Let's Get This Potty Started!

More Helping Training Tips:

• Use praise, applause, special songs, reading a special book in the bathroom, or whatever else resonates with your child.
• Avoid pressure: your child will likely have accidents during the process. Don’t punish him or her for any setbacks.
• Be sure that your nanny understands your approach to potty training and is consistent with rewards, praise, etc.
• Let your child pick out new "big kid" underpants with his/her favorite characters (Dora, Thomas the Train, etc.) on them.
• Use potty-themed books and videos to reinforce key messages.
• Don't begin toilet training during a stressful time (e.g., moving, new baby, starting a new preschool, etc.)
• Recognize that your child has control of his/her bodily functions, and you can’t get him/her to “go” on the potty until s/he is ready. Don’t turn this into a power struggle because it’s one that you won’t win. If your child seems to develop a resistance to potty training, don’t continue the potty training. You can resume potty training when you child again expresses an interest in learning to use the potty.
• When your child has completed a visit to the potty, show your child how to flush the potty. Some children experience fear of the flushing mechanism: they fear that they themselves may be flushed away. You may need to flush the potty for your child for a period of time, until your child observes no harm resulting from each flush. At that time, your child should naturally develop a desire to try his/her own hand at flushing the potty. Once the potty is flushed, show your child how to wash his/her hands.

Calmly and patiently teaching your child how to use his/her potty can be a trust-building, bonding experience for both of you. Let the potty begin!

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