Parents delay children’s development because of stress and laziness

A fifth of parents keep their children in nappies long past their third birthday, finds new study

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The stress of easing children out of nappies, dummies and bad habits, leads parents to put off developmental goals long past the average age, a new survey reveals.

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The study of 1,196 parents with children aged between 3 and 10 years, has found that 20% kept their children in nappies until the age of 3 ½ while a further 17% still allowed their children to take a dummy to bed at age 4.

But parents have their reasons for not encouraging their toddler  onto the next developmental stage. Around half said the stress caused trying to wean their child out of baby habits was the main problem, although 9% did admit to simply being “lazy”.

That said, 31% were keen to encourage their child’s progess at the earliest opportunity while 27% only muted their encouragement in an attempt to keep their child’s “baby qualities” for as long as possible.

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To find out the ideal age for potty training and how to do it, check out our essential guide. And if your little one just won’t give up her dummy, try some tips from other mums on our forums.

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