Potty Training a Special Needs Child

by Adriana Vermillion, The Potty Whisperer

Potty training a child is difficult under any circumstances, however before you can begin potty training, 

we suggest you take their abilities and delays into consideration if your child has special needs.
This may seem like a daunting task and if you worry about your child, believe he or she will take a long time to toilet you will be train if you take your time and prepare your child you can achieve potty training success!
The first step in potty training is to familiarize yourself with the basics behind the task. 
When you've got those basic concepts down (and I'm sure you're already aware of which tactics will work for your special child and which won't), you'll be ready to decide if your child is ready to begin potty training.

When Is My Child Ready to Begin Potty Training?

There are a few signs that will let you know that your child is physically ready for potty training, however with the right preparation and training your child can start training at any time. For example, you may notice that your child's diaper stays dry for about two hours at a time during the day, their bowel movements come at regular times, and (usually) they stay dry through the night.
For normally developing children this will usually happen between the ages of two and slightly after their third birthday.
But it's important to remember that children with special needs move at their own pace and forcing potty training on a child who just isn't developmentally ready will not only be a waste of time, it will also be a horrible experience for both you and your child.
How will you know when your child is developmentally ready for potty training? Here are some signs to look for...

  • Your child can follow two-step instructions
  • Your child can communicate a need to go
  • Your child can imitate others
  • Your child is willing to cooperate
  • Your child shows a need to be independent
  • Your child can get to and from the toilet independently
  • Your child is aware of wet or soiled diapers
  • Your child is able to pull pants down and maybe even up
  • Your child is able to sit on the potty for 5 minutes without help
Of course, not all kids will be able to do all of these things, but you should have a good feel that your child is on the right track developmentally to handle potty training. If you feel your child is both physically and developmentally ready to begin potty training, then it's time to get started!

Adriana Vermillion is the Founder and CEO of P.O.T.T."Y" Generation®, The Potty Whisperer™, a Lead Trainer and Parenting Coach with over sixteen years of experience in potty training special needs children and coaching parents. Adriana is a freelance writer, author and a frequent motivational speaker available for your event at www.adrianavermillion.com

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