Secrets to successful potty training

Help with potty training for toddlers


Did you know that to get to grips with toilet training properly, your toddler needs to understand and perform a whole series of tasks, from recognising when he needs the loo to getting there in time? That’s an awful lot for a little person to take in – no wonder it takes some time! What’s more, even if you’ve potty trained older children perfectly well before, you’re not guaranteed to sail through it next time around – every child is different. Or your child might have attained potty perfection at 1½, but at 4, she may still be in nappies at night. Whatever stage your child’s at, we’ve got expert mums’ advice to help make the potty-training process easier, so you can achieve the ultimate outcome – a happy child and a nappy-free home.


‘Make sure you potty train when your child’s ready. I trained Ed when he was almost three and he did it really quickly because it was the right time and he was old enough to understand my instructions.’

Victoria Sharman, 35, mum to Toby, 3 months, and Edward, 4

‘I half-heartedly attempted to train Oscar, using a small, plain white potty. Not surprisingly, putting that boring, uncomfortable – and empty! – potty on his head was the only thing he thought it was good for. So I replaced it with a luxury musical one. Now we’re having much more success – and fun!’

Danielle Nathan, 33, mum to Oscar, 2

‘I didn’t see the point of the potty, given that we have a perfectly good loo, so I tried to make Olivia go straight to the toilet. She had other ideas – it was too much of a change for her. She much prefers the potty for now and I’m not going to rush her.’

Annalisa Smith, 34, mum to Olivia, 2

‘I found it difficult to remain calm when Phoebe had mishaps because I felt frustrated that it was taking her much longer to train than her sister. But Phoebe became anxious and reluctant to use the potty, so I made a real effort to be positive, patient, encouraging and relaxed, and it did the trick.’

Susie Bowles, 38, mum to Phoebe, 2, and Grace, 5


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