The transition from diapers to underwear is a big step for toddlers. It marks the milestone between infancy and childhood that's sometimes quite difficult for all concerned. It can be a frustrating time for parents as well as toddlers, but it doesn't have to be. There are potty training methods and tips that can make the transition from diapers to underwear pleasant and rewarding.
Potty training is something many parents dread. It takes work and a lot of persistence, and it's not always easy. With the continuing advancement in the quality of diapers and the ever-increasing sizes available, it's no wonder why parents put off potty training. It's much easier to change diapers than to begin the trials and tribulations of potty training, but it's an undertaking that eventually requires time and attention.
Signs of Readiness
Toddlers who are ready for potty training exhibit certain signs of readiness. These signs of readiness indicate the maturity and interest required for success. Look for signs that show your toddler is ready for this important step, and when you toddler is ready, you're sure to recognize the following clues.
A toddler requesting a diaper change is well aware of the irritation caused by a wet or dirty diaper. If your toddler is capable of coming to you to ask for a diaper change, or going as far as to bring a diaper to you, they are capable of letting you know when they need to use the toilet. This is a major signal of motivation, and it shouldn't be ignored. Take this cue as a significant sign of potty training readiness.
Toddlers ready for potty training begin to show interest in what mom, dad, and siblings are doing in the bathroom, and they want to do the same. Take advantage of this natural curiosity and the desire to learn, and begin potty training your toddler. Not only will you save money, but in the long run, you'll also save time and effort.
Don't expect your toddler to come to you when it's time to use the toilet. It's necessary to take a toddler to the toilet at regular intervals. Until your toddler realizes what is expected, you really should take a bathroom break every half hour to forty-five minutes, especially after meals. The first time your toddler uses the toilet, he or she will finally realize what the fuss is all about.
Potty Seat or Chair?
Sitting on a potty seat isn't nearly as frightening as sitting on an adult-size toilet seat, and a potty seat is a good option for toddlers who exhibit a fear of potty training. Although it isn't as sanitary, a toddler-size toilet is a great choice for many parents and toddlers. Cleaning and sanitizing a potty chair is still a preferable alternative to buying and changing expensive diapers.
Potty seats have greatly improved over the years. Gone are the hard plastic seats of yesteryear. Now you'll find colorful padded potty seats with handles. They fit over standard-size toilets, and they are relatively inexpensive. These small toilet seats are comfortable, and they're just the right size for toddlers.
Disposable underwear is a wonderful tool for potty training. Disposable underwear looks like regular underwear, but it offers all of the benefits of diapers. They can be ripped along the sides for ease in changing, and many have wetness indicators designed to encourage toddlers to stay dry.
Disposable underwear works for some, but not for others. Besides being more expensive, they're really no different than diapers. Wetness is pulled away from the skin, and since discomfort is minimal, they aren't always helpful. Even still, disposable underwear is worth a try. With their colorful pictures and designs, many toddlers consider them real underwear, and they don't want to ruin them.
Those who find disposable underwear no different than diapers should consider trying the real thing. Although this is a messy alternative, cloth underwear that becomes wet or dirty is very uncomfortable. It might take a few accidents before your toddler realizes the benefit and importance of using the toilet.
Take your toddler shopping for big girl or big boy underwear. Allow your toddler to pick out a favorite design. Remind your toddler that wetting or soiling the underwear will make it dirty, and big girls and boys use the potty. This alone could be the incentive your toddler needs to keep him or her clean and dry.
Every time your toddler uses the toilet successfully, make a big deal of the accomplishment. Clap your hands with enthusiasm, and show significant joy. Praising your toddler will make him or her realize that using the toilet is a wonderful achievement. Toddlers love excitement and praise, and chances are your toddler will want to see this positive response again and again.
There's nothing wrong with a little potty training bribery. Everyone loves to receive a tangible reward for a job well done, and incentives can be a great help for parents of toddlers.
Buy your toddler several new books, and only allow your child to look at the new books while using the toilet. Read the books, or show your toddler the pictures while waiting. Make potty training time a time for reading, sharing, fun, and learning, and your toddler will want to use the toilet.
Consider buying several small prizes to reward your toddler with after successfully using the toilet. Wrap the prizes, and place them in a basket within sight but out of reach. This is a great way to encourage your toddler to do what's expected. He or she will earn a reward, and you'll be one step closer to fully potty training your growing child.
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