Learning to use the toilet by themselves is an essential milestone for kids. Most kids begin practicing this dexterity between eighteen months and three years of age. On average, most children start potty training around twenty-seven months of age. In this article we will be emphasizing on nighttime potty training tips to help parents guide their child in successfully mastering this milestone.
What is the difference between nighttime and daytime potty training?
Nighttime and daytime potty training skills are two difference concepts, most of boiling down to biology. Potty training happens during the day, where children are conscious, and you can ask them to go to the toilet once you notice signs that they need to go.
Nighttime potty training happens at night. While you cannot teach a child to do something while they are not conscious, you can set them up for successfully staying dry throughout the night.
Being ready for nighttime potty training is entirely separate developmental phase than being ready for daytime potty training. Even kids who manage to stay dry during the day might not be developmentally ready to do so during the night.
And if you are looking for some motivation before you get started, you can visit One Proud Toddler which has compiled a great series of real life potty training stories to show how various parents helped their children master day and nighttime potty training.
When is the right time for starting nighttime potty training?
There is no specific guideline that dictates when the right age is for starting nighttime potty training since every child is unique and is physically ready at different stages.
Nighttime potty training involves development readiness, rather than chronological age. However, if you child can follow simple instructions, can physically to the bathroom on their own, get onto the toilet, and remains dry for at least two hours, it is a good indication that he or she is ready. However, it is advisable to start nighttime training sooner, rather than later.
You as parents must also be prepared and ready to allocate some time to dedicate to this exercise. Kids between the age of two and three years old are typically ready for daytime potty training. When they remain dry throughout the day or has the occasional accidents and managed to stay dry for a month or a few weeks without any issues during the night, they are ready.
Boys are often ready to start potty training later than girls are.
11 Nighttime Potty Training Tips
- Create a consistent potty training plan for daytime
Since your nighttime potty training typically stems from daytime potty training, it is vital to ensure they have a solid daytime potty training regime in place. Create a plan surrounding the individual needs of your child.
- Find out more about your family history
Speak to your parents and ask them about your nighttime potty training and when did you stop having nighttime incidents to give you a general idea. Bedwetting is something that tends to run in families.
- Implement going potty as a part of your child’s bedtime routine
Before bedtime, let your child visit the potty before going to bed and as soon as they wake up.
- Limit liquid intake at night
To avoid any incidents during the night, try to limit your child’s drinking in the evening after dinner, particularly sugary beverages, and juice. These beverages tend to bring more water into their bladders.
- Prepare yourself for some incidents
There are going to be a few accidents along the line. You can be prepared by using a waterproof mattress protector, a sheet, and another waterproof protector, followed by a top sheet. Always have some spare bedding on hand. When an accident happens, you can strip the top two layers and the bed is ready made. Use the spare bedding for those unexpected accidents.
- Waking your child up pre-emptively during the night
Some parents have success in doing this. It is almost like a dream pee. In one case, the parent woke up her child in the middle of the night to go to the toilet and then took her back to bed. After a week or so, she managed to hold her pee throughout the night or she woke herself to go when the need arose.
This approach is successful, permitted that your child easily goes back to sleep. For some, this might not work. Therefore, trust your instincts and do whatever works best for everyone involved.
- Wait with nighttime potty training until your child wakes up dry
If you start too early, your child might not be ready yet. If you wait until your child’s pull-up remains dry for a few weeks in tow, there is not much you will have to do when potty training commences.
- Follow your child’s lead
Some children let their parents know as soon as they are ready. In some cases, you do not have to wait for dry nappies because your child will know when he or she feels ready. It is important to follow their lead and see what happens.
- Do not stress too much about it
Sometimes it can take some time for kids to transition from daytime potty training to nigttime training. Do not stress too much about it. It is best not to force the issue. Once your child is ready it will happen. If it takes longer to happen, do not blame yourself. Never compare your child to those of others. Every child is different and reaches certain milestones once they are ready.
- Celebrate your child’s victories
When you notice your kids stays dry throughout the night, do not be shy to express positive reinforcement. You can even offer a reward if he managed to stay dry for more nights. For instance, saying that you will buy him special underwear with some of his favorite movie or cartoon characters to motivate him.
- Realize when there is cause for alarm
Even though it is commonplace for children to continue bedwetting up until the age of five years, if the issue persists beyond this age, there might be an underlying cause.
Something to look at is any major changes in the household, for instance family problems, divorce, starting at a new school or a new baby. Even subtle changes can sometimes be the reason for the regression. It is also recommended to take him to his paediatrician to ensure there are no behavioral or health issues.
We hope this article was helpful and that these nighttime potty training tips will assist you and your child to reach this essential milestone successfully.