potty training tips for toddlers

Potty Training Tips for Toddlers

12 Simple Potty Training Tips for Toddlers to Help You Potty Train.  

Ready to ditch the diapers? These tricks will help you potty train your child with ease.


Have you noticed that your child has less and less wet diapers? Are they also waking up dry from their nap? They may be interested in the bathroom and ask to sit on the toilet. 

All these signs let you know your child might be ready to potty train. 

Potty training can be challenging, and I’m sure you’ve heard a horror story or two. With patience and preparation, potty training doesn’t have to be a nightmare. And while every child learns and trains differently, these potty training tips for toddlers will set you up for success


Signs Your Child Is Ready to Potty Train

If your child isn’t developmentally ready to potty train, then no amount of tips and tricks will work. So before you begin potty training, wait for these signs your toddler is ready.


  • Your child is interested in the bathroom. If your child begins following you into the bathroom or shows interest in sitting on the toilet, this is a sign your child might be ready to start learning about potty training.


  • Your toddler can communicate. Your toddler should be able to express their needs and follow simple instructions. They need to be able to let you know when they need to go to the bathroom. Your toddler should also be able to respond when you prompt them to use the bathroom and wash their hands.


  • Your little one shows signs of bladder control. If your child can stay dry for two or more hours, they might be ready to potty train. Waking up dry from a nap is another strong indication that they are prepared for potty training.


  • They show discomfort with a dirty diaper. When your child asks you for a clean diaper because they’ve pooped or are uncomfortably wet, that’s a great sign they’re ready to use the toilet.


It’s important to remember to be patient. All children develop differently, so try not to push your toddler before they’re ready. It’s ok if your child is three and hasn’t learned how to use the toilet. 

When the time is right, they’ll get the hang of it more quickly, and you’ll avoid months of frustration.

Your child is showing all the signs they’re ready. So to help you in your potty training journey, we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks to help your toddler be successful.



Pick the right potty

When choosing a potty, make sure you find a durable one that won’t tip or spill when your child gets up quickly. Let them help shop and pick out a potty to get your child excited.

Some children aren’t interested in sitting on a potty and want to start with the “grown-up” toilet. In that case, find a toilet seat that fits well and won’t slide around when your toddler climbs up to sit on it. Ensure you also have a stool so they can access their toilet seat quickly and easily.


Stock up on supplies

You want to ensure you have everything ready to go before you potty train. Once you pull the plug and begin, you don’t want to stop because you didn’t prepare. 

Besides having the right potty, you’ll want to ensure you have training pants and underwear. Some parents immediately opt for underwear, while others transition from diapers to training pants to underwear. Either way, you’ll want training pants for naps and nighttime.

Ensure you have a good amount of underwear and training pants, as your toddler might go through quite a bit at the beginning. And just like with the potty, take them when you shop. They’ll have fun picking out their design, making potty training seem more exciting.

You might also like to have flushable wipes and a stool so they can reach the sink to wash their hands.


Dress for success

Make sure your child’s clothes are easy to wear to potty train in. You want to avoid making the mistake of having items with snaps or buckles. They might be cute, but if they don’t come off quickly, they’ll be more wet than adorable. Dresses, skirts, stretchy pants, and shorts will make potty training easier.

Once you’ve chosen the outfits, practice with your child. Have them work on pulling their pants down and pulling them back up after you’ve changed their diaper. This process will get them ready when the big day comes. 


Show your toddler how

Children love to mimic, which is a great thing to use. Yes, you can tell your child how to sit on the potty and flush, but showing them is much more effective. Bring your child in the bathroom with you and talk to them about what you’re doing. Let them flush the toilet at the end, and have them wash their hands with you.

If you’re a more private person and don’t feel comfortable with this, that’s ok too. Skipping this tip won’t affect the process as your child learns to potty train.


Read a book about potty training

If you don’t feel comfortable bringing your child in the bathroom with you, or even if you do, this is another excellent way to show them how to go potty. There are a lot of great books out there that introduce potty training. 

Start reading these books with your child before you begin to potty train. Let them flip through the pages and look at the pictures. Talk to them as you read about how they can be just like the child in the book. Books are another great way to make your child more comfortable using the potty.


Be patient

Some children get potty training within a day or two, and others have it figured out within a week, while others take a little longer. Every child is different when it comes to potty training. Be patient. Even the child that’s excited about learning to go on the potty can take some time figuring it all out. It can be two steps forward, one step back. Just remember to be patient. They will learn it, and keeping a cool head will help.


Use incentives and rewards

Most of the time, the journey to potty training includes rewards. You don’t need to spend a lot of money, though. Think of something that will excite your child; stickers, candy, a small toy, or even some screen time. Find something you know your child will enjoy and stock up on it. At first, you can offer a small reward whenever they use the potty, then increase the number of times they need to use the toilet before receiving a prize. Incentives are a great way to motivate your child.


Keep a sticker chart

A sticker chart can be used as an incentive or in addition to rewarding your child. Hang the chart in the bathroom or where they will see it often. Let them put a sticker on the chart each time they use the potty. This is another positive way to motivate them and help them see their progress. Letting your child choose the stickers will add to the motivation. 


Offer praise and encouragement

When you potty train your child, you become their cheerleader. Let them know you’re proud of them. Tell them they’re doing a good job. When they have an accident, let them know it’s ok, and they can try again next time. Love, encouragement and some added attention go a long way, so remember to praise them often.


Nighttime potty training is different than daytime potty training

Staying dry throughout the day is a massive achievement for your little one. But staying dry all day doesn’t mean they won’t still have accidents at night. If that’s your little one, understand that this is very normal. Staying dry all night is a different ball game than staying dry during the day.

Many children sleep heavily and don’t wake up at the signs of needing to go to the bathroom. Other children must be developmentally ready to stay dry all night. Feel free to use pull-ups at night but don’t return to using a diaper. Using a diaper can confuse them. You can also put a plastic sheet or mattress cover under their other sheets to make middle-of-the-night bedding changes easier. 

While some children figure out how to potty train quickly at night, it’s an adjustment that may take some time for most children. Keep going if potty training at night takes a little longer. They won’t wet the bed forever.


Don’t be afraid to leave the house

It can be scary to venture out of the house once you’ve begun to potty train. But eventually, you’re going to have to run to the store for that item you need to make dinner, and you’ll need to bring your toddler. As long as you’re prepared, it will be ok. 

Start with some shorter trips out, just 15-20 minutes. Begin to increase those trips a little at a time. When you arrive at a new place, know where the bathrooms are. You might need to make a quick run to them at some point. Don’t leave the house without extra clothes in case your child does have an accident. 

Public restrooms are not clean, so consider having a travel potty in your car. Some potty seats also fold and can fit in your diaper bag, and this is a great option to keep in your diaper bag in case your child has to use the public bathroom.


Make potty training fun

Deciding to potty train can be daunting and not just for you. It can feel overwhelming for your toddler as well. So make it fun. Think up silly songs to sing, find books to read, or tell them a story while they sit on the potty. Just make it fun. Making potty training fun and exciting will take some pressure off you and your toddler. 



Potty training can be challenging. 

There will be bumps and hurdles along the way. While the thought of no more diapers is exciting, the road to get there will require patience. 


But don’t be discouraged. 

You will find a method that works best for you, and before you know it, your child will be potty trained. When that happens, make sure you take a moment to celebrate. 


Potty training is a huge milestone for both of you! Hopefully, these potty training tips for toddlers will get you on your way! 


Need help getting started?

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