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Virtual Pediatric Hospital: CQQA: Toilet Training: A Guide for Parents

Pediatrics Common Questions, Quick Answers

Toilet Training: A Guide for Parents

Donna D'Alessandro, M.D.
Lindsay Huth, B.A.
Peer Review Status: Internally Reviewed
Creation Date: April 2002
Last Revision Date: April 2002


Common Questions, Quick Answers

What is toilet training?

When is my child ready?

There is no set age to begin training. Each child is ready at a different time. Between 18 months and 24 months, your child might start to show signs that she is ready. Children are sometimes not ready until 30 months or older. Signs include:
Your child must also be emotionally ready. If she resists being trained, do not force her. She will become ready with time. The following situations can make training more difficult:
Do not force your child to train before she is ready. This can make your child feel bad and training may take longer. It can also lead to long-term problems with bowel movements.

How do I toilet train my child?
Decide what words to use. Introduce your child to the potty-chair. Help her notice signs that she has to go to the bathroom. Take practice trips to the potty. Praise your child for each small success.

Decide what words to use
Introduce your child to the potty-chair
Help her notice signs that she has to go to the bathroom
Take practice trips to the bathroom

Give your child praise for each small success. Use small rewards, such as kind words, smiles, hugs, stickers, or favorite snacks. Avoid punishment. This can make your child feel bad and may make training last longer.

How long should it take?

What if it's not working?

What are some helpful tips?

When can she wear training pants?

When should I call the doctor?

Quick Answers

References

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