Every Tuesday, I share tips on different topics for children of each age group. These tips are based on my experiences with my children, or they are tips passed on to me from other Moms. They are in no way guaranteed to work for you or your children, but maybe they will….you don’t know unless you try!
Please feel free to share your own tips in the comments.
Diapering and Potty Training
- Cloth vs Disposable: I tried both and cloth just wasn’t for me. Don’t judge me! Whichever you choose, there are a lot of different options, from prefolds to velcro cloth diapers and no name to a variety of name brand disposables. Try different brands for the one that contains the most messes, works with your budget and is comfortable for baby.
- I have a much younger brother and 3 sons, so changing a boy is nothing new to me but I recently realized not everyone knows that you need to point the penis down when you put a little guy’s diaper on…otherwise, you get pee right up the front of the belly. You also need to have a fresh diaper ready to go when you take the old one off, because cool air makes baby boys pee…so have that diaper ready to get in place quick.
- Diaper rashes: You can avoid diaper rashes most of the time by keeping baby clean and dry. If your baby does get a diaper rash, don’t use wipes! Get a clean washcloth and clean her with warm water and a gentle soap. I found that air was the best thing for a diaper rash, so I would leave the diaper off and lay baby on a thick blanket or towel to contain any messes. Diaper cream covered with a little vaseline is effective when you need to put the diaper back on.
- Never leave the house without spare diapers, wipes and extra clothing.
- Every child is ready in their own time. If your child is staying dry for long periods of time and is showing interest in the toilet, it is probably time to give it a try.
- When my children turned two, I brought out the portable potty seat where they could see it and try it out at their own leisure. I told them what it was, but I made no motions to get them on it. They most often will start sitting on it on their own, and start getting used to the idea of using it.
- When you think your child is ready to start potty training, you first need to realize that it is actually “parent training”. You need to consistently take your child to the potty so that they don’t have accidents. I tried to make bathroom time fun by putting some childrens books in there, and with my first child I even had him help me put up pictures of things he liked at his eye level.
- Some people recommend spending a few days with your child in his/her underwear only and provide him with lots of drinks and trips to the bathroom every half hour.
- Avoid pull ups. They are just expensive diapers.
- Celebrate the successes and don’t stress about the accidents.
- Get your child to help you clean up any messes that happen from an accident. Not as punishment, but so they are taking an active role in all aspects of learning to use the toilet.
- If you have tried for a week or more and your child seems frustrated or hasn’t made any progress, take a break for a couple of weeks. She may not be ready yet and a couple of weeks may be all she needs to get ready.
- Your child will likely take longer to be dry all night than he did to get potty trained. Avoid any drinks other than water in the evenings. Make sure your child uses the bathroom before bed. Take him to the washroom before you go to bed, and make sure that’s his first stop in the morning. Using a mattress protector is a must!