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🚽 Toileting Tips

Updated: Mar 16

Learning to use the toilet can be challenging for children 🚽.

The task of toileting involves many steps and skills 🧻🚽🧼 . Therefore, it can be particularly challenging for children with additional needs and therefore take a long time. Every child is different, however, here are some ideas/tips to think about when you and your child starts the toileting journey!

Occupational Therapists can help families achieve toileting goals, please reach out to us if you have any questions or are interested in support! 😊

Sit for 6

Set a goal for 6 toilet sits per day. At first, trips will be short (as little as 5 seconds per trip), with one longer trip each day to work on bowel movements. Over time, toilet sits can be long (e.g., 5 minutes). Setting a timer or singing a song can be a helpful way to let your child know when the toilet sit will end.


Make toilet trips part of your everyday life. Plan toilet trips around your usual routine and try to embed trips during times of natural transitions. Stick with the same time of the day or the same daily activities.

Include Them

Have your child put waste from the diaper/underwear in the toilet when possible. This will also help your child understand that waste goes in the toilet. Have your child flush the toilet and wash hands after each diaper change.

Consider Sensory Needs

If your child does not like certain sounds, smells, or things he or she touches in the bathroom, change these as much as you can. Try having lavender scents in the bathroom, or dimming the lights. Provide a fidget toy to keep their hands busy.

Have Underwear Ready!

During toilet training it is important for children to wear underwear during the day. They need to feel when they are wet. Your child may wear a pull-up over underwear if necessary. Diapers or pull-ups may be used when your child is sleeping or is away from the home.

Keep Trying!

They say it takes 3 weeks to make a habit. Once you outline the routine and methods, keep working towards the same goal for 3 weeks. Keep in mind, this can take longer for children with additional needs.

You got this!

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