You need time, effort and patience if you are potty training your kids. You have to understand that every child follows their own path to potty training. Although starting early does help, it is best not to compare and take stress over your little one’s slow progress. I have often seen friends stressing over the difficulty they face while potty training their sons as opposed to their daughters because potty training for boys can sometimes be hard.
Common myths make one believe that potty-training boys is more difficult than girls. There is definitely a difference here but that difference lies in the approach to potty training boys as compared to girls. The way you train boys to be toilet trained is entirely different. Understanding this can help you train your child better and faster.
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What is the aim of potty training?
- Recognize and understand the urge to relieve himself through urination or passing stool.
- Understand the relevance of the place called toilet and when it should be used.
- Communicate that there is a need to go to the toilet.
- Develop enough control that he can hold his urine and stool and relieve himself only in the toilet and on the toilet seat.
- Use the toilet in the right manner.
How do you know that your child is ready for potty training?
The first step in potty training is knowing if your child is ready or not. If you try to potty train your child before he or she is ready, it can be completely wasted effort which can be frustrating too.
Here are few things that your child should be able to do before you commence potty training:
- According to pediatricians, the child should be able to pull up and push down their pants or underwear on their own.
- The child should be able to stay dry for two or three hours at least.
- The child should be able to communicate when he or she wants to go to the toilet.
Why is there a gender gap in potty training?
There are several reasons why there is a difference in the time taken to potty train boys and girls. Understand these:
- Boys generally do not have a male role model who is always available to show them how to use the toilet.
- Little boys find it difficult to adjust their penises in a manner that the urine flows directly into the pot. if they end up creating a mess in the washroom, it becomes discouraging for them to try again.
- Mothers often expect little boys to pee standing and poop sitting down which often confuses little boys.
- Boys who are at the age of potty training are usually very active and cannot sit still. This often delays the process of potty training boys.
However, there is no real gender specific time period when it comes to potty training. Several little girls take longer to be trained as compared to their male sibling or peer. The response to potty training differs from one child to the other and can’t be associated with gender alone.
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Potty training for girls
- Use a potty chair or a potty ring for your daughter or give her a stool to place her legs in case of an adult toilet seat.
- The child should sit on the potty seat such that her genitals are over the pot. Ask her to keep the knees apart to help the pelvic muscles relax.
- After your daughter is done using the toilet, teach her to wipe herself from the front to the back. This ensures that the fecal matter does not enter the vagina.
Potty training for boys
- You can start by teaching your child to sit on the toilet before teaching him to stand. Usually parents prefer to teach their son to sit even when he is urinating in the initial stages.
- When your little one is sitting over the toilet, ask him to keep his legs open. The penis should point downwards when the child is sitting. This prevents injuries and also keeps the urine stream directed.
- Teaching your son to stand and urinate can be quite tricky. It can also be messy in the beginning. If your spouse or any other trusted male role model is able to demonstrate this to the child, it is much easier.
- Ask the child to stand in front of the potty seat with his feet a little apart. Ask him to direct the stream of urine into the center of the bowl. If this is difficult for the child to do, you can also throw in a piece of toilet paper into the pot and ask your son to aim at it.
- If the child is using an adult toilet, you can use a toilet seat insert and give him a stool to place his legs on.
When you are potty training your child, you need to be very appreciative. Make each potty training session a big deal. When he or she uses the toilet seat correctly, do not forget to praise them in abundance.
You must also appraise the habit of washing the hands when you begin potty training your child. There are also several children’s books that become great potty training aids for little ones. You can even talk to your child about the importance of personal hygiene when you start potty training. In case there are any accidents, tell kids that it is all right and encourage them to continue using the toilet.
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