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What Age Should I Start Potty Training?
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Potty training! An inescapable task, if you’re a parent. When you are a new parent, it can be such a frightening experience. As a mother of a three year old daughter, I’m currently smack dab in the middle of it! In my opinion, of all the questions you ask about potty training, the first and probably most important question you should ask is at what age should I start potty training? While there is no perfect answer to this question, potty training your child should not begin until some very important factors are taken into consideration.  

MATURITY LEVEL You should make sure that your child has reached the right maturity level for potty training. A big mistake many parents make is starting too early.  If you pressure the child to potty train, and he is not ready, it can be very detrimental to the process. If your child follows basic instructions well, has the ability to pull his pants up and down, and shows some interest in using the toilet, it may be a good time to begin potty training your child.  

INTRODUCE THE CONCEPT  Before you take any steps to physically potty train your child, you should first introduce them to the concept of potty training. Buy a children’s book about potty training and read it to your child. Allow your child to come into the bathroom with you. Also, start introducing language for your child to use to describe the bodily functions (pee-pee, poop, etc.), and also the body parts they use for those functions.  

THIS IS NOT A COMPETITION  In trying to figure out what age to start potty training your child, it is important not to compare your child with other children. Please remember that every child is unique, and will progress in their own time. One child may be able to pick up the process right away, and hit the ground running, while it may take a different child several months before they actually get it. Speaking from experience, it has taken my daughter several months, but she is finally starting to show some progress in being consistent with going to the bathroom on her own.

BE PATIENT  The most important thing to remember with potty training your child is to be patient. At times, trying to potty train your child can be frustrating, difficult, and time consuming. Try to remind yourself that this is a brand new experience for your little one, and the focus should remain on making this transition as easy and positive as possible for your child.  

So, when should you start potty training? Is your child mature enough to begin the process? Have you introduced to them the concept of using the potty? If so, they may be ready. Now, ask yourself if you are ready. Remember, we owe it to ourselves and to our children to treat them as unique individuals, and allow them their own time to adapt to this new experience. For more potty training information, tips and techniques, please visit


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