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Many parents are unsure about when to start toilet teaching or "potty training.

" Not all kids are
ready at the same age, so it's important to watch your child for signs of readiness, such as
stopping an activity for a few seconds or clutching his or her diaper.

Most children begin to show these signs between 18 and 24 months, although some may be
ready earlier or later than that. And boys often start later and take longer to learn to use the potty
than girls.

Instead of using age as a readiness indicator, look for other signs that your child may be ready to
start heading for the potty, such as the ability to:

 follow simple instructions

 understand words about the toileting process

 control the muscles responsible for elimination

 verbally express a need to go

 keep a diaper dry for 2 hours or more

 get to the potty, sit on it, and then get off the potty

 pull down diapers, disposable training pants, or underpants

 show an interest in using the potty or wearing underpants

About Timing

There are some stressful or difficult times when you may want to put off starting the toilet-
teaching process — when traveling, around the birth of a sibling, changing from the crib to the
bed, moving to a new house, or when your child is sick (especially if diarrhea is a factor). It may
be better to postpone it until your child's environment is stable and secure.

Also, while some experts recommend starting the process during summer because kids wear less
clothing, but it is not a good idea to wait if your child is ready.

When your child shows signs of readiness, and not before.

Healthy children aren't physically and emotionally ready to start using a potty until they are
between 18 months and three years old. Boys tend to be ready a few months later than girls.

Most parents start the training when their children are between two years and three years old.

You shouldn't force your child to use a potty if she doesn't want to. True independence is a lot to ask of a baby. This is done by watching for signs of an imminent wee or poo and catching it in the potty. Get the facts on timing. and is showing an interest. A child under two years cannot control when they wee and poo. or when they encounter stressful situations. Is it time? . or how you go about it. This method is called elimination communication. The secret to success? Timing and patience. Potty training: How to get the job done Potty training is a major milestone. or if she is not ready to start. They may experience setbacks with using school toilets. Some parents start potty training when their babies are younger than four months. technique and handling the inevitable accidents. However. It's better to wait until your child is ready. and starting too early will result in accidents. and even suggest that children who have been trained in this way have problems later on. This is regardless of when you start potty training. as it means that she knows:  how and when to use the toilet  how to hang on until she reaches the toilet  how to flush  how to pull her clothes up and down  how to wipe her bottom without your help All of this doesn't happen in most children until the age of about three years or four years. and you needn't potty train your toddler at all if you don't want to. most health visitors don't advise this.But there's no official age. Your child may copy others without needing any instructions. The muscles that control their bladder and rectum aren't mature until they reach about 18 months to two years. as long as you make it clear to her what she has to do. That's why waiting for signs that they are ready is the key to success. and where she must do it. By Mayo Clinic Staf Potty training is a big step for kids and parents alike.

Have your child decorate the chair. Pull out the equipment Place a potty chair in the bathroom or. Is your child ready? Ask yourself these questions:  Does your child seem interested in the potty chair or toilet. If you answered mostly no. Many kids show interest in potty training by age 2. Make sure your child's feet rest firmly on the floor or a stool. Encourage your child to sit on the potty chair — with or without a diaper. correct terms. Start by maintaining a positive attitude — and recruiting all of your child's caregivers to do the same. set. or let your child see family members using the toilet. but others might not be ready until age 2 1/2 or even older — and there's no rush. If you start potty training too early.Potty-training success hinges on physical and emotional readiness. facial expressions or posture when he or she needs to go?  Does your child stay dry for periods of two hours or longer during the day?  Does your child complain about wet or dirty diapers?  Can your child pull down his or her pants and pull them up again?  Can your child sit on and rise from a potty chair? If you answered mostly yes. initially. wherever your child is spending most of his or her time. A toddler who opposes potty training today might be open to the idea in a few months. go! When you decide it's time to begin potty training. set your child up for success. Ready. it might take longer to train your child. such as a move or the arrival of a new sibling. or in wearing underwear?  Can your child understand and follow basic directions?  Does your child tell you through words. Schedule potty breaks . your child might be ready for potty training. Then follow these steps. not a specific age. Help your child understand how to talk about the bathroom using simple. you might want to wait — especially if your child has recently faced or is about to face a major change. You might dump the contents of a dirty diaper into the potty chair to show its purpose.

