How to Potty Train
There are so many different schools of thought on how to potty train your child. Some people advocate waiting until the child is ready and others say that it is more about teaching a child a skill that is necessary later on. As children get older, yes, they will naturally come to understand what it is they are supposed to do with the potty, but they also tend to get more defiant about following through. Learning how to potty train at an older age is sometimes difficult because the children are simply comfortable doing what they are doing and do not want to learn to interrupt activities to relieve themselves.
How to Potty Train: The Longer and Easier Way
There is the longer, easy way and there is the committed, harder way that is significantly shorter to do this for this age group. It all depends on the kind of time that you want to take to make it happen and how committed you are to consistency. When you work on how to potty train you need to decide which way you want to go. For some, simple rewards like stickers work every time your little one goes on the potty. Getting them excited about picking out underwear can sometimes help too. This technique typically takes several weeks to several months, but it does eventually happen. They will get excited for stickers but may not make it to the potty every time. Positive reinforcement is what the stickers are all about as your little one is potty training.
How to Potty Train: The Process
You can start out by putting your child in pullups and taking him or her to the potty every 20 minutes or so. As you learn your child’s patterns, you can take your child over longer periods of time. Offer plenty of fluids throughout the day so your child has multiple opportunities to go. For every time that you sit your child down on the potty and he or she goes, offer a sticker or other reward. Some parents use Skittles or other such treat. Praise them for the wonderful job they have done and then repeat. It is all about consistency. Give it time and your little one will catch on eventually.
How to Potty Train: The Shorter and Harder Way
The harder way takes a bigger toll on you as a parent, but the results are quick and you don’t ever have to look back at diapers again. This method requires that you prep before you embark on the potty training journey. Plan for a three-day weekend minimum where you will not cook, clean, watch TV, or play video games. You will do nothing but focus on your child for the entire weekend, no holds barred. Either cook enough meals for this weekend ahead of time or have someone else cook for you if you can. If you are doing this together with your significant other, the same goes for him or her. Absolutely nothing else to focus on but your child while teaching your child. Buy plenty of underwear too because you are going to need them for your little one. Purchase at least about 30 or so pairs of underwear. Yes, really about 30 pairs because you will not have time to do much laundry over the next couple of days and they pile up quick. They don’t have to be fancy or even have designs on them. Dollar store undies will work just fine. Once you have decided you are ready, it is time to potty train.
How to Potty Train: The Process
Let’s assume you have made the commitment to focus on your child and nothing else over the next few days. You will start by removing the diapers/pullups completely the first morning. If your child resists, be firm and simply say that they are not an option anymore. You are the parent and what you say has to go. Some parents find it easier if they tell their children in advance to give them some kind of warning of what to expect. That morning, you will bid adieu to diapers and begin to potty train by putting your little one in nothing but underwear and a t-shirt for the next few days. Here comes the part where you need to be especially vigilant and focused on your little one. For every single dribble to full-on accident, you need to run your little one to the potty and remind him or her to tell you when she or he needs to go. The first day will be really rough because your little one likely won’t make it a single time to the potty. Have plenty of cleaning supplies on hand that you can grab quickly to clean up the messes with which means having a ton of paper towels and a disinfectant cleaner nearby. The second day will get easier although it still won’t be easy. Most of the second day, your little one will likely still have accidents, but don’t give up! The best is yet to come! If accidents are still happening regularly on the second day, that third day will show you the light at the end of the tunnel. Your little one will understand that he/she needs to go to the potty every time the urge for relief is felt. Every time your little one makes it to the potty and goes, praise them incessantly with lots of clapping and cheering even if it is just a drop or a dribble. After the initial learning curve, the rest is just reinforcement. Yes, this method takes a lot more commitment over a shorter amount of time, but as you will find that as your little one learns how to potty train, this is much faster as well.
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