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Thursday, 24 November 2011 13:23

Potty Training - Potty or Toilet?

Choosing whether to use a potty to start toilet training or go straight to the toilet really depends on how your toddler reacts. There are pros and cons for both choices.
Choosing to use a Potty:
Handy and likely to be kept in the rooms where your toddler spends most of their time, so they can go to the 'potty' whenever the urge creeps up on them.
Small and manageable for your child
Can have multiple potties throughout the house
Your child can help you to choose it for them self and take some ownership of the potty.
Your child's feet will be touching the ground and this can make them feel more confident and comfortable.
Can be messy when emptying contents into the toilet
Your child will still have to make the transition to the toilet eventually
Choosing to go straight to the toilet:
Your toddler will already be familiar with you using the toilet
You make the transition to the toilet without the middle step of using a potty.
Easy to flush away the 'mess' rather than having to clean it out of the potty
Your toddler may feel more like a BIG KID by using the toilet like other members of the family.
Your toddler will not be so daunted about going to the toilet when out and about without their potty.
Toilet seat inserts are lightweight and portable.
Can be daunting
Flushing can frighten some kids
Requires parental assistance to get on and off
Potty features to look for:
If you do choose to use a potty here are a few things to look out for when buying your potty.
It should be large enough for your child to sit comfortably on by themselves, potentially for quite a long time.
The most simple potty will be made of plastic and be lightweight with no additional parts. These can be cumbersome when emptying contents into the toilet, but they have the advantage of being smaller and more portable for outings etc.
Additional features are cup inserts that can be removed from the potty chair and emptied into the toilet separately. These cups often come with a 'boys cap' that provides some extra spill protection.
For boys who have already been training for a while, you can buy a 'potty for boys' that hangs on the side of the toilet allowing them to learn to wee standing up.
Of course there are potties with all the bells and whistles. Some of these look like a real toilet with flushing sounds or even play music when your child does a wee. Your child may respond well to all of these features, but you will still need to make the transition to a regular toilet at some point in the future.