I’m honored to be a member of the Pampers Baby Board, sharing what worked for our children when it comes to potty training. Thanks Pampers! For more information, please visit www.Pampers.com or follow @Pampers on Twitter and Facebook or @PampersUS on Instagram. Please see more disclosures at the bottom of this page.
Is your child ready for potty training?
- Can he/she communicate? I know there are plenty of children who potty train very early and don’t necessarily know how to speak, but I’ve waited until the bare minimum of at least saying “No pee pee” or just “pee pee”. Liam was 3 when we potty trained him and Hayden is 2 years and 4 months right now and we just started this week!
- Has she/he shown signs of being ready? Hayden has shown the most obvious sign of being ready: At just under 2 years old, he wanted to be just like his big brother and daddy, by peeing in the potty right before bath time every night. One evening, my husband put him up to the potty and said to “go pee pee” and he did! We tried it again every night after that and knew he was ready because of his determination to pee in the potty before his bath. He understood the concepts and thoroughly enjoyed the praise for being so big. The only reason I waited a few months to potty train was for his speech to catch up. I needed him to be able to tell me when he had to use the bathroom. Still to this day, his speech is very limited, but he can say “pee pee”. I think it helps a ton to have a big brother who is doing the same thing, too.
- Does he/she dislike having a dirty diaper? My kids have never shown any discomfort from a dirty diaper (thanks for having such good diapers, Pampers! haha!). However, I know they got a little pep in their step when I would put a new diaper on. Weight be gone!
- Can you recognize when she/he is going to the bathroom in the diaper? This one is huge. Liam had a certain spot he always went to to go poop (under the kitchen table) and Hayden always makes a grunting sound when he is peeing. These are both good signs that you can be extra aware of when it comes time to potty train. You can see that they are about to use the bathroom and quickly remind them, “go pee pee”!
How to get started potty training
- Mark a start date on your calendar. You’ll need some time to organize your thoughts. Plan for not leaving your home for a few days and time it out so you’ll be finished with diapers (don’t want to waste any!). Be sure and stock up on lots of liquids, too. You’ll be encouraging sips of water/milk/juice/smoothies/etc. all day for a few days to be sure that your child gets good practice every time they use the potty.
- Say “Good Bye” to the diapers. On the morning of potty training, say a nice good bye to the diapers. My boys are still in Pampers Easy Ups training underwear during rest times (nap and bed time) and I explain to them that we still wear Easy Ups during sleep.
- Say “Hello” to underwear! Whether you choose to use Pampers Easy Ups Training Underwear or standard underwear, emphasize how big your child is when they are putting them on! Choosing training underwear or cloth underwear that has a favorite character or color on it helps a lot, too. For Liam, it was Mickey Mouse on his behind, whereas Hayden is a huge train fan. Thank goodness, Easy Ups has Thomas the Tank Engine™ and Hello Kitty™ designs for extra encouragement. Don’t forget to pull out your camera of your toddler in their underwear (or “underwear!”)! Show them the photos and praise them for being in big boy/girl underwear.
- Start setting a timer. For three or more days, you’ll want to take your child to the bathroom every 10-20 minutes. This will vary based on how much they’ve had to drink and how many accidents he/she is having. You’ll get used to adjusting the intervals as you and your child get to know the process.
- Praise! Praise! Praise! Get on the enthusiasm train because they’ll be more encouraged to continue using the potty if they see that from you. I like to praise in a high pitch voice, kiss my sweet kids and clap for them when they are learning to pee in the potty.
- Don’t fret over accidents. Don’t make much of a fuss over accidents. Just say, “it’s okay. You had an accident. Your underwear is wet now. Let’s go pee pee in the potty so it stays dry.” And if you’re like me, you’ll need a break during the day and so will your little one. I’ve always started potty training at the beginning of summer so that we could spend some time during the day outside…butt-naked. I think this is a good break for parents and children when potty training, as well as a good re-enforcer of potty training. When they’re naked, they can see the pee coming out and visualize what’s happening and how it feels.
- Have patience. This is so hard. Hayden has been potty training for 1 week now and it’s been the hardest week of my life. Balancing three children (a five year old, 2 year old potty trainer and an infant) is exhausting during this process. It’s physically and mentally demanding. Thankfully, there is a light at the tunnel. When your child “gets it”, the process becomes so much easier! They begin telling you when they have to go to the bathroom and you see that all of your hard work paid off. They’ll be so proud and you will be, too. Stick with it and your child will be potty trained in no time at all!
Thoughts on Potty Training with Pampers Easy Ups
Since we started at a younger age with Hayden, the Pampers Easy Ups were our underwear training method of choice. It’s basically become the transition step between diapers and underwear that allows for protection for my sanity from accidents while juggling all three kids and still feels like underwear for Hayden. The Easy Ups were actually just awarded the 2017 Best New Product Award, picked by 10,000 parents who tried and loved them!
We’ve been at it for a week and I still can’t find a good way to encourage pooping in the potty. He doesn’t show any tell-tale signs of pooping like Liam would (under the kitchen table) and he definitely doesn’t mind sitting on it a while either (yuck!). Because of this, he has 1-2 poop accidents per day. I know he’ll get the hang of it someday, but for now, the Easy Ups save us a lot of trauma in that department. The Easy Ups have a 360° stretchy waistband for an underwear-like fit that’s easy for Hayden to pull up and down, but they also tear easily at the sides just in case an emergency evacuation is required.
An additional bonus of using the Easy Ups is that they are the only training underwear with Pampers exclusive Extra Absorb Channels™, which provide outstanding protection against leaks during the day AND night. Dual Leak-Guard Barriers™ around the legs prevent the leaks that can happen when they are on the move. These channels are the same ones Pampers uses in their diapers we are used to, so I have full confidence of the training underwear not leaking either! Yay!
Since life with three kids can’t come to a halt for weeks on end, I’m ever so grateful for Easy Ups during those runs to the grocery store with the children. We’re always out for at least one hour, which for a potty training little one is so hard. And being a germ-a-phobe myself, I don’t think all three of us would do so well in the public restroom quite yet. I know that day will come very soon, but during potty training weeks, I will appreciate the convenience of accident prevention at the grocery store that Easy Ups can provide. I especially wouldn’t want to have to put a diaper on Hayden and lose all the hard work and progress we’ve made just so we don’t have a puddle in the grocery store.
Big boy pants, here we come!
This post was created in partnership with Pampers. I was compensated for this post. All opinions are my own. Please read my disclosure policy for further information.