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Tips & Advice - Toilet Training

By choosing the right time and approaching toilet training in a calm, patient manner, you can help your child acquire this new skill as quickly and smoothly as possible. It is important to remember that every child is different so try not to compare your child to others. You may feel under pressure to ‘get toilet training out of the way’, perhaps because you have another baby on the way, or your child may be starting Preschool soon. 

Toilet training is one of those child developmental stages parents can find frustrating and complex. Making the transition from nappy to toilet can be a challenge, particularly if you feel pressurised to start the process before your child is really ready.

Here are some tips and advice to help you overcome common toilet training troubles. They cover areas such as deciding whether your child is ready for toilet training and how to support your little one as they learn this important new skill.

But rushing toilet training is counter-productive and it’s worth understanding that:

  • by the age of three, 9 out of 10 children are dry most days;

  • by the age of four most children are reliably dry. So, try not to worry or compete with others – wait to start toilet training at the right time for your child.


Here are some signs that your child may be ready to start toilet training

  • they know when they’ve got a wet or dirty nappy

  • they get to know when they’re passing urine and may tell you they’re doing it

  • the gap between wetting is at least an hour (if it’s less, potty training may fail, and at the very least will be extremely hard work for you)

  • they show they need to wee by fidgeting or going somewhere quiet or hidden

  • they know when they need to wee and may say so in advance


Before beginning toilet training, it is a good idea to ensure there are no great disruptions or changes to your child’s or your family’s routine. This can make toilet training stressful for your child, which in turn will put them off the idea.

Here are some great ways to support toilet training once the child is ready to begin potty training.



Children will familiarise particular routines with their location, so it is important for them to begin linking the bathroom with having a wee or poo. In the weeks running up to toilet training it is a good idea to always ensure you are changing the child’s nappy in the bathroom. Once toilet training begins, a potty should always be present in the bathroom. If the bathroom is upstairs, you can keep an extra potty downstairs for emergencies.

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