Signs A Child Is Not Ready For Potty Training

Signs Your Child Is Not Ready For Potty Training

In The Comprehensive Guide To Potty Training and in The Comprehensive Guide To Timing: Knowing When To Potty Train, we discussed the readiness factors parents should observe in children before initiating potty training efforts. While parents have the best intentions and want to ensure their child is reaching important milestones and not falling behind their peers, this can lead to an unhealthy obsession with age and starting potty training based solely on how their child compares to others. Age should never be the sole consideration for starting potty training. The presence of readiness signs, as discussed in The Comprehensive Guide to Timing are the most important considerations. Additionally, we have included the signs that a child is not ready for potty training, to help parents know when it's a bad idea to initiate training and any efforts will likely be unsuccessful.

Signs that your child may not be ready for potty training:

  • Age: It's recommended to wait until your child is at least 22 months according to some and 27 months old according to others before starting potty training.
  • Dryness: Your child can't stay dry for at least two hours.
  • Bowel movements: Your child doesn't have soft bowel movements, which could indicate constipation.
  • Trouble following directions: Difficulty following simple instructions
  • Interest: Your child doesn't seem interested in using the toilet.
  • Diapers: Your child always uses diapers for bowel movements.
  • Communication: Your child can't communicate when they need to go, either verbally or through sign language.
  • Pants: Your child can't pull their pants down independently.
  • Easily Distracted: Your child has difficulty focusing on one thing at a time.
  • Accidents: Your child has more than a couple of accidents a day.
  • Difficulty Sitting: Your child has trouble sitting for long periods of time.
Its normal for parents to want their child to be successful and reach the important milestones on time. However, parents need to be careful not to initiate potty training too early or their efforts will backfire. By ensuring that the readiness signs are present and there are not any of the signs that indicate the child is not ready, parents can ensure the greatest chance of a successful potty training efforts with fewer problems.   
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