Oh the joys of potty training a toddler. On one hand, you're desperate to be done with diapers and the freedom of letting your kid use an actual toilet sounds pretty appealing. Conversely, as much as you are looking forward to being done with diapers, you're probably dreading the actual potty training process. But before you begin the actual process of buying underwear and drawing up a sticker chart, you should educate yourself on the toddler underwear mistakes you might be making, because planning ahead can work in your favor when it comes to potty training.
Teaching your child to use the "big kid" potty comes with its fair share of challenges. The process looks differently for each family, but these "mistakes" are pretty universal and luckily, avoidable with a little bit of forethought.
If you have a soon-to-be-potty-trainee in the house, take these tips into consideration before taking the plunge and buying that first pack of tiny underwear (even though, yes, they're incredibly cute.) Potty training isn't a walk in the park, but with a little (or a lot) of effort the first pair of underwear your buy for your little one might be the starting point of their journey into a diaper-free life.
1. You Put Them In Underwear Before They're Ready
Parents noted that waiting for the "right moment" to buy your kid their first pair of underwear is key. They'll likely be very excited about it, but if they haven't show any of the signs that they're ready to be potty trained, the underwear won't do much good. Wait until your little one tells you they have to go poop or pee, takes off their diaper constantly, wakes up mostly dry in the morning, and shows other signs of potty training readiness.
2. You Wait Too Long To Make The Switch
On the other hand, waiting too long to get them in toddler underwear will likely backfire too. What To Expect noted that most toddlers have a "window of opportunity" where they're both willing and excited to try potty training. Buying them their first pair of underwear long after they've been exhibiting the "signs of readiness" mentioned above will likely mean that they'll be disinterested in potty training for the time being.
3. You Care About The "Gender" Of The Underwear
This one is big. A piece from The Huffington Post went viral after one mom confessed that she bought boy's underwear for her daughter. Aside from the obvious stereotyping that goes on in kid's clothes (yes, even their underwear), the quality generally is much better for boy's underwear. If your daughter loves super heroes and comfortable underwear, don't hesitate to walk right past the Princess Elsa underwear and pick up a pack of Capitan America.
4. You Buy Too Much (Or Not Enough) Underwear
It can be tempting to go overboard when you buy toddler underwear for the first time. You're probably imagining endless accidents and messes, so endless backups are necessary, right? In reality, however, you'll probably only need a few packs of underwear for your kiddo. If they have an accident, a back up pair is definitely important, but you can always throw the dirty ones in the laundry and wash them just as quickly.
5. You Potty Train Them Fully Clothed
I'm a huge believer in naked potty training — or at least underwear only. Baby Center called it the "bare bottom method," and in it, you let your toddler run around the house in only their underwear or totally naked. They'll become more aware of their body's urge to go potty, and know when they have accidents,. It's supposed to be much quicker than letting your child stay in a diaper while you potty train, and it lets them get used to the new underwear they've been so excited to wear.