Potty training means no more worrying about nappies, and this is surely something that all new parents long for! But your child shouldn’t start potty training until they’re ready.
If you start your child’s potty training too early, they may feel stressed and pressured. Also, potty training can take a while. And if your child isn’t ready, then you’ll end up wasting a lot of time on something that should wait.
So how can you tell if they’re ready?
In this post we’ll look at some of the signs that your child isn’t quite ready for potty training just yet. We’ll then look at a few signs that they might be ready.
At What Age Is A Child Ready For Potty Training?
Different babies can grow up at different rates. The age at which a child is ready for potty training can vary from child to child. Some parents start potty training from the moment their baby starts walking. Others leave it later, until their child starts preschool.
The NHS recommends that the best time to start is when your child is between 24 and 28 months old. However, they advise that there’s no perfect time for a child to start learning.
When To Start Potty Training?
The NHS also advise that you might find potty training easier in the summer, as there’ll be fewer clothes to take off, and washed clothes can dry quicker. You know your child better than anyone! So learn to spot the signs that they might be ready to start learning – and the signs that they might need a little bit more time.
4 Signs Your Child Is Not Ready For Potty Training
- Your child’s nappy is always wet. If you find your child’s nappy’s always at least a little bit damp, it means that they haven’t yet learned how to control their bladder. Babies learn to control their bowels before their bladder. But you shouldn’t start potty training until their bladder’s strong enough.
- Your child is still OK with nappies, but they’re averse to the potty. As babies get older, they can start kicking against their nappies. This is a good sign that it’s time to move on. But if your baby still seems perfectly happy in their nappy, then it might not be time for potty training just yet. Also, if you’ve shown your child the potty and they don’t seem interested in it – or worse, if they seem scared of it – then they might not be ready for potty training.
- Your child doesn’t tell you when they’ve gone. As babies develop, they can sometimes learn to tell their parents that they’ve filled their nappy and they need changing – either by pointing, shouting, or screaming. It’s not comfortable sitting in a messy nappy. But if your child isn’t telling you when they’ve gone, then they may not be ready yet for potty training. Again, not telling you suggests that they’re still OK with using nappies.
- You or your child is going through a big change. Potty training’s a big deal! You should give it all the time, energy and attention it deserves. And if you want to avoid putting your child through too much pressure at once, you should avoid mixing their potty training with any other big changes. So if they’re moving from a cot to a bed, or if your family’s moving house, it might be best to leave the potty training until you can all give it your full attention.
3 Signs Your Child is Ready for Potty Training
- Your child’s nappies are drier for longer. If your child can keep their nappy dry for up to two hours, then it’s a sign that their bladder’s getting stronger, and that they’re learning how to control it. And once they can control their bladder, they should soon be ready for potty training.
- Your child tells you when they’re filling their nappy. As we mentioned above, your child may eventually start telling you when they need changing. But some children may tell you when they’re in the process of filling their nappy. This suggests that they’re coming to understand their bowel and bladder movements, which might mean they’re ready for more independence.
- Your child starts predicting their movements. Even better, some children learn to spot the signs that they need to go, and so may start telling their parents in advance. This is a sure sign that your child’s ready for potty training. But even if they don’t tell you, you might notice that they start fidgeting when they need to go. They may even go to a quiet place so they can fill their nappy in private. Again, this suggests that they’re ready for the independence and control that potty training brings.
Don’t Worry If Your Child’s Not Ready For Potty Training Yet!
Different children grow and develop at different rates! If your child’s not ready yet, just give it time. Don’t try and force things, and don’t worry if things seem to be taking longer than they should.
If your child’s not ready to leave nappies yet, then you can at least ensure that the nappies they wear are as comfortable as possible. Head here to read our full guide to reusable nappies, and how they can be better for you, your baby, and the planet.
Think Your Child is Ready for Potty Training?
If you think your child is ready, you might want to try our eco-disposable training pants – the perfect way to give your child a bit of extra protection while they learn to get to their potty in good time.