For others. Teach girls to wipe carefully from front to back to prevent bringing germs from the rectum to the vagina or bladder. To maintain consistency. "How exciting! You're learning to use the toilet just like big kids do!" Be positive even if a trip to the toilet isn't successful. use disposable training pants or mattress covers when your child sleeps. squatting or holding the genital area — respond quickly. Nap and nighttime training might take months — or years — longer. Help your child become familiar with these signals. leotards or other items that could hinder undressing. Go on a special outing. avoid overalls. Read a potty-training book or give your child a toy to use while sitting on the potty chair or toilet. Once your child is wearing training pants or regular underwear. belts. stop what he or she is doing. Get there — Fast! When you notice signs that your child might need to use the toilet — such as squirming. Stay with your child when he or she is in the bathroom. Consider incentives Some kids respond to stickers or stars on a chart. let your child do the honors. and head to the toilet. trips to the park or extra bedtime stories are effective. it's often best to master urination sitting down. Reinforce your child's effort with verbal praise. Ditch the diapers After several weeks of successful potty breaks. Praise your child for telling you when he or she has to go. and then move to standing up after bowel training is complete. Celebrate this transition. When it's time to flush.If your child is interested. try to bring the potty chair or a portable potty with you when you're away from home with your child. such as. Sleep soundly Most children master daytime bladder control first. Let your child pick out his or her underwear. have him or her sit on the potty chair or toilet without a diaper for a few minutes several times a day. your child might be ready to trade diapers for training pants or underwear. In the meantime. For boys. Make sure your child washes his or her hands afterward. Even if your child simply sits there. offer praise for trying — and remind your child that he or she can try again later. often within about two to three months of consistent toilet training. Know when to call it quits .

Accidents will happen You might breathe easier once your child figures out how to use the toilet. If your potty-trained child reverts or loses ground — especially at age 4 or older — or you're concerned about your child's accidents. To fight this phenomenon. If your child has an accident. contact his or her doctor."  Be prepared. Prompt treatment can help your child become accident-free. If your child has frequent accidents. You might say. Try again in a few months. Sometimes wetting problems indicate an underlying physical condition. Keep a change of underwear and clothing handy. but they can lead to teasing. Kids don't have accidents to irritate their parents. Next time you'll get to the bathroom sooner. . after each meal and snack. suggest regular bathroom trips. "You forgot this time. don't scold. Here's help preventing — and handling — wet pants:  Offer reminders. Point out telltale signs of holding it. absorbent underwear might be best. Chances are he or she isn't ready yet. embarrassment and alienation from peers. such as a urinary tract infection or an overactive bladder. When to seek help Occasional accidents are harmless. and before getting in the car or going to bed. discipline or shame your child. especially at school or in child care. such as holding the genital area. take a break.  Stay calm. Accidents often happen when kids are absorbed in activities that — for the moment — are more interesting than using the toilet. but expect occasional accidents and near misses. such as first thing in the morning.If your child resists using the potty chair or toilet or isn't getting the hang of it within a few weeks.

toilet training begins early--sometimes within weeks of birth. Here I cover  What the scientific evidence says about the timing of potty training  Infant potty training (0-12 months)  Older infant/ young toddler training (12-18 months)  Older toddlers (18-24 months)  Potty training after 24 months Overview In many parts of the world. And they never wear diapers. babies learn basic toilet training skills before they can walk. 3 or even 4 years. your goals. According to a recent study. The situation is very different in the United States. African-American parents believe that toilet training should begin around 18 months. where children may wear diapers for 2. . all rights reserved What is the right potty training age? The answer depends on you. Caucasian-American parents believe that training should start even later--after 25 months. on average (Horn et al 2006).The timing of toilet training: What's the best potty training age? © 2006-2015 Gwen Dewar. Without being punished or abused. and the characteristics of your child.

