Potty Train: What Works

August 4, 2009

Waiting till your child is ready

There’s no magic age for being ready to start learning to use the potty. Most toddlers develop the necessary physical and mental skills between 18 and 24 months, while some kids aren’t there until closer to age 3 or even 4. Keep an eye out for physical, cognitive, and behavioral signs that your toddler might be ready to give it a try.

If your toddler is facing changes such as a new school, a new sibling, or travel, you may want to wait till the seas are calmer before taking the plunge.

Once you do start, if you’ve been trying for three months without success, that’s a sign your toddler’s not ready. Wait a few weeks — or until you see signs that the time is right — and try again.

Making a plan

Before you even buy your toddler a potty seat, it’s important to have a plan for the training process itself. Decide when and how you want to start, how to handle accidents, when to back off, and so on.

At the same time, prepare to be flexible. There’s no way to know how your child will respond to potty training attempts or what techniques will work best. Keep in mind that as with most developmental milestones, success doesn’t necessarily happen in a linear fashion — your toddler may make initial progress only to regress at one or more points along the way.

Discuss your plan with your child’s pediatrician and sitter or daycare provider. They’ll probably have plenty of experience and advice to share. Once you’ve decided on a strategy, be sure you and everyone else who takes care of your child sticks to it — barring unexpected setbacks and other potty training challenges, of course.


Taking it slow

Mastering the various steps of potty training can take a long time. Yes, some children will have it nailed in just a few days, but most need weeks or even months, especially when they’re working on staying dry at night.

Don’t push your toddler (or let others push him) to get through potty training faster than he’s ready to. Let him take his time and get used to this new, multipart process. He’ll move from one stage to the next at his own speed. Of course, it’s perfectly all right to try to motivate with gentle reminders and encouragement. If he balks, though, ease up.


Praising your child

Throughout potty training, your toddler will respond to positive reinforcement. Whenever he moves on to a new step or tries to use his potty (even when he doesn’t quite succeed), tell him he’s doing well and that you’re proud of him. Compliment him now and then on his dry underpants or diaper. But be careful not to go overboard: Too much praise might make him nervous and afraid to fail, which can lead to more accidents and setbacks.

Accepting that there will be accidents

It’s likely your toddler will have numerous accidents before being completely potty-trained. Don’t get angry or punish him. After all, it’s only recently that his nervous system has matured enough for him to perceive the sensation of a full bladder or rectum and that his muscles have developed sufficiently to allow him to hold in his urine and stool — and that’s if he’s on the early end of the developmental spectrum. He’ll get the hang of the process in due time. When your toddler has an accident, calmly clean it up and suggest (sweetly) that next time he try using his potty instead.


How do you make your bathroom child-friendly?

You can do a lot to help your child approach toilet training so that it’s comfortable for you both. Two things, in particular, will make the process less intimidating: a child-friendly seat or potty chair, and books that explain using the bathroom from a child’s point of view.

Potty seats

Toilets are scary for many young children. If your child wants nothing to do with the big toilet, give him a potty chair of his own to help him feel in control.

On the other hand, some kids are intrigued by the toilet. If that’s the case, all you might need is a padded seat with a narrow opening that you attach to your toilet to make it more comfortable. Choose a child’s seat with handles that fits over the toilet bowl so your child feels completely secure.

Some seats even have water-filled cushions or play music when your child uses them. Others have steps to make it easier to reach the toilet – and later convert to a step stool that gives kids a welcome boost for tooth brushing and hand-washing. Tiny floating markers to aim at can encourage boys to use the toilet.

Age range: You’ll want to buy a potty chair when your child is about 18 months old, and put it in the bathroom so she can get used to it long before she’s ready to try it. Most kids won’t use the potty chair or seat longer than a year – it just eases the transition to the big toilet.

Bottom line: Prices range from RM20 to RM150 for a traditional wooden potty or a high-tech plastic potty. Soft seats to cushion big toilets run RM20 to RM70.


Potty accessories

Parents who’ve gone through toilet training say these two things help most in convincing youngsters to leave diapers behind: 1) an older sibling and 2) a book that makes the potty seem fun. If there’s no older sibling, choose a potty book your child will love. Instructive videos for parents can also be helpful.

Age range: Again, you’ll be ahead of the game if your child is familiar with the idea of toilet training before she’s ready to try. Start reading potty books at 18 or 20 months to give her lots of time to adjust to the concept.

Bottom line: Books and videos cost between RM15 and RM30– pretty reasonable when you consider that they’ll make toilet training go more smoothly

What are Training Pants?

