Toilet Training in Children

Toilet training is the process by which the child gains control of urine and stool both during sleep and wakefulness, understands that the toilet is coming without any outside help, and is able to meet this need on his own. Toilet training given to children has an important place in their psychological development and usually starts between the ages of 1-3. However, it should not be forgotten that every child is unique. For this reason, an exact age period cannot be given for every child, the age at which they are ready for toilet training may vary from child to child. There are some clues that indicate that children are ready for toilet training. We can list some of them as follows:

  • Keeping the diaper dry for at least 2 hours and reducing the amount of daily bedwetting

  • Discomfort when urinating or defecating in the diaper

  • Ability to explain the need to go to the toilet verbally or with some behavioral patterns

  • Gaining movement skills such as walking, sitting, bending

  • Gaining the ability to imitate their parents

  • Ability to follow and implement simple instructions given to them

Gaining the ability to go to the toilet on their own is seen as the first step to independence for children. This skill is the first acquisition that teaches the child that he or she can independently manage the responsibilities that must be fulfilled in daily life. Because the child’s muscles are now developed enough to control them.

If your kids aren’t ready, don’t put pressure on them!

Toilet training can be more difficult compared to other tasks that the child needs to learn. During this education, both parents and children may have much more difficulty, and may pave the way for psychological problems such as failure, loss of autonomy and authority problems. The biggest factor in the emergence of these problems; Before children are ready for toilet training, parents compare their children with other children and put expectations on them and force their children to acquire this skill. Here are some examples of these behaviors:

Behaviors such as ignoring toilet training and leaving the child in feces and urine for a long time, displaying punitive approaches towards toilet training, blaming the child when it is difficult during training, and putting pressure on the child to gain the habit of going to the toilet can lead to psychological problems.

Incorrect attitudes and behaviors applied during toilet training can turn this process into a nightmare. If all your attention is only on toilet training while giving your children this habit, this behavior may also put pressure on the child. These pressures can cause many problems such as keeping the poop inside the child, removing the poop on any place other than the toilet, such as the sofa or carpet on purpose, urinary retention, constipation, urinary incontinence. These problems can become permanent.

Here are some recommendations for parents and children to get through this process positively:

  • The most important rule to pay attention to is to complete this education without punishing children, without shouting at them, without getting angry, without putting pressure on them, without even looking at the child to humiliate them. The process should be managed entirely through positive attitudes and the child should be guided by praise.

  • It is possible for your child to make it fun for them, while giving them the habit of going to the toilet. You can create behavior charts for your child and draw the sun when it’s dry and a rainy cloud when it’s wet. The child will be happy to see that the number of sun pictures on the table has increased.

  • When your child poops, he may think that he has lost a part of his body and be afraid. Introducing the child to the toilet before toilet training, showing poop if necessary, and explaining in advance that there is nothing to be afraid of can help the child relax before training.

  • When the toilet seems too big to children, they may fear that the toilet will swallow them. In order to eliminate this possibility from the beginning, you can place a stool in front of the toilet at a height that the child can easily reach. This way, your child will feel safe.

  • If your child develops an initial fear of the toilet, you can sit on the potty. As time goes on, you can gradually make the child ready for toilet training so that it will not be difficult.

  • From the moment the decision to start toilet training is taken, a diaper should not be tied under the child during the day, it is okay to tie it while sleeping at night. Not having a diaper while awake will direct the child to the toilet and increase his motivation to go to the toilet. It will also protect you from displaying inconsistent behavior towards your child.

  • Your child may forget to tell him to go to the toilet because he hasn’t gained the need to go to the toilet at first. For this reason, it would be beneficial to take your child to the toilet every 1-1.5 hours.

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