earlier training may be beneficial.These attitudes are new. early training isn’t right for everyone. Children who don't begin training until after the age of 24 months may not reach this milestone until their third birthdays (Duong et al 2013). In past generations. age-appropriate methods. But many parents worry that early training can be harmful. In fact." Many people assume that early training means using harsh. Horstmanshoff et al 2003). In a recent study. Why does early training have a bad rap? One reason. Bakker and Wyndaele 2000. It does not.eliminating any residual urine that can harbor bacteria. most American children were out of diapers by 18 months (Martin et al 1984). There is also evidence that early trainees are at lower risk for developing problems with incontinence later in life. For the details. In the rest of this article. That's likely because they learn to empty their bladders completely -. giardia and rotavirus. When parents use gentle. I suspect. is that people confuse “when to train" with “how to train. too (Largo et al 1996. Their parents save money and time on diapering. Nevertheless. early training is safe. I compare the advantages and disadvantages associated with training four different potty training age groups:  Infants (0-12 months) . It’s a trend observed in Europe. This suggests that an earlier potty training age is better. more than half the children over 32 months failed to stay dry during the day (Schum et al 2002). Besides avoiding diaper rash and diaper-born infections. The timing of potty training: What the scientific evidence says Despite what you might have heard about behavioral problems or Freudian personality disorders. They’ve heard potty “experts" warn that early training causes behavioral problems or personality disorders. and have more flexibility when searching for preschools. read my article on what scientific studies tell us about the timing of potty training. young children who were trained in infancy are less likely to suffer recurrent urinary tract infections. many kids don’t master basic toilet training skills until they are almost 3 years old. Since the Second World War. Should you follow—or buck—this trend? Potty-trained children avoid diaper rash and diaper-related infections—like yeast. kids are taking longer and longer to learn toileting skills. there is no scientific evidence that an early potty training age harms children. coercive methods. Today. It’s therefore surprising to discover that these worries are misplaced.

When the infant is ready to go. Boucke 2002). If you wait until a later potty training age." This isn’t what many people mean by “toilet training. the smell of a child’s urine and feces is less objectionable to most people. the parent holds him over a sink. and East Africa (deVries and deVries 1977. But such early training has its benefits. the parental sign becomes an invitation to void. When exactly does training start? . eventually. China. Parents also avoid some of the problems associated with training older children. As the infant voids. bowl. cleaning up accidents will be more unpleasant. When the baby feels the urge to go. the traditional potty training age is early infancy. so they don’t have as many habits to break. In these societies. the parent makes a characteristic sound or gesture." Babies obviously can’t walk or flush or wipe themselves.staying dry with parental supervision.  Young toddlers (12-18 months)  Older toddlers (18 months and up)  Preschoolers (27 months and beyond) Infant potty training: 0-12 months It sounds bizarre to many Westerners. and. toilet. they avoid diaper rash and diaper-associated infections. And at this early potty training age. or the open ground. so infant toilet training is necessarily a more modest affair-. The baby learns to associate this parental sign with voiding. he learns to hold back for a brief time until his parent gives him the “all clear. To the degree that babies avoid diapers. parents learn to recognize their babies’ body signals and to use these signals to anticipate when their babies eliminate. But for parents in places like India. Babies aren’t used to wearing diapers.

depending on your child’s personality and developmental schedule. For another. However.Traditionally. infant potty training begins during the first three months after birth (Boucke 2003). . some advocates recommend a somewhat later potty training age (3-6 months). However. children learning to walk may be too excited to sit still on a potty chair (Brazelton and Sparrow 2004). this could be a difficult potty training age. Choosing the right potty training age for older infants and young toddlers (12-18 months) In 1920s and 1930s. like older children. toilet training veterans say infant training can be more difficult if your baby has learned to crawl or is learning to walk. they are less patient about sitting still on a potty chair. older babies and toddlers may find it hard to break the diaper habit. Once babies discover mobility. European and American parents often began training between 12-18 months (Bakker and Wyndaele 2000). Once a baby can sit up--straight and steady--you can train her on a potty chair. when babies pee less frequently and can sit up on their own. children aged 15-19 months were more resistant to sitting on potty chairs than were younger and older children (Sears et al 1957). And one writer suggests that older babies. For one thing. It’s possible to start later. have become accustomed to wearing diapers and ignoring their body signals (Boucke 2003). too--between 6-12 months. Learn more about a chair-based training method here. In one study. However.

