control their bladder and bowel movements over time. These are complex processes in which various hormones, the nervous system and muscles all play a role.
The speed at which children develop varies greatly. Bladder and bowel control is just like any other part of child development. For example, some children already start walking at ten months, while others start after one and a half years or later. Studies involving several hundred children have shown that most children start using the potty between the ages of two and three years. But the research showed considerable differences between individual children: while some children had already learned to use the potty or toilet by the age of two, others only learned when they were four years old. In general, though, children usually aren't ready to use the potty before the age of 18 months. There is no need to hurry anyway: if a child starts potty training relatively early, it often takes longer for him or her to succeed than it would at a later point in time.
Research hasn't been able to pinpoint an ideal time to toilet train. But some studies have suggested that children have difficulties changing their habits if they're much older than two by the time they start potty training. These studies also concluded that it doesn't help to pressure your child into using the potty. Doing this may even end up leading to other problems like constipation.