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Potty Training: 8 Tips For When You Are Ready

Published on
August 20, 2019

We have talked before about potty training and have provided some tips to help your child get ready for the change. Are you ready to start? Read along for tips that will help you along the way! (If you haven't already, first read our previous blog post titled "Potty Training: 4 Ways To Prepare Before You Start").

We have talked before about potty training and have provided some tips to help your child get ready for the change (check out the first post in our Potty Training Series here).

If you have already prepared by implementing our suggestions and are ready to start more intensive potty training with your child, please read on for tips and tricks that will support you in making this a successful experience for your child!

1.    Put your child in underwear – immediately

·      When you are ready to start potty training, stop using diapers as soon as possible.

·      The use of underwear while potty training is one of the most important steps. When your child goes in their diaper, they don’t have the opportunity to feel wet.The discomfort of feeling wet when going in underwear encourages your child to not want to have accidents while wearing underwear.

2.    Develop a visual guide for potty training

·      For some children with autism, the use of a visual step-by-step guide can be beneficial in helping them complete tasks.

·      Keep this visual guide in the designated bathroom and review it with your child before each bathroom visit.

3.    Carve out a few days to dedicate to intensive potty training

·      To start out, potty training should be as intensive as possible. It will require a lot of work on your end, so make sure you are scheduling it during a time that you will be available to run into the bathroom with your child at a moment’s notice. The first 2-3 days will be spent following the toileting schedule the entire day.

4.    Follow a timed schedule for sits on the potty

·      To start, have your child sit on the potty every 5 minutes. This gives them plenty of opportunities for success and can minimize accidents. Have your child sit for a total of 1-3 minutes or until they go in the toilet.

·      For every success in the potty, increase 10-15 minutes between sits.

·      For every accident, decrease 10-15 minutes between sits until you are back down to 5 minutes.

5.    Provide access to preferred drinks

·      By drinking plenty of liquids throughout the day, your child will have more opportunities to go to the bathroom.

6.    Ensure your child has a way to request to use the bathroom

·      If your child talks, have them say the word “potty” before taking them to the bathroom each time.

·      If your child uses an alternative communication system (PECS, AAC device, etc.), ensure that you have an image of the potty and have them select this image each time you take them to the bathroom.  

7.    Be consistent

·      Once you start potty training, stick to the schedule.

·      Do not re-introduce diapers once you have started having them in underwear.

·      Continue to give rewards for each instance of successful bathroom trips until you feel your child is able to continue going on the toilet without receiving a reward.

8.    Seek professional help if needed

·      Potty training a child with and without disabilities can be difficult! If you feel you need support to potty train your child, reach out to an ABA provider for an individualized support plan.

At GBC aba, we are here to help!we are eager to make potty training a successful journey for your family! Please call or email us today at 312-882-1024 or info@gbcaba.com for more information!