But this potty training age has its advantages. then you obviously should wait until she can walk. No matter when or how you train. You can make potty training easier if you actively prepare your child months in advance. you can try the infant potty-chair method." and “your child tells you he wants to wear grow-up underwear. most children are not ready to begin training until 18-24 months." Waiting until your child is ready sounds reasonable. The interval between 12-18 months is the perfect time to start thinking about toilet readiness--a set of skills and interests that will help your child master advanced toilet skills later on (see below). Children under 18 months are often eager to please adults--a trait that older kids may lack (think of the “terrible twos. you don’t need to wait for signs of advanced “readiness. A variety of diagnostic signs have been proposed. back off and try later. Proposed signs include developmental milestones--like walking. Potty training after 18 months: Should you wait for signs of "toilet readiness?" According to many potty training guides (American Academy of Pediatrics 2006).") If you’re interested. there is nothing sacred about this potty training age-range. Find tips on potty training preparation here. you must work up to this goal gradually (Bakker 2002). If you decide to wait until a later potty training age. And keep realistic goals. Who would want to train a child who isn’t ready? The trouble lies with definitions of readiness. However. your child will be less competent than an . If your goal is for your child to walk into the bathroom and sit on the potty by herself. They also include new attitudes. you can still put this time to good use. like “your child says he wants to do things for himself. The recommendation that you start after 18 months is based on the idea that children should show signs of “toilet readiness" before you ask them to use the potty. If your child resists. the ability to follow verbal commands. and the ability to stay dry for two hours at a time. Does your child need to walk to use a potty? Does your child need to express an interest in underwear? The answer depends on your goal. But if you’re interested in the more modest goals of infant-toddler training. This potty training age is about staying dry with careful parental supervision. Many of these signs require pretty advanced developmental skills--hence their association with an older potty training age." But even if your goal is complete toilet independence.

including reduced rates of diaper rash. For instance. For more information. Regardless of your long-term goals. Sears et al 2002). With the right kind of preparation. More importantly. Bakker 2002). McKeith it can lead to late training--a problem if you prefer an earlier potty training age. Bakker et al 2002). Meanwhile. One study reported that an earlier potty training age--starting between 18-24 months--was associated with longer total training times overall (Schum et al 2002). you’ll see that many--if not most--signs can be encouraged or taught. you may help your child reach potty training age earlier. passive waiting does nothing to help your child get ready. it’s probably not good idea to wait passively for your child to exhibit the signs. “potty training age" means 24 months or beyond. Potty training after 24 months: Is it better to wait? For many American children today. most children did not show an interest in using the potty until after 24 months. an early potty training age does not lead to behavioral problems. Bakker 2002. urinary tract . And an earlier start can bring many benefits. If you review the official checklists. Schmidt 2004. and most kids couldn’t pull down their own underwear until they were over 29 months old (Schum et al 2002). For one thing. it makes sense to prepare your child for training (Canadian Pediatric Society 2000. see my article on what scientific studies tell us about the timing of potty training. Summing up: How does timing matter? Based on current evidence. Other research suggests that an earlier training helps to protect kids from developing bladder problems later in life (Barone et al 2009. Most fully-trained children aren’t ready to go to the bathroom unattended until 36 months or later (Gesell and Ilg 1943. “Staying dry for over 2 hours" took more than 26 months for half the children. Is this a good thing? Unfortunately. there hasn’t been much research on this subject. One recent study (tracking over 265 kids of potty training age for 12 months or more) found that children did not show many signs until after their second year (Schum et al 2002).

 are less able to articulate their needs.  cooperative (not going through a rebellious phase) . for example)  relaxed (not stressed by new changes. You can’t expect a baby to walk to a potty chair and remove her pants! On the other hand. they  have learned to ignore body signals and must relearn them  have become used to wearing soiled diapers and may resist change  are more independent and more likely to test your authority  have more odiferous urine. and stool toileting refusal. As a result. early training means basic training only. Bakker 2002. younger children  have fewer motor skills. like a move or new baby). Bakker et al 2002) The takeaway? If your child suffers from any urinary tract disorders (including incomplete emptying of the bladder and urinary tract infections). and  have more frequent bladder voidings (Gladh et al 2000. older children have spent more of their lives wearing diapers. On the one hand. making their accidents less pleasant to clean A late starting age might also put kids at an increased risk for developing problems with incontinence and infections (Barone et al 2009.infections. experts agree that you should wait until your child is  healthy (no diarrhea or constipation. Otherwise. Yeung et al 1985) This means that earlier training requires more adult supervision. Timing has profound implications for your goals and methods. it’s a good idea to pick an earlier potty training age (Bakker 2002). And for the youngest children. The training process itself may also take longer (Blum et al 2003). But this does not mean that a child’s age has no effect on the training process. It’s also important to match your toilet training goals to your child’s abilities.

