Month: October 2019

3-Day Potty Training | Should You Try It?

3-Day Potty Training | Should You Try It?

woman and child

3-Day Potty Training

In a world of fast food and instant gratification, the prospect of potty training your child in just three days is appealing to many parents. But is it something you should subject your child to?

Is 3-Day potty training the right method for your child?

Although it may be all the rage these days,  the question is, is it the right method for you and your child. It may or may not be a high pressure, high stress, situation for both parent and child. A lot will depend on the personality of parent and child. It is in essence three solid days of non-stop potty training, where you are taking your child to the potty every 15 minutes of their waking day, and several times at night too.

While the process may work for some children, it may not be right for all.  You be the judge.

The 3-Day potty training process

While there may be slight variations between different 3-day potty training programs, they all follow the same basic procedures.

Step 1. Make sure that your child is ready for potty training

The signs you look for are the same you would be looking for regardless of what potty training method you decide to use.

First of all, is the child old enough? Parents who try to rush the process and begin too early will only be making extra work for themselves. Trying to potty train a child too early can backfire and prolong the time required to potty train the child. Some children may be ready as early as 18 months, but most will not be ready for potty training until they are 2 to 3 years old.

Advocates of the three-day method suggest that you will have the greatest chance at success if you potty them between the age of 18 to 30 months. It is thought that waiting longer will make it more difficult to use the three-day method on your child. But for some children even 30 months may be too early to begin potty training.

Step 2. Schedule a time when you have three full uninterrupted days to do the potty training

A long holiday weekend is generally thought to be the ideal time to do the three-day potty training. Remember, this will be an all day, everyday process. You will have no time for anything else. Not for cooking, not for washing, not for running of errands, no time for texting or talking of the phone, no time for visitors, no time for anything that is not potty training. For the next three days you will live, eat, breath potty training.

You will be home and you will stay home with your child for the whole three days. For those three days potty training will be your life, so choose the time you are going to do this carefully.

If you cannot set aside the time for this, it may not be the method for you.

Step 3. Get everything you are going to need ready

For three days potty training is going to be your life, so prepare everything else in advance.

You are not going to have time to cook meals, so prepare your meals beforehand. For some that may mean making sure you have a working can opener and microwave oven. Quick and easy is what you want. Forget about pretty.

You are not going to have time to do laundry. Especially if you do not own a washer/dryer. So, make sure you are caught up on your laundry for the next three days. For your child this may mean having dozens of extra pairs of underwear available. Have way more on hand than you think you would ever need.

Clear your calendar for those 3 days. You will not have time to go anywhere or do anything except potty train your child. No doctors appointments, no ball games, no grocery shopping, nothing. For those three days you will be very strictly a stay at home parent.

Stock up on drinks. Know what they like and get lots of it. Make drinking fun by using colorful and fun shaped straws. You want them to drink a lot so that they will have to pee often. That is part of the 3-day potty training process. Drink, drink, drink, pee, pee, pee all day long and into the night. Just keep in mind that nighttime potty training will take a lot longer than 3 days. There is no such thing as a 3-day nighttime potty training program.

Stock up on potty training rewards. This may take the form of a sticker chart, candy, a special toy, etc. The reward is anything that may motivate your child to successfully use the potty. The reward, whatever it is, should be used strictly for potty training success. The child should not learn that they can receive it any other way.

Often simple praise works just as good if not better than other kinds of rewards. Just letting them know you are proud of them is a reward in itself.

Step 4. Prepare your child for the ordeal they are about to face

Allow the child to see and play with the potty they will be using. Let them get used to it. Teach them what it is for. Explain to them in simple language what you will be expecting of them.

Do not spring all this on them as a big surprise. Try to make it something desirable in their minds. Tell them that they are a big boy or girl now. Boost their self-esteem. In other words, try to de-stress the 3-day potty training process for your child as much as possible before you begin.

Step 5. Start the 3-day potty training party

It is all up to you. You will need to get up, dressed and ready in the morning before the child does. Some 3-day advocates say to use underwear, others to dress the child with only a shirt, leaving the bottom bare. Just be aware, whether you use underwear or the bottomless method, accidents will happen, and you will need to be prepared to deal with the mess.

And you will have to be quick. You will have to feed and cloth yourself, feed your family and still get the child to the potty at least once every 15 minutes. Some advocate taking the child to the potty once very 5 minutes initially, and gradually working up to 10 then 15 then 20 minute intervals.

Chances are good that both you and your child’s nerves are going to be frazzled by days end. Or not. Again that will depend on you and your child’s personality. But you as the parent must stay cool and calm throughout.

Does the 3-Day method actually work?

Yes, it does work, But the 3-day method is not backed by science. It is not backed by the medical community.

Nighttime Potty Training | Can it be Done?

Nighttime Potty Training | Can it be Done?

sleeping child

Nighttime Potty Training

OK, so your child is potty trained, at least for the daytime hours. But what about at night as the child sleeps? Chances are that your potty trained child is still wetting their bed at night. But that is normal. Nighttime bladder control is very different from daytime bladder control.

Is nighttime potty training possible?

Now the question is, is nighttime potty training possible, or do you just have to let nature take its course.

The bad news is that there is not much you can do about it. The problem is that while the child has matured enough physically to control their bladder during their waking hours, they may still be too immature to have that control while sleeping.

Simply put, although they may have a full bladder that full bladder sensation, which would send them scurrying to the potty during waking hours, is not enough to wake them up at this stage in their development. Also, they simply cannot hold their pee for the 8 to 10 hours they may be asleep at night. They are just not physically mature enough to do that. And no amount of shaming, scolding or punishing will change that.

