If you're stumbling into the paradox that is potty training, you've likely done your share of research to get things, err, flowing. With all the information available via the internet, choosing a method that works best for your toddler, and your sanity, is easier said than done. If your personal goal is to have your toddler going to the bathroom regularly by the weekend, though, there are a few techniques on how to potty train in three days, according to experts, to get this "potty" started. Thank the pee gods, my friends.
While potty training in three days might sound impossible, Laura Jenson, author of 3-Day Potty Training, tells Parenting that you should prepare to dedicate three full days to mastering this particular potty training technique. To do this, she adds, you should plan everything ahead of time — including, but not limited to, how you'll handle household chores and meals — so you can focus on spending time with and bonding with, your toddler. If you have older children, you might want to plan places for them to go, or things for them to do, while you devote your three days to your potty trainee.
To effectively potty train your toddler in three days, you should begin facilitating ongoing conversations about what's going to happen weeks before actually starting. The more prepared your toddler feels for what's about to happen, the higher their likelihood of success. Jenson says that on the morning of the first day, immediately after your child wakes up, you should change whatever diaper they're in and have them help by actually saying "goodbye" to it. Then you should change your toddler into an old, oversized t-shirt, and let them know they won't be using diapers anymore. Let them know that if they need to go to the bathroom, they should go to the potty. It may not sink it right away, but remember: consistency is key.
Afterwards, you should offer food and drink, and accompanying your toddler to the toilet in hopes that they're ready to give it a try. The trick, Jenson repeats, is continuously offering liquids, not leaving the house, and taking them to the toilet multiple times during those three days. As the day comes to a close, you shouldn't offer any drinks post-dinner and make one last bathroom stop before bed. You can also wake up your toddler throughout the night, just to keep things consistent during the learning phase (just as you might with a new puppy). If your child has an accident, don't panic; it's part of the deal.
According to Mom Junction, you should't attempt this three-day trial when your child is obviously stressed. You'll want to talk about the potty well beforehand, too, so this substantial change doesn't catch your little one off guard. You should also have all your supplies on hand prior to starting this three-day potty training period. The same site suggests you give it a "trial run," meaning you take the tine to go through the motions for about a two hour span, just to see how your toddler reacts. It might help to sit alongside your little one and on your potty, cheering them on and showing them that going to the bathroom isn't scary.
While the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends starting this journey at, or around, 2.5 years of age, there's no exact "right age" to begin potty training. It all depends on your child's specific developmental milestones. Having said that, you shouldn't try the three-day method, or any other potty training method, before age 2, or you risk the chance of only frustrating yourself and your toddler. Dr. Heather Wittenberg tells Pull-Ups to look for potty readiness signs ,such as pulling at a soiled diaper, hiding to "go," a sudden interest in others going to the bathroom, changing dry diapers more often (which can mean they're holding it longer), waking dry from a nap, or verbal cues telling you they need to go to the bathroom.
Though Psychologists Nathan H. Azrin and Richard M. Foxx have their own potty training formula that was popular back in 1974 — Toilet Training in Less Than a Day — there's no need to put that kind of pressure on you or your toddler. And if the three-day method feels overwhelming, or you and your toddler feel frustrated at the lack of progress, it's OK. Rest assured, your child will use that toilet when they'r ready, and way before it's time to send them to high school.
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