What You Should Know about Potty training

Potty training

Potty training also known as toilet training is the process through which a child is taught how to use the toilet for defecation and urination. It is referred to as potty training because the training normally begins with potty which is a toilet bowl-shaped plastic. Culture and age are the most determinant factors as regards when and how toilet training should be given. In some tribes in Africa, it normally starts when a baby becomes 1 year old. But today in the United States, it starts at the third year of a child. Some mothers may decide to start earlier in order to cut cost on diapers. Gender is another factor that play important role in potty training. Male babies usually start toilet training later than female babies.

Potty training can be difficult. However, today, various techniques have been developed to make potty training easier for the caregivers and fun and enjoyable for the children. Unlike before when punishment was emphasised, newer toilet training techniques lay more emphasis on positive reinforcement and consistency. This makes it more enjoyable to the child. Various applications have been developed to explain, motivate and engage the toilet training process. Potty songs are employed today to make the task more enjoyable. Some songs teach the sequence of the steps required from the point of view of children.

The benefits of Potty training

Potty training is a necessary part of child’s care and parents should take it very seriously since children cannot teach themselves how to use the toilets. Though, there are different toilet training techniques and practices, but they all have the same goal and benefits. No matter the practices acceptable in your location or the techniques you apply, the end point will still be the same. Here are some of the benefits of potty training.

Helps you to avoid insult from other parents

Toilet training has some societal implication. Every society or culture expects a child to stop defecating or urinating in a diaper at a particular age which differs from culture to culture. If a child stills wears diapers when he or she is supposed to be using the toilet, it is taken that the parents of the child have failed in their duty. In some cultures, the child may be mocked by other people. So, as a parent, you should teach your child how to use the toilet at the right time in order to avoid the societal pressure. Other parents can even add to the pressure when your child is not able to use the toilet at the right time.

Cutting cost on diapers

Teaching your child to use the toilet on time helps you to save some money. Parents spend a lot of money on diapers. Several diapers are used on daily basis by a child that has not learnt how to use the toilet. Regular purchase of diapers can impose some financial burden on some parents. If your child learns how to use the toilet on time, it means that you will be saving some money on diapers because the child will either use it less frequently or will not use it at all.

Environmental benefits

Potty training also benefits the environment and helps the government to save money to a certain extent. Disposable diapers help to fill up the landfill easily. However, the problem is that some of the diapers are not biodegradable. Such items are not good to the environment. Besides, a lot of energy and resources are required for the production of the diapers. This also has some impact on the environment.

Apart from the negative impact of diapers on the environment, it also increases the amount of money the government spends in managing the landfill. As it has been said above, the government spend huge amount of money on yearly basis for the management of landfill. The cost will become higher if the landfills get filled up easily with non-decomposable items. Toilet training helps in reducing the quantity of diapers thrown to the landfill and thus it also reduces the amount of money the government spend in managing it.

Health benefits

There are a number of health benefits that can be drawn from toilet training. It has been discovered that through several studies that later toilet training may increase the risk of bowel problems or urinary tract infections as well as lack of bladder control. Besides, it helps to reduce the spread of faecal related diseases in preschools and day care facilities. If preschoolers are able to use the toilet, infectious diarrhoea will not easily spread among children in preschools. But the reverse is always the case if children are not able to use the toilet.


As it has been said, there is always societal pressure to utilise the toilet. It is not only the parents that feel the pressure. Young children still using the diapers especially those who are expected to use the toilet feel the societal pressure also. Studies have shown the societal pressure to use the toilet is also felt by preschoolers. Given this, potty trained children tend to have more self-esteem in the preschool socialization world. They are more independent than their peers that are still using diapers. Being potty trained will give your child control over his or her body and a positive self-image.

Make your work easier

Changing diapers always and cleaning the child up can be very tiresome for some mothers. It takes some time. If your child is potty trained, you will not be spending time on changing of diapers. You will only have to help the child to clean up after defecating. So, your day care task as a parent is reduced to a certain extent.

The above are some of the benefits of toilet training to the child, parents and society at large.

Potty training

Signs that your child is ready for toilet training

Though each culture expects a child to be using the toilet at a particular time, children normally show signs that they are ready for toilet training. So, you can start potty training if you observe that your little genius is itching to say no to diapers.  Unfortunately, some mothers do not notice the signs their babies are showing them to start the potty training. You must not wait for your child to reach the culturally required age for potty training before you can start teaching him or her how to use the toilet. When you notice your child giving any of the signs below, it may be indication that he or she wants to start using the toilet like every other person.

Using fewer diapers

At earlier age especially during the first 20 months after delivery, children have no control over their bladder and bowel. They pee and defecate a lot and as they want. It will be an exercise in futility to start toilet training that time. But when you notice that your toddler remains dry for a long hour or wakes up sometimes without bedwetting, it is a sign that the baby is ready for toilet training.

Predicting your child’s bowel movement

If you start predicting the bowel movement of your child no matter what he or she is fed with, it may start toilet training. Maintaining a regular rhythm will help the child to become successful in toilet training.

Becoming aware of the body’s function

At a particular time of their development, children begin to be aware of their bowel movement and other function. Though some children may be able to verbally communicate this in a childlike manner, others may not be able to verbally communicate it. But they will always give signs to show that they will want to defecate. Once you notice that your child is becoming aware of his or her bowel movement, you can begin to teach him or her how to use the toilet.

Despises personal messes

At the early stage, children do not despise dirty diapers. They can put their fingers on their poo-poo in attempt to take the dirty diapers you just changed. But at a certain time, they will start despising dirty diapers. This shows that they are no longer comfortable defecating on the diapers. This is the right time to start toilet training because the child has just started disliking faeces like any other person.

Capable of performing simple undressing

Being able to use the potty implies that the child will be able to perform some simple undressing. Potty training comes almost to nothing if a child cannot yank down the trouser or hike up the skirts as the case may be when nature calls. So, you can start potty training when you notice that your child is able to undress himself or herself.

Wanting to follow you to the loo

Children are very inquisitive to learn new things. One of the signs that a child shows when he or she is ready to use the toilet is to start following you to the loo. It is an indication that the child thinks of toilet and he or she will want to see how it is done. So, if you notice that your child always want to follow you to the toilet each time you want to answer nature, you should begin toilet teaching at that time.

Understand toilet lingo

Normally, every parent has a toilet or bathroom lingo for the children such as pee, poop, urinate, defecate and others. When your child starts to understand and use your bathroom lingo as well as the related body parts, it is time to start toilet training.


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