August 4, 2009

Training pants help in potty training your child. Training pants are:

  • NOT diapers; they are designed to aid in the potty training process
  • great for containing leaks, but don’t mask the wetness
  • designed for child who are ready to start heading for the potty, such as the ability to:
    • Follow simple instruction
    • Understand words about the toileting process
    • Control the muscles responsible for elimination
    • Express a need to go verbally
    • Keep the diaper dry for 2 hours or more
    • Get to the potty/ toilet, sit on it and then get off the potty
    • Pull down the diapers, training pants or underpants


Kebanyakan ibu bapa tidak pasti bilakah waktu yang sesuai untuk memulakan latihan ke tandas untuk anak mereka. Latihan ini akan membolehkan kanak-kanak untuk ke tandas apabila mereka ingin membuang air kecil atau besar. Secara umumnya, latihan ini sesuai dimulakan apabila anak anda dapat mengawal otot dubur dan pundi kencingnya. Ia biasanya dicapai apabila berusia 18 hingga 36 bulan.

Memperkenalkan Potty

Sediakan sebuah potty di dalam bilik air. Pastikan si kecil telah melihatnya beberapa bulan sebelum memulakan latihan ke tandas secara rutin supaya si kecil akan membiasakan diri duduk di atasnya dan cuba untuk menggunakannya. Biarkan si kecil duduk di atasnya sebelum mandi atau selepas anda menanggalkan lampinnya. Pada masa ini, anak anda mungkin membuang air di situ ataupun dia hanya menggap potty tersebut sebagai mainannya. Walaubagaimanapun, ini hanyalah salah satu alternative kerana ada kanak-kanak yang terus belajar menggunakan tandas sebenar.

Masa Sudah Tiba?

Pastikan yang anak anda telah menunjukkan tanda yang dia mungkin sudah bersedia untuk ke tandas iaitu:

ü Adakah dia sering menanggalkan lampin atau tidak selesa memakai lampin?
ü Adakah dia dapat duduk di atas potty/ tandas dan dapat berdiri semula dengan mudah?
ü Adakah dia tahu bila dia ingin membuang air kecil atau besar dan memberitahu anda?
ü Adakah dia sedar yang dia telah membuang air kecil atau besar dan memberitahu anda?

Semua persoalan ini memudahkan anda mengetahui masa yang sesuai untuk anda memulakan latihan ke tandas.

Uji Penerimaannya

Sentiasa mengingatkan dan bertanya kepada anak anda sama ada dia ingin menggunakan potty/ membuang air atau tidak. Jika dia katakan ‘ya’, barulah anda dudukkannya di atas potty, jika tidak, jangan memaksa anak anda. Ada juga si kecil yang pada mulanya mengatakan tidak mahu, tetapi beberapa minit kemudian barulah dia sedar yang dia ingin membuang air. Ini juga ada baiknya kerana ia petanda bahawa anak anda tidak bergantung kepada anda untuk memberitahunya.

Sekali sekala sekiranya se kecil terlupa memberitahu anda, jangan terus memarahinya, sebaliknya secara lembut ingatkan kepadanya tentang potty itu. Beri pujian dan ciuman jika dia Berjaya melakukannya.

Atur Rutin Harian

Untuk pertama kali, biarkan anak anda bermain tanpa memakai lampin pada satu jangka masa. Sebaiknya, lakukan pada hujung minggu iaitu sewaktu anda berkelapangan dan tidak sibuk dengan urusan lain. Anda boleh membawanya ke tandas pada tempoh-tempoh tertentu, contohnya setiap 1 jam dan memintanya membuang air. Biarkan seketika contihnya sehingga 10 minit. Jika dia membuang air, pastikan dia tidak bermain dengan najisnya dan katakan ianya kotor dan perlu dicuci dengan cara yang betul. Latih juga anak anda untuk membasuh tangan dan kaki sebelum keluar dari tandas.

Dari Potty ke Tandas Sebenar

Pada satu peringkat, se kecil mula bersedia untuk menggunakan tandas sebenar. Oleh itu, pastikan anda menyediakan bangku untuk dia berpijak.Anda boleh belikan pelapik tandas untuk kanak-kanak agar anak anda dapat duduk dengan selesa di atas mangkuk tandas. Bantu anak anda membasuh punngungnya sehingga dia bersedia untuk melakukannya sendiri.


– Jangan lupa beri galakan dan pujian setiap kali dia berjaya melakukannya
– Sediakan potty yang menarik perhatiannay dan jadikan ia sebagai permainan yang menyeronokkan
– Pakaikan si kecil pakaian yang mudah ditanggalkan apabila dia ingin ke tandas