Quick Facts About Potty Training

by Elizabeth Pantley

Potty training can be natural, easy, and peaceful. The first step is to know the facts.

· The perfect age to begin potty training is different for every child. Your child's best starting age could be anywhere from eighteen to thirty-two months. Pre-potty training preparation can begin when a child is as young as ten months.

· You can begin training at any age, but your child's biology, skills, and readiness will determine when he can take over his own toileting.

· Teaching your child how to use the toilet can, and should, be as natural as teaching him to build a block tower or use a spoon.

· No matter the age that toilet training begins, most children become physically capable of independent toileting between ages two and a half and four.

· It takes three to twelve months from the start of training to daytime toilet independence. The more readiness skills that a child possesses, the quicker the
process will be.

· The age that a child masters toileting has absolutely no correlation to future abilities or intelligence.

· There isn’t only one right way to potty train – any approach you use can work - if you are pleasant, positive and patient.

· Nighttime dryness is achieved only when a child's physiology supports this--you can't rush it.

· A parent's readiness to train is just as important as a child's readiness to learn.

· Potty training need not be expensive. A potty chair, a dozen pairs of training pants and a relaxed and pleasant attitude are all that you really need. Anything else is truly optional.

· Most toddlers urinate four to eight times each day, usually about every two hours or so.

· Most toddlers have one or two bowel movements each day, some have three, and others skip a day or two in between movements. In general, each child has a regular pattern.

· More than 80 percent of children experience setbacks in toilet training. This means that what we call “setbacks” are really just the usual path to mastery of toileting.

· Ninety-eight percent of children are completely daytime independent by age four.

This article is an excerpt from The No-Cry Potty Training Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Child Say Good-Bye to Diapers by Elizabeth Pantley. (McGraw-Hill, 2006)

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