Toilet training is an essential part of habit formation in every child. However, toilet training a child is definitely not an easy task as most mothers would certify. Many mothers are also confused about when is the right time when a child can be toilet trained.
Forcing a child into toilet training sessions will make him defiant and lead to problems. The child starts getting reluctant to pass stools each passing day and this can lead to constipation which is even more difficult to deal with. So how do you toilet train a child adequately without leading him to constipation.
Certain simple observations and techniques will make sure that your child is ready for toilet training and does not start constipating while he gets potty trained. Following these things will make sure that he goes through a smooth transition without much problems for him as well as his mother.
Is He Ready?
The first ever thing that you need to asses while toilet training your child is to make sure that he is ready for the process. Many mothers make the mistake of starting toilet training for their kids just because they have crossed a certain age. If you child shows a reluctance to the new routine, it will not help him in any way.
He will be totally confused and scared and will not be able to follow your strict instructions to pass his stools. This will lead to constipation in the kids and fear of passing stools partly due to the new process and partly due to the pain associated with constipation. Ensure that the child is mature enough before you can introduce him to toilet training. There is no harm in being a little late. All children eventually learn to pass stools in the toilet and this should not worry you.
Introduce Him To The Potty
Once your child shows the maturity to be toilet trained, you can introduce him to the potty. Probably he can choose the potty he wants. There are a number of colourful and interesting varieties out there and kids just love to jump on to them for passing stools. Create an interest in him by allowing him to sit on it as often as possible. Do not push him yet to pass stools in that. Let him get used to the idea.
Find The Right Time
Slowly, you can leave him on the potty after observing a certain time when he always passes stools. A good idea is to put him in the mornings so that the habit forms gradually. You may remove any fears he may have in passing stools on his toy. Tell him that it is designed for the purpose and mummy will not be annoyed at him for soiling it. This will help him release the stools instead of holding on to it and creating constipation. It is a good idea to observe at what times he is prone to pass stools and put him in the potty at those times.
Do not force him during the time of toilet training as he will hold back which will again create constipation. If he doesn’t want to use the potty, give him the choice to pass stools in his diaper as he has always been doing. Coercing will only prolong the process and the transition will be slow. The idea is to slowly lead him to the new routine so that he does not feel that it is new anymore.
High Fibre Diet
For preventing constipation during toilet training, you can feed him a high fibre diet. Include plenty of fruits and vegetables and fresh juices along with plenty of water. This will ensure that his bowel movement is smooth and he does not feel any pain, causing him to shy away from toilet training. Include whole grains as well in his diet. If your child is prone to constipation, it is better to avoid foods that can cause constipation. Cow’s milk, sweets and bananas can cause constipation and hence must be avoided completely to ease his bowel movement.
Plenty Of Fluids
Allow him to drink water at all times. A glass of warm water before toilet training can sometimes help in softening the stools and provide relief for the child. A child who is prone to constipation must not be forced into potty training as he will have the double trauma of having to deal with constipation as well as the new regime of potty training. Allow him to drink fruit juices and water in plenty and let his system come back to normalcy before you can introduce the idea of toilet training to him.
With his first successful attempt in passing stools in the potty, you must shower him with praises. This will make him understand that he has done something that you completely approve of and remove any fears he may have about toilet training. Let him understand the significance. Praising him will encourage him and he would want to use the potty more often to get more praises from you.
Do not at any time admonish him if he fails to pass stools in the potty or has passed stools before he could reach the potty. This will only discourage him further and send him back to square one. Give him time to get adjusted and learn how to control his bodily functions. Once he starts feeling good about the whole process, he will start passing stools on his own without you having to tell him all the time.
Make It A Pleasant Endeavour
As your child is slowly making the transition, make it a pleasant endeavour for him so that he gets adjusted fast and does not harbour any fear or misconceptions about toilet training. Never be impatient or force him to do it. Be near him all the time as he could need assistance or would feel scared if left alone. At any point of time if you feel he is holding back due to fear or constipation, allow him to use a diaper and wait patiently for the next session.