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What to do when Potty Training Just Doesn’t Seem to Work

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When Potty Training Seems to Fail

We all have our motivation to get our kids out of diapers. Besides the expense, there’s social pressure from others who say “you were out of diapers when you were 18 months” and there’s also the moving up to the next room at daycare with other kids their age. The fact is, at some point every parent wonders why potty training isn’t working for your family.

What should you do if your child isn’t potty training?

If your child is over 3 and isn’t taking to the potty, you may want to bring it up with your pediatrician or other health care provider. Some children may have physiological issues that you want to rule out. We bring this up first, because if there’s an issue that needs resolving, the other techniques to encourage potty training will not help.

What are other tricks to potty training?

  1. Try bottom free time. No pants, no undies and a potty chair wherever the kiddo is playing that day. Yes, you may want to keep it in doors. This works if you can spend a few days at home without needing to run outside.
  2. Offer rewards. You may use stickers or a new toy when they use the potty. Many researchers are indicating rewards of food may not be a good idea, but if it works for you, then go ahead and offer the chocolate for using the potty.
  3. We previously mentioned books: positive peer pressure does work for some kids, so go ahead and get the books!
  4. Have a potty play date. Yep! Invite other kids over who are potty trained so your kids will actually know their friends who are potty trained. They need not follow them to the bathroom, but they will notice that their friends use the potty and it may encourage them.
  5. Forget to buy diapers. Yes, some families have done this because it also stops the parents from using them as a crutch when the kiddo refuses to try on panties. Out of sight out of mind? Perhaps!

But when it comes down to potty training that doesn’t work, sometimes you need to step back. Just when you least expect it, they may surprise you and decide they’re ready. It does still cost money (unless you’ve been using the same cloth diapers), but using the bathroom is a private issue, and your child may just need extra time. Also, it is less stressful if you’ve tried all the tips above and it still isn’t working.

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