The time has come to graduate from nappies to pants, hello potty training. For each child, the age on this really varies, but any time from 2 and a half is a good start. Some children may be eager to whip those nappies off , whereas others may need a little more encouragement! Don’t compare your child to anyone else’s, remember they will all get there eventually. Being nappy free definitely has its perks, and will of course save you those pennies, nappies are pricey! Here are some of my tips and tricks to make this transition as smooth (and as dry) as possible…
Take a special trip to the shop and let them pick out their own pants! They may be the brightest pants in the entire shop, but just roll with it. Make it a big deal and get super excited, this way they’ll feel really enthusiastic themselves. Giving them some form of independence in this process will really help them want to wear them.
First up, decide whether you’re doing potty training, or killing two birds with one stone and going straight for the loo. Whatever you and your little one decide, stick with it.
If you’ve chosen to use a potty, make sure you keep this in the bathrooms only. As tempting as it is to pop them all around the house for ‘ease’, your child will never learn the feeling to hold and wait until they get to the potty. Make it fun for them and choose a couple together, or let them pop a few stickers on!
Opted for the loo? Make sure you’re equipped. A little step to help them clamber up, and a seat to stop them falling in are all you need. Not only is this easier and safer for them to use, but it will give them that much needed feeling of independence which is what they want.
Out and About
As tempting as it is to stay in forever, you’ll eventually need to brave it and go out and about. Firstly, remember ALL parents go through this, so no one is watching or judging you. Make sure you’re prepared with multiple sets of spare clothes (socks included…!), wipes, nappy bags and antibac. Get yourself a portable potty to carry around with you for ease.
The My Carry Potty is equally great and easy to carry. You can choose from a whole assortment of colours and animals, and can be hooked onto your buggy, what a great accessory!
Antibac Wipes, Spray, Carpet Cleaner…the lot!
Make sure you’re stocked up with everything you may need. To start with, there will be many accidents. And that’s okay! Stock up on antibac wipes, spray, carpet cleaner and kitchen roll. Remember, accidents are OKAY!
The moment everyone dreads…the journeys where you cant just ‘go’! As temping as it is to pop a nappy back on, it’ll just confuse them, so if you can resist, do. You can get car seat liners to cover your child’s car seat to save to momentous task of taking apart the car seat to wash the covers. They’re also great for the buggy, plane and train too!
Whilst potty training, it may be tempting to cut back on the fluids. However, this isn’t the case. Really encourage lots of drinking throughout the day. Once they’ve had a good drink, wait 15-20 minutes and pop them on the loo or potty. Once they’ve got the hang of it, wait 25-30 minutes and gradually elongate it. Get them used to the feeling of having to ‘go’ and let them tell you. An odd reminder won’t go a miss, but remember they’ll need to learn to do this without you.
Try and make this process as fun as you can. Some sort of visual reward, whether it’s a sticker chart with all their favourite cartoon characters, or a jar filled with pasta, pompoms or marbles, they’ll know they’re one step closer to reaching that end ‘goal’. Perhaps an incentive when they’ve completed their sticker chart or jar is to go on a fun day out, a new book or a movie afternoon! Try and go a little OTT with the praise, this is huge deal for them so make it as positive as you can, no negative Nancy’s please!
Trying to crack the nights? This may happen in one fell swoop, it may take a bit longer for their bodies to adjust. Some children can’t go through the night for a few years after they’ve cracked potty training, so don’t put pressure on yourself or them for this. Save a few yogurt pots, and get your little one to wee in it before bed, and first thing in the morning. If the morning wee is darker, this will mean it’s more concentrated, and therefore they may be ready to be dry at night. Try to avoid doing a ‘dream wee’ if you can, as it’ll only get their body used to this and they won’t be able to hold throughout the night for longer periods of time, it’ll only confuse the messaged between their brain and their bladder.
Layer their beds up like pass the parcel, but this time with waterproof sheets and a bottom sheet. If they have an accident in the night, this will save you those precious minutes of hard earned sleep. You can quickly strip back the bed and low and behold…fresh new sheets!
Tips and Tricks
You say jump, they say how high? Make sure your child can jump, with both feet off the ground. If they can’t, this may indicate to you that they are not physically ready or able to hold ‘it’ in.
Make it fun. Yes…fun! Add a little blue food colouring to the loo water, and when they wee it will magically turn green. Trust me, if you’re 2, THIS IS EXCITING!
Turn on the water works. Turn on the taps or play some water sounds on Spotify just to help them release their bladder.
For boys who have mastered holding it and are ready for the next stage, pop a ping pong ball in the loo or a sticker at the back of the loo. This will give them something to aim at…!