Toddlers: 24 Months+

Need the low down on Potty Training

I'm going to start potty training my daughter in September. We just moved her into a big girl bed and I figured I would give her a month to get her comfortable with that change. So I have a lot of questions on potty training since I have never done this before.

For the potty chair should I get one of the ones that go on the floor or a stool with the seat on the normal toilet? How do you clean out the floor ones? I know you would dump the pee/poo in the toliet but then rinse it out and where? Please recommend your potty chairs as well.

For wiping do you use toliet paper or those disposable/flushable wipes?

For underwear are you doing nomal big girl/boy underwear during the day then pull ups at night? Or pull ups throughout the day/night? I'm not sure what I should do with this part at all.

Please give me any other tips or recommendations on how to go about this process & any book recs/dvd recs that would be good for the both of us.

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Re: Need the low down on Potty Training

  • Summer '11 (2.5) 

    We put the portable potty chair downstairs. We used disposable wipes to wipe it out, after using soap/water from the sink (since the top comes out). I like both the Fisher Price Precious Planets one and the Baby Bjorn. I prefer the FP a little more.

    We also got a small stool and toilet ring for upstairs. He still uses them. 

    During the day, I put him in underwear. The first day was the worst, but by the 2nd day we ventured out. Make sure to pack a ton of underwear and spare outfits. His took his naps in the underwear, etc.

    Nighttime, we had him in pull-ups. This worked great for us since we leave our house by 6:30 AM and I didn't want to deal with accidents.

    Summer '12 (3.5)

    We switched to 100% underwear. I made sure I got a vinyl mattress cover. He has accidents, but it's worth it. 


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  • For us, this is what has worked:

    We got a potty chair because our toilet is a little taller than normal, and we wanted DD to be able to use the potty on her own if needed.  I don't know the brand, but DD picked it out at Walmart - it's pink and has the Disney princesses on it.

    To clean it out, I dump it in the toilet.  I rinse it out using the sink and dump it in the toilet.  At night I do a thorough cleaning/disinfecting.

    For urine, we use toilet paper.  For bowel movements, we use wipes.

    Personally, I think pull ups are glorified diapers and I think most kids know they are diapers and it's ok to use the bathroom in them.  But, I know pull ups work for some people.  So, whatever floats your boat. Smile We just used Gerber training pants all day, including naptime.  I made sure to start listening closely around the time DD would normally wake from nap so I could be sure to get her to the potty in time.  We still use diapers at night, as she sleeps 11+ hours, and I feel that is too long to make her hold it in.

    I didn't really read any books or anything, just talked with other moms and kind of did what worked for us.  I made a commitment to stay home and do nothing but potty train for 3-5 days.  The first 2 days I made DD sit on the potty every 20-30 minutes.  We sat there for a few minutes.  If she went, great, she got a couple M&Ms (3 for #1, 5 for #2).  If not, that's ok, we'll try again in 20 minutes.  If she had an accident, I got her cleaned up and talked to her at the same time about how we go pee and poop in the potty and not in our panties.  We had only accidents on Day 1.  By mid-morning Day 2, she got the concept of peeing in the potty.  By the afternoon of Day 3, we ventured to the grocery store (and used the potty there 4 times!).
    We still have accidents.  She tends to forget she has to go while at daycare, so there are a couple accidents a week there.  But she's been pretty great at home.

    Good luck!

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  • We use a potty ring on the regular toilet. She can't use it independently yet, but I would rather have to spend 2 minutes helping her go then clean a separate little potty, especially since she usually needs my help to wipe and wash hands anyway. We got ours at Target, I don't remember the brand but they had several different character rings. Ours is Sesame Street, which was a big motivator to her in the beginning.

    We use toilet paper for wiping 99% of the time. I did get flushable toddler wipes for messier poops, but we rarely have to use them.

    We went right to big girl underwear during the day, have never used pull ups, but she wears a diaper for naps and night still. She is very aware that she wears underwear when she's awake, diaper when she sleeps, and she gets very excited when she wakes up with a dry diaper, but the few times we've tried to go diaperless at nap she's had accidents and then regressed during the day, so we are waiting a while before trying again.

    I didn't really do a lot of reading or research on potty training before starting. DD1 showed an interest in sitting on the potty, so we encouraged it. We did use sticker charts (1 sticker for pee, 2 for poop) and she got a prize after a set amount of stickers, with a bigger prize for filling the chart. It worked great for us, but doesn't for every kid. 


    Mama to two sweet girls
    DD1 Feb 2010
    DD2 Sept 2011

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  • Another thing to add, reward system. Every time, he went successfully, we would put change in his piggy bank. After a month or so, he earned his prize (he picked it out himself).
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  • We use the baby bjorn potty seat, we have one for each potty. I used one of those little removable hooks and hang it right under the toilet paper holder. Both girls know how to put the potty seat on and off themselves. 

    I was totally grossed out by the idea of cleaning out a little potty, and heard about kids who had issues switching from the little potty to the big potty, so we have only ever used the potty ring. It has worked great for both kids.

    We tried pull ups for a little just to start her off, then switched to underpants. She stays dry all day, we are working on pooping on the potty. She usually has accidents with that, but its a start. We have found it easier for her and us, if we put her on the potty rather than waiting for her to tell us she has to go. Every hour or two, or before we leave the house she sits there. Usually something happens, sometimes not.

    At nap time I put a pull up on but over the underpants (this is also what we do if we are going to have a plan ride or long drive). She usually stays dry then too. At night she is in a pull up without the undies as she always wakes up wet. We will cross that bridge when we come to it. 



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