When it comes to potty training boys, my number one tip is to wait until they are ready to potty train to avoid a whole lot of problems. Worried about their age? Don’t be. Every child will potty train in their own time and toddler boys are no exception. Learning how to potty train boys is something that takes some practice and skill. After teaching my son how to use the potty, I wanted to share my best tips for potty training boys right away!
The Key to Potty Training Toddler Boys
The art of potty training isn’t really art at all. There are a bunch of different methods out there, but some pretty key principles to keep in mind. Every child is different, so what works for one child doesn’t always work for the next, which is why fantastic resources from other parents who have been there are so important. With that in mind, here is a little how-to guide for potty training boys!
How to Potty Train Boys
There are five key tips when learning how to potty train boys and they include:
- waiting for signs of readiness
- teaching him new tricks
- following his cues
- making it exciting
- helping him stay on track
We’ll dive a bit deeper into each of these tips for potty training boys down below!
1. Wait For Signs of Readiness
Potty training boys should never be forced to always watch for signs of readiness, which include: interest in the potty, telling you he has to go potty, refusing to wear a diaper, and wanting big boy underpants. This post has tons of info on the ready signs for potty training along with some tips for learning how to potty train boys and girls!
2. Teach Him New Tricks
Without pushing the subject, offer information about potty training to your son. Buy books and videos about potty training. Buy a small child-sized potty (nothing fancy, just a basic one that he helps pick out), and place it near the toilet in a bathroom you most often use so that your child can sit on their potty while you sit on yours if he chooses to. Some boys sit on the potty to go pee and poo before they transition to standing to urinate, while others may skip that step and be more comfortable standing like dad likely does.
Keep in mind that just because he’s a boy doesn’t mean he’ll necessarily potty train later than other kids (some boys potty train sooner than other kids). He also may be interested in the potty but then regress to the safety of diapers. It’s normal and comes with potty training. Learning how to potty train boys via books or posts like this will reassure you of this!
3. Follow His Cues
If you notice your child is showing positive feelings toward potty training, and expressing interest in trying to use the potty, start having him try to go potty when you need to go. Watch for any cues he may have that signal he’s about to go potty in his Pull-Up, and take him to the bathroom. Some parents like to also set a potty timer on their phone for the first week or two (trips to the potty every 30-45 minutes depending on your son’s bladder control). This is a great step to potty training boys!
4. Make it Exciting
Create a potty training reward system with your child. Some parents use food as a reward, but I recommend choosing something that’s more about time spent with you as a parent like a LEGO Duplo, tattoo, or toy car for each time he tries, and a whole set or trip to the movies if he goes potty for 5 days (doesn’t need to be consecutive). A potty chart or potty app on your phone can help make potty training successful, too. Some apps offer games for kids to play after they’ve unlocked levels by using the potty. For boys, working on aim can be fun, too. Put some Cheerios in the potty for your child to aim into, or add a colorant to the toilet water so that the color changes after he goes potty.
5. Help Him Stay On Track
As a parent, be mindful of the clothing you buy for your son now that he’s in Pull-Ups and underwear — stick with two pieces (no more onesies, overalls, or jumpers for a while). Making sure your son’s clothes support going potty (especially at the last minute) will save you on laundry. Also keep a lookout for bathrooms whenever you go out of the house, in case you’ll need to take your little one.
By the time you’ve accomplished steps 1-5 oh how to potty train above, you’ll be well on your way to potty training your boy, but there’s still more to do! Once he has daytime down, begin to teach him how to wipe himself. Most kids can’t reach well enough to do a super job of wiping, but it creates independence and is important for when he goes to school and won’t have help. (Interesting fact: I polled some moms and most said their child was nearly 6 years old before he or she could really wipe themselves well).
Do you have any potty training tips for boys? Share your experience in the comments!
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