Negative responses on your part to your child’s bed-wetting may only make the problem worse and can actually cause the child to have more nighttime accidents. Not to mention the damage it will do to your child’s self-esteem. Remember, this is something they have no control over. They cannot help it.

Another thing you need to remember, if you are inclined to scold, shame or punish your child for bed-wetting is that stress in a child can cause regression of their day time potty training. So, stay calm, stay cool, and just know that this is simple part of raising a child.

A few facts about bed-wetting

Generally, a child does not mature physically enough to stop bed-wetting until they are somewhere between 3 to 7 years of age. Most, about 80 to 90 percent, will be able to keep dry overnight by the ages of 5 or 6. The rest sometime between the ages of 6 and 7. This is considered to be normal, so do not worry if your 7 year old child is still wetting the bed

It also makes a difference if the child is a boy or a girl. For some reason girls develop nighttime bladder control sooner than boys. Consequently, about 70 percent of bed wetter’s are boys and only 30 percent girls.

Is there anything you can do about bed-wetting?

Although nighttime potty training is not possible, that does not mean that there is nothing you can do make the situation better.

1. There are a number of absorbent, washable mattress pads available to protect the mattress. This is a must have.

2. Instead of the child sleeping in underpants, have them go to bed wearing Pull-Ups instead.

3. Make sure your child goes potty just before going to bed. This may not stop the bed-wetting, but it may cut down on its frequency. Statically most bed-wetting occurs during the first few hours of sleep.

4. Do not try to keep your child from drinking after supper. First of all, your child needs to stay hydrated. Second, withholding liquids in the evening before bedtime does not really work in preventing bed-wetting.

5. Give your child an overnight wake up call or two. You can buy alarms designed just for this purpose. A timely wake up at night could prevent a bed-wetting that night.

6. If your child tends to sleep through alarms, consider waking the child up yourself a couple times each night. Of course, the downside is that you will have to wake up and get up a couple time a night too. Oh well, nothing’s perfect.

7. Use a wetness detecting alarm. These devices are designed to go off when they detect wetness, thus waking the child as they are beginning to pee. The idea behind them is to condition the child to wake up when their body senses the need to pee. Of course, in an imperfect world it does not always work out that way. But it may be worth a try.

8. Chill out. Dealing with a bed-wetting child is just a normal part of being a parent. There is nothing you can do about it, so just go with the flow. Even after a child has matured to the point that they can stay dry overnight, accidents will still happen. So, keep the waterproof/absorbent mattress covers and pads on the bed for a while, and keep a few spare dry pajamas available for the child to change into for when an accident does happen.

Potty Training Regression | What Can You Do About It?

Potty Training Regression | What Can You Do About It?

child face

Potty Training Regression

So, your child has been potty trained, and all is going well until suddenly the child starts having more than the occasional accidents that might be expected of a newly potty trained child.

Do not panic, do not overreact

First do not panic. Potty regression is not uncommon, it is normal, and this can be fixed.

Even though you may be somewhat disappointed and frustrated try not to show it. Above all, do not scold or yell at the child. Doing so can cause potty anxiety in your child which can actually lead to more problems.

And do not threaten to punish the child for having accidents. Fear of punishment can not only make the problem worse but can prolong the recovery process.

Try to stay calm and stay positive when dealing with your child. Your calm and positive attitude will go a long way in helping your child overcome their potty regression. It will inspire in them confidence and a desire to do better next time.

Why the potty regression is happening?

What is causing your child to regress in their potty training? There are several possible reasons. Your job as a parent is to try to figure out why this is happening.

One common cause is that the child was potty trained too early. They were not really ready for it yet. How can you tell if this is the case?

If you notice that your child in addition to having frequent accident also does not seem to care that they have had the accident for show any desire to go to the potty, then they probably have not really been potty trained.

If this is the case, you may just want to wait until they show signs of being ready to be potty trained. Trying to potty train a child too quick or too early can backfire on you and actually prolong the process.

If on the other hand you notice that your child wants to go to the potty but for one reason or another just isn’t making it in time, then they probably are potty trained. At this point your task is to find some way to get them back on track.

Try to find out what it is that is preventing them from making it to the potty in time. Are they, for example, so engrossed in some activity, having so much fun doing something, that they do not want to take the time to make a run to the potty?

Sometimes all a child needs are a few simple reminders to go potty. Putting them back on a potty schedule again can help reestablish the habit of going potty. Make sure they go potty when they wake up in the morning, after every meal, and before going to bed at night, and at regular intervals between times.

Perhaps there is a medical reason. Simple constipation is a common reason for potty training regression in a child. It is not uncommon for a child to avoid going to the potty if bowel movements are difficult and they have to strain to go. The solution may be as simple as making sure the child drinks plenty of water and has a diet with plenty of fiber.

If the child is still resistant to going on the potty because of their constipation, try to make going potty fun again with games or puzzles or books.

Other possible causes of potty regression in a potty trained child are major changes or stressful situations in a child’s life. Are you traveling? Are you in the process of moving to a new home? Is the child going to a new school? Is there a new sibling in the family? Have you lost a family pet recently?

In other words, is something going on that might cause undue stress or anxiety in the child. These are common reasons for potty regression. If this is the case the child’s potty habits should return to normal once things settle down. In the meantime, until things settle down, try to reassure and encourage your child. Let your child know that they are not in trouble for having an accident.

Give potty rewards a try again

If you successfully used a reward system when you were potty training your child, you might consider trying that again. Simple incentives such as a sticker chart, a special treat or toy that they enjoy can help reestablish the potty habit. Simple rewards work best, and the best rewards are words of encouragement and praise.

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