When will my toddler be ready to potty train?
Signs to look out for that your toddler is ready to start potty training
When are toddlers physically ready for potty training?
To begin potty training, your little one should be able to move around independently and pull their pull up pants up and down with little or no help. It’s useful if their bowel movements are fairly predictable so that you can choose the best times of day to encourage them to try using the potty.
It really helps if they understand what they are feeling when they sense the urge to go so that they can anticipate the need to sit on the potty.
Watch out for behavioural signs like grimacing before a poo or wriggling and hopping from foot to foot when they need to wee. Help them understand that this is their body's way of telling them what is about to happen and that this is when they should sit on the potty.
And emotionally ready for potty training?
They need to be able to imitate your behaviour - i.e. go to the toilet, pull down their clothes and sit - and show an interest in using the toilet. Forcing a reluctant toddler to toilet train is only going to create a battle for everyone and may turn the toilet or potty into an object to be feared.
Some little ones who are showing signs of readiness like to take themselves off to a quiet corner to poo. This shows an awareness of their bodily functions and their ability to anticipate what’s going to happen.
Ultimately, a child needs to be able to understand that people use the toilet when they want to wee or poo and make the connection that this is something they need to learn to do too.
How about communication?
Finally, it’s important for them to be able to express the need to go to the toilet so that you can help them with what to do next. They also need to be able to follow simple instructions such as 'let's go to the potty'.