Potty training

“Potty-training” or “toilet-training” refers to teaching your child to recognize their body’s urges to urinate or have a bowel movement and use a potty or toilet appropriately. There is no specific age when your child is ready for potty-training but most children begin to be able to control their bowel and bladder between the ages of two to three years. The average age of toilet training is 27 months.

Your child will let you know when he’s ready for potty-training. Look out for the following signs he may be ready:

  • They can tell you when they needs to go to the potty and asks for diaper changes
  • They can control the muscles used for going to the potty (including by having stretches of more than two hours during the day when their diaper is dry, or is dry after naps or overnight sleep.)
  • Shows discomfort when the diaper is soiled
  • Shows interest in the bathroom or toilet

There are many approaches to potty training. Parents should be consistent with their approach and understand that there will likely be some challenges. Every child learns at their own pace.

Common questions

potty training

How do I know if my child is ready for potty training?

Your child may be ready for potty training if they show signs like telling you when they need to go, asking for diaper changes, staying dry for longer periods (over two hours), showing discomfort with soiled diapers, and showing interest in the bathroom or toilet. These signs typically appear between the ages of two to three years.

What is the average age for children to start potty training?

The average age for starting potty training is around 27 months. However, it's important to remember that every child is different, and readiness can vary. Some children may show signs of readiness earlier or later than this average age.

What are some effective approaches to potty training?

There are various approaches to potty training, but consistency is key. Some parents use a reward system, while others may opt for a more relaxed approach. It's important to choose a method that works for your family and to be patient, as there will likely be challenges along the way.

How can I support my child during the potty training process?

Support your child by offering encouragement and praise for their efforts. Be patient and understanding, as accidents are a normal part of the learning process. Make sure the bathroom is accessible and consider using a potty chair or a step stool for the regular toilet. Regularly asking your child if they need to go can also be helpful.

What should I do if my child is resistant to potty training?

If your child is resistant to potty training, it may be helpful to take a break and try again in a few weeks. Avoid pressuring them, as this can lead to more resistance. Instead, encourage them and look for signs that they may be more ready to try again. Consulting with your pediatrician can also provide additional strategies and reassurance.

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