Well, I have some more tips and a few more methods and maybe even a few ideas for those who want to start potty training in maybe 6+ months.
There are other forces that can make potty training difficult even for typical kids. Fear often plays a major role. Potty training tends to come at an age when children's fears are most intense. It is important to make the process as stress free as possible. If your child seems to be afraid of the toilet itself, then gradually adapt him to the potty.
- Have him sit on one of the little potties fully clothed for a few minutes each day while you read to him or tell him a story.
- After a little while, take his diaper off so he can sit on it just like Dad and Mom.
- Begin putting the contents of his dirty diapers in the potty so he can see what happens.
- Then, give him the opportunity to run around bare-bottomed so he can try to go on the potty if he wants. (This will most likely be a messy experience, be prepared!)
- The desire for approval is another strong motivating force that impacts potty training.
It is important that you have set aside a lot of time, especially in the beginning, to dedicate to the process. Also, do not start the potty training process at a time that is already stressful for the child.
The Naked Method
Many people have used the naked method where they allow the child to run around naked (while at home) in order to have the kid really feel and realize when they have gone to the bathroom. This is a messy one but can be successful.
Spend at least one week charting the times of day your child eats, drinks, wets, soils, gets changed (with results), and sleeps. Use a day planner, chart or simply write down each item and the time it occurs in a log. At the end of the week, look at the data (or log) and see if you see can pick out some general patterns of toileting.
Intensive Toilet Training
This is a highly structured schedule which starts the child sitting on the potty every 30 minutes.
As mentioned in the Part 1 post, a sticker chart for going potty can be a great reinforcing tool, especially for visual learners. A sticker for each time they go potty can then add up to a special reinforcement, like a trip to their favorite restaurant or park or getting a new toy or movie.
It is important to tie the reinforcer with social praise at all times.
To start out:
- Set a thirty minute toileting schedule, and set a timer so the child has a visual and auditory cue indicating when it is time to go sit on the toilet.
- Take the child as consistently as possible every thirty minutes to sit for a couple minutes on the potty. Even if the child does not have success, make sure to reinforce the child for sitting and trying.
Ideas to Prep for the Future:
1. Acknowledge when your baby is having a bowel movement. Associate a word with it, poo poo, poop...
2. Let your baby watch you go to the bathroom. This is more for children 9+ months old.
3. Buy a small potty and keep it around long before you plan on using it.
4. Have your baby sit on the potty while they are going - even with the diaper on.
5. Let them go diaper free every once in a while.
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