4 Common Potty Training Mistakes Parents Should Avoid

4 Common Potty Training Mistakes Parents Should Avoid

Don't make potty training harder than it needs to be! Learn which mistakes to avoid and how!

Potty training is often regarded as one of the most difficult aspects of the early years of parenting. While potty training a toddler will never be as simple as 1, 2, 3, you may be making your life more difficult by committing one of these common potty training mistakes.

Check out this resourceful list, see if you’re approaching potty training the wrong way and learn how to make your life easier:

1. Make the switch

4 Common Potty Training Mistakes Parents Should Avoid

Image source: iStock

During this interesting time in a kid’s development, you’ll have mornings in which your toddler has a wet diaper; it’s a common situation given the circumstance. Alternatively, you’ll have mornings in which your toddlers’ diaper is dry and unsoiled. Many parents claim that effective potty training comes from switching your child to “big kid” underwear as soon as they start waking up dry on a consistent basis.

The mistake comes when parents don’t want to deal with the risk of kids wetting the bed and extending the period in which kids wear diapers instead of underwear. This causes some confusion in the overall potty training process as kids won’t be able to understand why they should use the toilet at night.


2. Don’t rush into things

One of the most common mistakes parents make is jumping into potty training too soon in their kids’ development. Many parents suggest that it’s wise to analyse the child’s overall development before introducing potty training.

Babycenter suggests tracking the following:

Physical signs: 

  • coordination
  • amount of urine at one time
  • regular bowel-movements at predictable times
  • consistent dry nights/naps
4 Common Potty Training Mistakes Parents Should Avoid

Image source: iStock

Behavioural signs:

  • Can sit down quietly in one position for two to five minutes
  • Can pull his pants up and down
  • Dislikes the feeling of wearing a wet or dirty diaper
  • Shows interest in others’ bathroom habits (wants to watch you go to the bathroom or wear underwear)
  • Gives a physical or verbal sign when he’s having a bowel movement such as grunting, squatting, or telling you
  • Demonstrates a desire for independence
  • Takes pride in his accomplishments
  • Isn’t resistant to learning to use the toilet
  • Is in a generally cooperative stage, not a negative or contrary one

Cognitive signs: 

  • Understands the physical signals that mean he has to go and can tell you before it happens or even hold it until he has time to get to the potty.
  • Can follow simple instructions, such as “go get the toy.”
  • Understands the value of putting things where they belong.
  • Has words for urine and stool.

If your child seems to meet most of these developmental qualifications, it might be the perfect time to start potty training. Otherwise, you may be making a common potty training mistake!


3. Be mentally prepared

4 Common Potty Training Mistakes Parents Should Avoid

Image source: iStock

Believe it or not, all of the workload and pressure is on the kids doesn’t solely fall on your child. You should be mentally prepared for the challenging task at hand also! You’ll have to work hard to establish consistency and build proper toilet using habits for your kids. If you’re not ready to take on the challenge, don’t force the issue.

Some parents claim to have started the task, but then didn’t take the task seriously enough and their children reverted back to diapers for a while longer. Obviously, this can be confusing to a child and can hinder their development and the potty training process as a whole.

Make sure you’re ready to take on the challenge before forcing your kids into the switch.


4. Use training pants…sparingly

Don’t rely on training pants too much, or for too long. However, these useful pair of trousers can really help in dealing with public incidents. While they’re definitely practical and useful for your kids in the early stages, parents sometimes make the mistake of letting kids continue to wear them.

The problem is that with underwear, kids are pretty aware that an incident has occurred and they’ll be more likely to correct the problem in the future. If they’re constantly leaving the house wearing training pants, they may become complacent and prolong the inevitable process of potty training.

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