Potty Training Tips

Bare feet hanging from a toiletNo matter how ready you are to kiss those endless diaper changes goodbye, every child learns to use the potty at their own pace and in their own time. It’s most important not to rush your little one. If they aren’t ready the entire event may be much more stressful than it needs to be.

If your child can identify when they need to go to the bathroom, or they tell you when it is time for a new diaper, this is a good indicator that they might be ready (or almost ready) for potty training.

Ask yourself the following questions to determine if your child is ready for potty training:

  • Does your child follow directions well?
  • Are changings becoming more and more infrequent? Is their diaper dry for several hours at time?
  • Have they asked any questions about the toilet or have they showed interest in it?
  • Can they pull their pants up and down all by themselves?

If the answer to these questions is yes, then it’s probably an appropriate time to attempt potty training. If you begin to introduce the toilet and they resist, it’s important not to force them to go. All associations with the bathroom should be as positive as possible. You don’t want your child to avoid the bathroom, or avoid urinating or voiding, because this can be harmful.

Try not to set deadlines. This can be setting your child up for failure, because you stress and actually delay the entire process. Every child is unique and having expectations or rigidly meeting the time requirements of a program will be difficult for everyone involved. If there are setbacks or accidents, don’t focus on them. Bringing attention to accidents can actually have the reverse effect of what you want; it may reinforce the behavior, increasing the likelihood that it will happen again. Consider accidents a standard part of the process and address them as such. Have your child help with the cleanup and focus on the next opportunity for success which may only be a few short hours away!

And finally, try to pick appropriate clothing for your little one during this important time. Avoid clothes that are difficult to take off quickly or get back on. Multiple snaps or buttons and overalls should be avoided. Instead, opt for elastic waistbands. This can greatly reduce the number of “accidents” that may occur. Some experts even suggest waiting to potty train until the weather is warm to reduce the amount of layers your child will have to contend with in the bathroom.


What do you think?

Potty Training Tips

Tell us what you think!


  1. nancyk says:

    My daughter seems ready, but it’s hit or miss. She won’t tell me that she needs to use the potty, so I have to guess. I’m curious, though, if anyone has used cloth training diapers. I just read a scary article about the chemicals used in disposable diapers, and I wanted some feedback as far as how hard it is to use cloth training pants… Please let me know. I started to do some research, but there’s tons and tons of information out there. I just want some real mom’s opinions. Check out the article at: http://safemommy.org/2014/07/29/diapers-can-cause-chemical-burns/

    • Erin says:

      That article turned out to be a hoax! Some children can be allergic to some brands, though. Why use training diapers at all, though? Just buy training undies. They have a thicker crotch area for girls and front area for boys. I think Gerber makes some.

  2. yonna says:

    My daughter is 2 years old and love going to the potty when we go to the bathroom but she will not go another time.

  3. Jessica says:

    I would like some tips on potty training a child with a second floor bathroom. With my first child, the bathroom was on the same floor as all the other rooms. But I’ve since moved and this is new territory for me. I’ve asked all my friends and relatives. Nobody knows because they to live in a one story house.

    • Erin says:

      Wow, I’ve never heard of not even having a half-bath on the main floor! Maybe you could pick a weekend and fill a cooler each morning and just camp out upstairs?

  4. Caressea says:

    My 2 year old son comes to me and says “mommy I need a diaper change” or “mommy I need to go pee pee” so I will take him to the potty. He sits on it and pushes like he’s tryin to go but hardly ever does. I don’t know if he’s scared or its just a nervous thing. I’ve tried everything to see if anything would help but so far nothing has worked. I know he’s ready because he shows me the signs that he’s ready. I just hope he doesn’t start preschool and still have this problem.

  5. Destiny says:

    my daughter will scream if anybody wants to use the bathroom because it is her turn but she doesnt think about it when she is wearing a diaper. when I put her in her big girl undies she still has accidents…I know if i just dealt with the accidents it would only take a couple oof weeks for her to get it but pee all over the house…yuck! especially when she wont ell me where she peed

  6. yonna says:

    My youngest daughter when she was 11 mos old she started to pull her diaper off so we introduced her to the potty. Now she will only go at certain time and not her schedule times that we know she would normally be wet. Any suggestion?

  7. mamalue says:

    I think it was very helpful an hopefully I can start potty training my daughter

  8. Alicia says:

    still got about 6months’

  9. Lindsay says:

    My daughter likes to sit on the potty and pretend to wipe with her own piece of toilet paper.

  10. MadisonCruz says:

    not for along time but good ideas

  11. Krystal says:

    liked this article. my son will be 2 next month and he’s a pro at potty training but only if he is running around without a diaper on. as soon as that diaper is on him forget it he gets lazy lol

  12. yonna says:

    I have a 16 month old daughter we just started the potty training faze 3 months ago. My doctor told me to start when she turn around 24 months. I understand kids learn at different paces b/c my oldest who is 6 years old was potty trained by 12 months and off the bottle by 9 month old she was almost 10 months on a sippy cup. But I will use these new tips.

  13. life says:

    i never thought of asking my self question but until now thanks for the tips an help

  14. EbyMom says:

    my son takes down his shorts and removes the diaper once he is wet. I’ve started potty training with him but i think he prefers the adult toilet. when i switched over to the toilet all he does there is to flush. so most times i don’t even know when he does his duty. so now i switched back to his potty.

  15. Just started to train my 1 year old. Since she is walking and does well with simple directions we get her on her potty while her bath is being drawn, or as soon as she wakes up from a nap. She gets so happy when she accomplished peeing, but it might be awhile till we get to step number 2.

  16. neisha says:

    I potty trained my daughter in the summer time it took her no time to learn so this is a good tip

  17. ChrisS says:

    Some people says 18 months. But study says between 2-4 years old. It all depends on a child when he/she shows sign of interest.

  18. tina says:

    at what age is good to potty train

  19. sukismom says:

    These are very good tips to know when my daughter is ready


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