1977. University of Antwerp. Pediatrics. and Nemeth N. Unpublished MD dissertation. 2004. getting rid of diapers--and potentially reducing the risk of urinary tract problems--is worth the trouble of an earlier potty training age. Relationship between age at initiation of toilet training and duration of training: A prospective study. Belgium. Bakker W. your choice of timing (as opposed to method) is unlikely to cause any long-lasting behavior problems. 2003. Results of a quaestionaire evaluating the effects of different methods of toilet training on achieving bladder control. van Sprundel M. Pediatrics. and Wyndaele JJ. van der Auwera JC. MA: deCapo Press. Schneider D. 2006). Infant Potty Basics. Lafayette. Toilet learning: Anticipatory guidances with a child-oriented approach. van Gool JD. 2000. 5: 333-5. Wyndaele JJ. 90: 456-461. Barone JG. References: Choosing the right potty training age American Academy of Pediatrics. Blum NJ. 2003. Changes in the toilet training of children during the last 60 years: the cause of an increase in lower urinary tract dysfunction? British journal of Urology. 2002. 2002. deVries MW and deVries MR. Department of urology. Taubman B. Jasutkar N. Brazelton TB and Sparrow JD. For some parents. British Journal of Urology. Bakker E. Paediatrics and Child Heath. 2006. 60: 170-177. J Pediatr Urol. Later toilet training is associated with urge incontinence in children. 5(6):458-61. Cambridge. 86(3):248-52. Boucke L. 111: 810-814. .Beyond this. For others. Canadian Pediatric Society. CO: White-Boucke Publishing. 2009. Research into the influence of potty training on lower urinary tract dysfunction. Toilet training readiness American Academy of Pediatrics website. (visited November 24. Toilet training the Brazelton way. the convenience of diapers overrides the potential drawbacks. Cultural relativity of toilet training readiness: A perspective from East Africa. 2000. Bakker E.

Sears M and Watts Kelly C. Does a profound change in toilet-training affect development of bowel and bladder control? Dev Med Child Neurol. 99: 54-58. Kolb TM. 1957. 2000. and Levin H. Gladh G. Secular trends and individual differences in toilet-training progress. Molinari L. Schum TR. Patterns of childrearing. MD. Sillén U. Maccoby EE. Contemporary Pediatrics. MA Little.. Child Dev Med. 2004.: Row. 2002. Sears W. Martin JA.Duong TH. Toilet training: Getting it right the first time. Brenner R. Simms. and Wolfensberger U. 2002. Taubman B. Beliefs about the appropriate age for initiating toilet training: Are their racial and socioeconomic differences? Journal of Pediatrics. Evanston. Underhill. Jansson UB. 2003. Verwijs W. Rao M. New York: Harper and Brothers. Sears RR. 48/49: 3-32. . Voiding pattern in healthy newborns. Pediatrics 109: 48-54. Ill. Maccoby EE. Hellström AL. Neurourology and urodynamics. How children become dry. and Waelkens JJ. Infant and child in the culture of today: The guidance of development in home and nursery school. 1996. 38: 1106-16. 149: 165- 168. Boston. Horn IB. Toilet training and toileting refusal for stool only: A prospective study. Urinary bladder control during the first 3 years of life in healthy children in Vietnam--a comparison study with Swedish children. RL and Lewis M. and Jaklin CN.[Bladder control in 1-4 year old children in the the Eindhoven and Kempen region (The Netherlands) in 1996 and 1966] Largo RH. 2006. 9(6 Pt A):700-6. You can go to the potty. 21: 105-119. 1973. Sequential acquisition of toilet-training skills: A descriptive study of gender and age differences in normal children. Schmidt BA. Persson D Mattsson S and Lindstrom S. Gesell A and Ilg FL. Regterschot GJ. Horstmanshoff BE. J Pediatr Urol. von Siebenthal K. Brown and Company. 1943. 1984. 1997. Journal of Pediatric Psychology 9: 457-468. Holmdahl G. 2013. McKeith R. Nieuwenhuis EE. King DR. 19: 177-184. Benninga MA. and Cheng TL. McAuliffe TL. Pediatrics. Peterson and Company.

