Identify and Manage Problems
As parents, we all know that toilet training a small child is never a perfect process. One of the best ways to overcome setbacks is to identify the problem, read about what to expect, and find out how to best manage the problem.
Common Toilet Training Problems
- An unwillingness to learn how to go to the toilet
- Not being mentally or physically ready yet
- Regression to old habits
- Consistent accidents
- Resistance to following simple instructions like “sit on the potty” or “wash your hands”
- Lack of dexterity: unable to pull their pants up and down
Avoid Problems by Making Sure Your Toddler is Ready
If you think you may be starting too early, or your toddler may not be ready for toilet training, check the signs of readiness again. You may decide that it’s better to delay for a while.
1. Your Toddler Is Beginning Something New
As with anything, the first time anybody at an early age is introduced to something for the first time, they are going to have a few struggles. We are not all experts the first time we try something, you need to remember that your toddler is in a “beginner” level of learning something new, and it’s even harder for them because their brain hasn’t fully developed.
2. Don’t Rush Things
Remember that there is no prize for first place in toilet training so there’s no need to hurry things along if your toddler says “no” or snubs their potty. You can lead a toddler to the toilet but you cannot make them pee.
The best thing to do in this situation is to play the waiting game. Don’t stress about having to change nappies for a little while longer, just because you think it’s time, isn’t going to get your toddler any more ready than they are.
3. Remind them
Even if it seems as though your toddler is all trained up and going to the bathroom with ease, it’s a good idea to avoid regression with little reminders about what they’ve learned, from time to time.
Try to remind them how to:
- wash their hands
- pull their pants up and down when they need to go
- recognise when they should go to the toilet, like before bed and when they wake up
4. Stay Positive
If your toddler consistently has accidents or it feels as though they are taking a while to get the hang of things, don’t be discouraged.
Some children don’t learn complete bladder control until about five years old. Just know that it’s not the end of the world and the more time you commit to teaching them good habits, the quicker they will understand the basics of going to the toilet.
If your toddler doesn’t want to respond to simple instructions, whether they are related to going to the toilet or not, then you will no doubt run into problems.
5. Problems With Pulling Their Pants Up and Down
Having the dexterity to be able to pull their pants up and down is an important step in the process. For example, ideally you want your toddler be able to:
- recognise the urge to go
- make it to the toilet or potty
- pull their pants down
- use the toilet
After they are done you want them to:
- pull their pants up
- wash their hands
That’s a lot for a little person to grasp. Pulling their pants up and down is one thing, but they also they need to clearly understand when to do it. Help them by reminding them as much as possible.
A Bit About Regression
In some cases, parents have taken their toddler through their toilet training journey and reached the supposed ‘finish line’. Your toddler is toilet trained! You celebrate all the hard work you’ve done and then all of a sudden your toddler starts to have accidents.
Regression can be frustrating and it means that you need to go back to basics. Communicate clear expectations and give clear responses with positive reinforcement. i.e. communicating clearly what expectations are being met and which are not and rewarding accordingly.
If you’re having trouble toilet training your toddler, read about some cool Toilet Training Tools that will have your toddler eager to learn!