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When to Start Potty Training your child.

Updated on July 23, 2017

When to start potty training your child is hard to answer as every child is very different. Of all the stages of development of my children and grandchildren I found this one the most challenging. However as time went on there were things that I learned with each child. By the time I came to help my grandchildren it was a lot easier. For the first two years of your baby's life, they just wet their diapers and don't seem to be aware of what is happening. Sometime between age two and three years, children develop an awareness of others using the toilet and also when they are wetting and doing a poo.

Signs that your child is ready for potty training.

  • Their nappy is dry for about 2 hours at a time.
  • They tell you when they are "going" in their nappy.
  • They want to copy you or a sibling when you go.
  • They have regular bowel movements at a similar time each day.
  • Can sit quietly in the same position for about 5 minutes
  • They are pleased when praised and do something well.
  • They are generally cooperative and not showing a negative response to potty training.
  • Can follow simple instructions.

The big question is are YOU ready to potty train your child?!!!

When not to start potty training your child.

  • When travelling.
  • Around the birth of a new brother or sister.
  • When moving house.
  • When changing from a crib to a bed.
  • When there is any serious upset to family life.
  • When your child is sick.

What type of potty do we use?

There are generally speaking two types of potty. One which stands alone and can vary from a small potty to a miniature child's toilet.The other is a seat of various styles which you set on top of your toilet or under the seat and which your child can feel safe sitting on.


If you can get hold of a book written for children on using the potty, read it to your child in a fun, happy way and talk about this new exciting thing he or she is going to learn.

Potty training should not be stressful.

Today we start potty training!

  • Show your child how to sit on the potty or seat.
  • Try giving him a book to read while sitting
  • At all times give praise for even sitting for a few minutes
  • Start a routine of when you are going to set your child on the potty.
  • Setting them on 15 mins after each meal is a good idea.
  • Don't force your child to stay on the potty.
  • If you catch your child in the act of doing a poo, encourage them to sit on the potty but don't force.
  • You might try a period of 'no pants' as this sometimes helps the child to be more aware of what is happening.
  • Offer rewards for success in using the potty.

At all times make sure this is not a stressful situation for your child.

Don't show disappointment even when the pee or poo doesn't go in the potty. This can be difficult but it is unquestionably the best way. Remember to constantly reassure them that soon they will be using the toilet like the bigger kids.

© 2013 Jane51


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    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 8 months ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks for these sensible suggestions. Will share.