The Importance of Timing in Toilet Training

clock to keep potty training schedule on time Timing is important for success in toilet training because the entire team has to be ready to embark on this milestone process. This team consists of the child, the parents and any childcare providers. The right time to start toilet training depends on your child’s readiness, the training methods, and your childcare needs. Is your child ready to drop their diapers and sit on the toilet? Your child will tell you in several subtle ways.

Timing Hints

Your child will give you toilet training hints by asking to wear big kids underwear, requesting to use the toilet, or imitating your toileting actions. You can also watch your child to see if he or she can perform the necessary actions, like pulling up and removing the underwear, sitting and getting up from the toilet, obeying your instructions, and letting you know when the need to use the toilet arises. The earliest sign that your child is ready is going through a night without getting wet.

Starting Time

Timing is a key element in the outcome of toilet training. Medical experts recommend starting at the age of 18 months, but instruct parents to wait until the child is ready. There are some benefits to early toilet training. The earlier you start, the earlier the child becomes trained. Research has shown that children who start wearing underwear early have fewer accidents and are more continent than those who start later. A delay in toilet training for a child who is ready may also be harmful in the long term. Toilet training a child who is older than 32 months increases the risk of incontinence. And for parents, early training means an early departure from the world of never-ending diaper changes.

Timing and Daycare

Timing is important for children who attend daycare. An early start is beneficial if you plan to send your child to daycare, because you do not have to worry about diaper changes in daycare facilities and the associated problems. You will have more options for daycare and spend less on diapers with an early start. Toilet training can also occur whilst your child attends daycare. All of your childcare providers should know about your plans for toilet training. It is important for your child to receive consistent toilet training messages from all of their caretakers.

Timing and Toilet Training Methods

Timing is important when selecting a toilet training strategy. The most common toilet training methods will have different starting age requirements. Azrin and Foxx, the developers of the intensive toilet training method, require children to be older than 20 months to begin training. This method is ideal if you want to train your child in less than a day. Another toilet training option is the more gradual, child-oriented method. Unlike intensive training, you can start this method at the earlier age of 18 months.

Consistency is Key

Plan toilet training around a window of opportunity to make sure that you can be consistent in the training. Your child may be ready, but do you have the time to invest in the process? Disruptions in your schedule from moving, house guests, or the birth of another child can cause stress and create challenges for both you and your child. Routine and regular schedules are crucial for successful toilet training. Being inconsistent gives your child the wrong message and makes him or her more likely to resist the training.

Timing your child’s toilet training can be a major factor in your daycare options and your choice of a toilet training method. Your child will give you hints about readiness. Seize the moment and start toilet training if you and your child are ready to transition from the world of diapers to underwear.

Additional Potty Training Resources:

Potty Training Secrets

6 Ways Timing is Everything in Toilet Training 

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