So you have determined that your child is ready for potty training after reviewing our last blog post on potty training readiness. Now it’s time to go shopping for the gear you will need to get this potty started….
Potty Seat: First and foremost you will need a potty seat. There is lots of debate on whether to use a potty seat or go directly to an adult-sized toilet. Some parents don’t want to clean it, they think their child is too big for a potty chair or they don’t want to deal with transitioning to the big toilet. While we don’t think cleaning a potty is any different from the diapers you have been changing, we do notice that a lot of issues with constipation and resistant poopers starts with potty training on an adult-sized toilet instead of a potty seat. The potty seat is the right size for a little one (many 5 year olds can sit comfortably on a potty seat) and a child can get on and off very easily on their own. Plus it creates the right angle while seated, for easy and pain-free bowel movements. Lots of good reasons to start with a potty seat. So here are some of our favorites:
The Baby Bjorn® Potty Chair , Summer Infant® My Size Potty and Sesame Street® Elmo Potty Training Chair are all available on amazon.com
A Reward: Next, it’s reward time. Kids need a reason to stop pooping in their diapers and if you have determined that your child responds to praise, then find a reward that will encourage them in the potty training process. Lots of families are turning away from the traditional food or toy rewards for a host of reasons including the fact that they lose their effectiveness over time. Kids just realize that they can get their toy or candy fix at other points in their life. That’s why the pee-kaboo reusable potty training sticker™ works so well. The unique sticker goes INSIDE a portable potty and reveals a charming image ONLY when a child has a potty success. Kids are delighted by the surprise and excited to come back to the potty again and again. And because they created it, this reward has a much stronger effect than a reward that is handed to them. You can choose from the 4 designs below:
available at : www.peekaboopottysticker.com
Potty Training Books: Reading to your little ones is such a powerful way to teach them life's many lessons. And there is no shortage of board books for potty training. These are our tried and true favorites. All available at Amazon:
Underwear: There are lots of absorbent cloth training pants on the market . If you are a cloth diaper family, many of you can transition to your brands training pants. But to start, you may want to go with some low-cost brands from large chain stores. This makes it easier to toss out heavily soiled underwear if you need to. Here are our cloth favorites:
available at zoocchini.com
Hand Soap: Hand washing is a necessary part of good bathroom behavior. Make it fun by having your child sing the "Happy Birthday" song twice and substitute the word "Potty" for "Birthday." The Mayo Clinic states that this will help your child wash their hands for the proper amount of time. Babyganics plant-based hand soaps make sure your child's hands get soft, clean and chemical-free.
available at : babyganics.com
Drinking Cups: During potty training, you will want your child to drink a lot of water to increase the need for bathroom visits. The more visits to the bathroom, the more practice they get. The more practice they get, the more they understand how their bodies work and what you are asking them to do. In the spirit of keeping things fun, try one of these new sippy cups from Nuspin that will make taking another sip a little more exciting:
available at Nuspin Kids
Mattress Protection: Nighttime dryness is different from daytime dryness. It is a biological process that cannot be taught. It occurs naturally and can take place some time after daytime dryness is achieved. So a mattress protector is of utmost importance. The peapod mats® are the pads we recommend time and time again. They are soft to lie on, don't slip, no matter how much your little one tosses and turns, and they really absorbs moisture. In fact the mat is the only bedding you will have to wash if your child wets the bed. And it has many uses once your child can stay dry through the night.
available at peapodmats.com
Pull-Ups and\or Nighttime Diapers: While you may feel the urge to ditch all the diapers immediately. You are going to need some pull-ups for your first adventures out of the house. For naps and nighttimes you will also want to continue using a diaper. Choose absorbent diapers from your cloth diaper manufacturer or popular disposable brands like these:
Travel Potty: For trips out of the home you could carry a portable potty seat like the one you use at home or you can also try these travel-sized options.
The 2 in1 Potette is great for city dwellers who can't find a bathroom and it fits right under the stroller. The My Carry Potty is easy to put in the trunk of a car. Both available at amazon.com
And there is our roundup of your must-haves for potty training. Take your little one with you to buy the gear if you can. If you order online, put your child's name on the boxes and let them open them when they arrive at your home. Make them part of the preparation process so that they know that potty training is on the horizon. And let us know if there is a product you think we left out in the comments below.