Posted in HUMAN

Behavioral Toilet Training in Early Childhood: Research, Practice, and Implications

toilet trainingSuccessful mastery of toilet training in children is a major milestone and a key for independence for families with toddlers and preschoolers. Parents are able to rejoice for being free from frequently changing and buying diapers, plus children can also enjoy the start of their preschool lives for being fully potty trained and for learning how to use the toilet like grown-ups.

Mastery of potty training is the ultimate exhibition of children’s independence because, in order to start, the child should show a willingness to participate. It has to be a team effort between the parents and the child, and not a one-sided decision from the part of the parents otherwise it will likely fail in the end. To put simply, no matter how much begging, pleading, yelling or bribing the parents do, kids will not be trained for potty use until they are willing and ready.

Of course, for us adults, toileting is a simple task which we don’t even think about. But this task is only simple for us adults because we’ve done this countless of times and has become as part of our daily life activities. In reality, toilet training is a collection of different complicated skills and steps that is almost new to every young child.

How it happens

PottyTrainingFirst, kids have to learn and recognize the signals they feel on their bodies when they have to use the comfort room. These signals or sensations are needed to be felt in advance before it becomes urgent so that there is ample time spared for them to act on it. In short, children must learn to develop that self-control and appropriate skills needed to bring them into an appropriate comfort room, rather than just pooping or peeing wherever and whenever the urge hits them.

Before toilet training, they need to develop that physical skill where they can be able to remove their own clothes and sit comfortably and safely in the toilet. But it doesn’t end with that. As part of toilet training, children also have to learn how to aim and remain long enough at the potty until they’re finished by recognizing and responding to body signals that tell them if they’re done.

Next, they must learn how to clean themselves up and put all their clothes back on. They should master how to flush away wastes or alert their parents to empty their potty seats. And finally, children have to learn how to wash away the dirt on their hands as the last step before they can be concluded to be a fully potty trained child. If you are in the search for bidets, you can check the top toilet seats here.

What Research Tells About Proper Timing

toiletMany parents worry that early or late potty training will have harmful implications for their child. This idea has also been promoted by child-care professionals such as pediatricians. But the truth is that there is no scientific evidence that backs up if early toilet training negatively affects the child.

In the early 20s and 30s, parents impose a very strict potty training regimen on children even before they could barely walk. The techniques used were found to be coercive up to the point where children are abused during the process.

With previously conducted studies related to these, pediatricians argued that pushing kids into early potty training causes a variety of problems, such as bedwetting, stool withholding, regression and stool toileting refusal. But the new modern scientific study says that early childhood toilet training doesn’t cause harmful effects to the child. If you are in search of buying a new toilet, you can find the best ones on

potty training 2An American study (Blum et. Al 2003) directed parents to impose gradual and child-oriented approach to potty training regardless of the age of their kids are. The results showed that younger children who started early toilet training took longer to completely learn the task than those who have started at a later age between 18-24 months.

The evidence also showed that early potty training did not have any negative effects to the behavior of the kids, only that those who started at a later age learned potty training quicker than those who’ve started earlier. In general, this study by Blum implies that toilet training is more likely to become successful when started at an age when the child is ready to cooperate, thereby speeding up the training process.