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24.01.2014
Parents often complain how difficult potty training a child can be, but for most this is a fairly easy experience, if the child is ready. This is however not always the case for a child that has special needs, potty training may be allot more difficult, but achievable. Children with physical disabilities may have other problems with potty training, like getting on or off the potty, getting undressed and cleaning up afterwards. Developmental If your childA’s development is delayed in any area, the chances are it is delayed here too. Again, rather look at your child's developmental age, and decide whether the time is right to train. Emotional Don't push toilet training to hard on your child as some may find training intimidating. Temperamental Children who find change and conflict to be stressful, might find potty training to be overwhelming. The readiness checklist can help you decide if your child is ready to begin the toilet training process. Some of the items on the list may not apply to your child, the more items that do apply; the more ready is to begin training. Finally you and your child are ready to start "potty training boot camp.The first thing to do is take your child with you, to go and buy a potty. When you get home, let your child take the potty and put it in the bathroom, explain to him that this is where he needs to come to urinate.
Start off by letting your child sit on the potty with their clothes on, while you sit on the toilet.Remeber, they learn from and copy, you.
If they become restless, you can read a story to keep their mind off what they are doing, and this will start to establish a potty routine. When your child has become comfortable with the potty, you can start taking off their nappy and letting them sit on the potty.
You may also have to show them, by taking a bowel movement from their nappy and placing it in the potty, they will begin to realise that is where it belongs.
If you meet resistance to any of these steps, back up to where your child feels comfortable and don't move on for a couple days, until he is ready. Once the above steps have been mastered, start reminding your child to go potty every hour.
You can show your child that you are disappointed, but never shout, punish or make a big deal of it. Tell them that's it ok, but to remember to go to the potty quickly when they feel the urge to urinate. Night time training should only begin when your child can stay dry during nap time, or for more than 6 hours during the day.
Place a non-absorbency cloth in their nappy and they will learn to become aware when they are wet. Make the toilet training process fun, reward your child every time he uses the potty successfully and stays dry.
There are also many products available on the market, like potty training charts or potties that play a tune when your child urinates.


For many children it is difficult to actually reach the toilet in time, and then to get onto the toilet due to physical challenges. You may have to help your child onto the toilet, positioning onto the seat or even holding them in position whilst on the toilet. There are adaptations that can be made to the bathroom, to help a child with physical disabilities sit on a toilet.
For older children there are raised seats, and safety rails to help with positioning and stability. Either straddling or sitting sideways on the toilet seat, can provide more stability, and make your child feel more secure when using the toilet or potty. When communication is a problem, it is much easier to actually show your child what needs to be done, and let him learn through watching other family members, using the toilet. When I was a preschool teacher {back before I had children of my own} I couldn’t understand how children older than three were not potty trained yet. I really wish it hadn’t taken so long to potty-train Jacob but this was my first kid and I had no clue what I was doing {not that I have any clue now but at least I have a bit of experience}. 8) Consider using a special kind of training pant that lets the child feel when they have peed. I hope the above steps have helped give you some ideas as you try to potty-train your child with Special Needs.
If you are wanting to use pull-ups, Walmart has Huggies on rollback right now in stores and online for $8.97 a package! An area where the child has the upper hand is probably not one you want to take on when control is an issue.
They will help you set goals, and find easy ways to make them obtainable, in a realistic period of time. Some children develop skills quicker and some children take longer to develop skills and potty-training is no exception to that rule. I had this idea that a sticker chart and a lot of encouragement along with making him sit on the toilet every 30 minutes were the keys to potty training success.
He still wasn’t ready and I decided at that point to wait until he was realizing he had to go before trying again. My first attempts at potty-training were before I suspected any special needs and I think if I would have known then that he had Sensory Processing Disorder I would have waited until I thought he was ready and saved both of us a lot of time and frustration.
Lucas has SPD like Jacob but, along with having that, he also has Autism Spectrum Disorder and significant language delays. Your child needs to realize that they have have soiled themselves before they are even ready to start potty training.
Even if they start peeing on the floor and you grab them and sit them on the toilet and they finish the rest in the actual toilet bowl…that’s a victory!
The Huggies Pull-Ups feature a favorite character, Lightning McQueen from Disney Pixar’s Cars movie, which makes wearing them exciting. I can completely relate to you when you talk about your ideas about potty training and lazy parents, until you had your own kids!
Here I am years later ashamed that I ever thought that and realizing how wrong I was in judging them.


Many young children with Special Needs, and many without as well, need to know what is coming up so they can mentally prepare themselves for the task. Some children are visual learners and pictures will help greatly so they can see each step of the process. For some it may be extra time with a favorite toy or electronic, like my boys and their tablets or trains.
Since he still wears a pull-up to school these help because then the teachers don’t have to take off his shoes and pants to change him.
I think this one in particular would be great for children with SPD or Autism because they can feel when they are wet with these more so than with an ordinary pull-up. My oldest wasn’t potty trained until he was almost four and my youngest is three and a half and not even close to being potty trained. Not only was he not realizing he had to go, but he wasn’t even realizing that he was wet or had a dirty diaper. At three and a half he doesn’t notice when he is wet yet and only occasionally seems to even notice if he has a poopy diaper.
For children who are semi-verbal maybe they can learn one word that they can use to tell you that they need to go to the bathroom.
They aren’t going to be potty trained over night but instead, there are going to be a lot of small victories on the road to potty-training success. We also sing random songs I’ve made up, which Lucas really likes because he loves music.
As frustrating as it can be for parents, try not to get frustrated with them because that will just make the process harder for everyone involved.
He has outgrown some issues because he’s been in some great schools with some great teachers. One thing I have done in the past is put old McDonald Happy Meal toys into a basket and if they went on the potty they could play with one. Yeah, I think it’s true because I feel the judgment when people realize my child in pull-ups is in preschool and no longer a toddler. I figured this would be the easiest way for him to go to the bathroom if he all of a sudden felt he was starting to pee in his pants and could get to the bathroom.
The first weeks were full of constant reminders and multiple accidents but a month or so later he was fully potty trained and he moved on to underwear.
With Lucas I feel more confident in my parenting and accept the fact that people may judge me but I don’t care because I now know that I am doing what is right for my child and for my family instead of trying to pressure him to fit. Since these toys had been put away it was like they got a brand new toy and I didn’t have to go out and spend extra money on them. It didn’t take long once he was completely ready, and I wish I had saved us all that stress! Some things with him will always remain, like how to calm him down when he’s really upset and hurt.



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