CK. For that time frame. or potty training. and held there until they eliminated. One-year-olds were placed on the potty after meals.Yeung. CK. and even strapping the child to the potty were used to make sure she eliminated before leaving . with the expectation for being potty trained ranging from 12 months for some tribes in Africa[1] to 36 months in the modern United States. such ill-advised methods as enemas. 1995. requiring cooperation. I had every one of my kids trained by eighteen months. Chen CN. Duffy PG. Li AK. boys typically start and finish later than girls. 76:235-40. and the best potty training techniques emphasize consistency and positive reinforcement over punishment – making it enjoyable for the child. In some cases. It is easy for adults with grown children to forget the many accidents and regressions that almost certainly followed such early training. though training may start with a smaller toilet bowl-shaped device (often known as a potty). research suggests that children over 24 months train faster and girls train slightly faster than boys The Right Age to Toilet Train “Susan’s nearly three and still in diapers? Hmmm. Ransley PG.” Wouldn’t you like to have a nickel for every time you’ve heard a comment like this? Chances are that if you have been subject to such remarks.[2] Most children can control their bowel before their bladder. and they never even wet the bed after that. Cultural factors play a large part in what age is deemed appropriate. shaming. Godley ML. physical punishment. for instance. It is also true that toilet training was defined differently back then compared to how we view it now.[vague][3] Most people advise that toilet training is a mutual task. Ho. Some new insights into bladder function in infancy. however it depends on the maturity and consistency of the particular child. agreement and understanding between the child and the caregiver. is the process of training a young child to use the toilet for urination and defecation. they came from a member of an older generation who parented at a time when early training was popular. British Journal of Urology. The vast majority of studies concentrate on children 18 months old and older. and it usually takes boys longer to learn to stay dry throughout the night. Toilet training.

wait until she gets to a toilet. depend on a child-care facility or preschool that enforces a no-diapers rule. but may not yet have the physical skills needed to get to the potty and remove their clothing in time. and physiological developments that usually emerge only after about age eighteen to twenty-four months. and cultural attitudes than on a typical child’s readiness to control her bodily functions. One reason why toilet training was usually initiated during the first year in the United States until recently is that it reduced the workload of the caregiver. Children younger than twelve months not only are unlikely to be ready in terms of bladder and bowel control. or may come and go as your child grows. lower her pants. desires. and they may not occur until age two. In Finland and other northern European countries. initiating training before eighteen months is unlikely to do any damage as long as your expectations for your child’s performance are realistic and no punishment or abuse is involved. unfortunately. success still depended on the adult’s noting that it was time for potty use. The truth is that most popular assumptions about the best age to toilet-train—in this and most other countries—depend more on the adults’ needs. Toilet training this early is still common among families for whom disposable diapers or a diaper service is a major expense or who must. may start to expand quickly only at age two or three. and sit long enough to achieve success—depend on cognitive. The other skills that a fully toilet-trained child must acquire—the ability to recognize her own need to use the bathroom. But child-development experts now believe that toilet training works best for most families if it can be delayed until the child is ready to control much of the process herself. and keeping her there until she eliminated. emotional. Such procedures are based on conditioning rather than real learning—more like housebreaking a pet than helping a child achieve self-mastery. In many African and South American cultures. three. a positive attitude toward the training process. Her verbal abilities.the bathroom. or four. Even the social awareness that motivates some children to imitate their . physically placing the child on the potty. While the one-year-old may have eventually learned to connect sitting on the potty with urinating or passing stool. and the ability to manage any bathroom related fears are all part of emotional readiness. Generally speaking. where mothers and babies stay in almost constant physical contact and babies don’t wear diapers. There’s also the question of emotional readiness: The desire to use a potty. mothers “train” their babies from birth by positioning them over whatever place they wish them to eliminate into the moment they sense that the child is about to void. who had to clean many cloth diapers daily. children are traditionally placed on the potty after a feeding from infancy onward—and if the child happens to urinate or defecate while she’s held there. she is praised. which enable her to learn through conversation and instruction and to express any fears or anxieties that arise.

or when you foresee no major changes at home. In general. social. even toddlers can learn to use the potty quite easily during periods when their natural negativity has abated somewhat and they are highly motivated to learn. and only then beginning training. Since the fluctuations of a child’s development and her family’s situation are impossible to predict. it’s best to avoid assuming that your child will begin training by a certain age. looking for them in your child. and cognitive skills to begin training. regardless of your child’s age. Instead. Each of these aspects of development occurs at different times for different children. and you are the best judge of when your child has acquired enough of the necessary physical. . consider taking the readiness approach—reading about the telltale signs of readiness. the easier and quicker the process is likely to be since your child will have become more self-sufficient.siblings’ or playmates’ bathroom use increases steadily through the toddler years and into preschool. when you have time off work. Still. You or other members of your family may also find that you yourselves are better able to manage the training process at one time than at another —a period when you are not feeling particularly stressed. emotional. the longer you wait before beginning toilet training.