Toilet training, potty training, getting your child out of nappies (diapers), getting your child to stay dry throughout the night. However you phrase it toilet training is a big milestone in a child's (and parent's) life. Whether you look forward in anticipation of ridding your child of nappies, or are dreading the thought of the mess and inconvenience that comes of potty training, how you deal with making the transition from nappies to pants can make all the difference to your child; indeed, if handled incorrectly, toilet training can lead to future toilet problems for your child.
As a mother of two I have had to deal with this situation, and whilst it is not always the easiest time in raising your child, I have a few tips that may make it easier for you both, and help overcome those potty blues!
Never attempt to start potty training if you have any other big upheaval coming up in your life - moving house, having another baby, getting married, starting a new job.
Get a potty for the bathroom, and one for the living room - sometimes you child just wont be able to hold on until he gets to the bathroom!
If your child forgets or doesn't make it on time, don't make a big issue of it. The more you get stressed over mess and dirtied clothes, the more your child will become self conscious, leading to problems at a later date.
Try to make it fun. You can put something in the potty, such as Cheerios, for your little boy to aim at! They love being able to 'hit the target'.
Remind them about the toilet, frequently! At this age it is all too easy for your little one to become distracted, only realising they need the toilet when it is too late. Ask before they you out, ask them when you're at the supermarket (or anywhere else with public toilet facilities).
Always keep a spare set of clothes handy for those 'little accidents'!
Your child will be dry during the day quicker than they will during the night. Don't expect miracles.
Boys will take longer to toilet train than girls - they have to learn both standing up and sitting down.
Remember you're not alone - every other parent is going through, or will be going through the same thing as you. And if your child isn't ready then don't force them. Every child develops at a different rate; if your little one isn't quite ready just step back and give them space. You can start as many times as you like, getting the right time is the most important thing of all.