Many children begin showing signs they are ready to transition from diapers to underwear between the ages of 18 months and 3 years, with girls typically beginning the process a bit earlier than boys. One of the reasons girls may start potty training sooner is because they reach an age where they are more aware of soiling their diaper. If your daughter is reaching this age, you may have already noticed her becoming uncomfortable in her diaper or communicating to you in her own special way that she needs to be changed.
Here are five of our favorite tips for potty training girls:
- Be clear and consistent
Adults should always be clear in their communications with their daughters about potty training, and consistent in their language and schedules. In other words, if you ask your daughter if she wants to go to the bathroom, she may think you are asking if she wants to walk in there, not if she needs to use the toilet. Be thoughtful of the language you use and understand that it may take awhile for your daughter to realize what “going to the bathroom” means.
- Create an established routine
It’s important for parents to remain aware of when their daughter needs to go to the bathroom, as little girls tend to get bladder infections if they have a dirty diaper on for a long period of time. The sooner you can get your daughter to the bathroom, the better, so set a schedule for how often you and your child will head to the bathroom to see if she needs to go. Pretty soon, your daughter might be the one reminding you that it’s been 20 minutes since she went to the bathroom and that it’s time to go again.
- Help her relax
Many little girls want their parent, guardian or caregiver to stay with them when they go to the bathroom, and you never want to leave a child in the bathroom alone. Adults can read or talk to their daughters to help them relax and feel comfortable on the toilet. Some girls may end up feeling anxious or get off the chair if you leave them alone, and many little ones may need encouragement.
- Invest in the right tools
Each child has her own unique personality, and it can be helpful for parents and guardians to first consider how their daughter learns before they go out and buy different potty training tools. Some little ones feel uncomfortable starting their training on the adult toilet, so families may want to invest in a smaller, more toddler-friendly toilet than a removable seat.
Nothing is stronger than a positive attitude when it comes to training a child, and multiple potty training experts suggest parents and guardians remain positive about the experience to help their children succeed. Nothing beats talking to your daughter about toilet training in an upbeat and casual manner can help her understand that it’s something everyone does and that it is something she can master. .
Remember that your daughter may take a few weeks or months to become fully potty trained, so it’s important that you stay consistent and positive throughout the entire experience rather than punishing her if she soils the toilet.