How Do You Know if Your Little One Is Ready for Potty Training?

When is the right time to potty train?
Generally children are ready between 18 months and 3 years old, so between these ages would be an appropriate time to begin preparing and learning about it. But remember, this is a time to pay attention to what works for your unique little one; potty training is always most successful when it is individualized.

Strategies to support potty training readiness:
  • Encourage observation and participation. Use the bathroom with the door open so baby can see you perform a toileting routine and narrate the steps so they can start to learn the sequence of actions.
  • Engage your little one in components of the routine like flushing the toilet, ripping off pieces of toilet paper and turning on the water while you wash your hands.
  • Promote baby's body schema by encouraging them to label body parts.
  • Read them books about using the potty.

Clues your baby might be ready to potty train:
  • Your little one is starting to hold their urine, they wake up dry or become upset if they are soiled and need to be changed.
  • Your baby is having regular bowel movements.
  • Baby demonstrates changes in their body posture or facial gestures when eliminating, they might find a private spot, crouch or hide when they are eliminating.
  • They can label their body parts.
  • Baby can start to recognize and label sensations like pee, poop or wet and dry.
  • They follow simple instructions, such as, bring me a diaper (1 step instruction) or go to the bathroom and pull down your pants (2 step instruction).
  • Baby has enough hand strength to successfully pull pants up and down over their bottom.

When you are ready for potty training:
  • You can commit time to potty training depending on which method you’re going to choose.
  • You can be a little bit chill about it and not be too tense.
  • You do not have any other big transitions going on, such as, new house, school, sibling or caregiver. Now might now be the time to potty train. Let’s find a time that’s more relaxed.

For more tips on potty training, listen to our latest podcast episode! Listen Now.