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After I potty trained my two oldest boys before the age of three with absolutely no issues, I thought I was an expert. Then number three came along, or Mayhem, as we lovingly refer to him. He has done an amazing job of teaching us that we are always learning and growing when it comes to parenting, and that we are not experts at anything.
Like with my oldest two, I started on the path to potty training at around two years old. But like most toddlers, he wanted nothing to do with anything that wasn’t his idea. After a lot of patience, persistence, and mini marshmallows, I can finally say that he is fully potty trained during the day. He’s got the routine down! However, we are still struggling with the nighttime accidents and bed-wetting, though we have found some ways to help make him more confident and have more dry nights and mornings.
Step 1. Limit liquids after 6:00 pm. When kids are trying to stall during bedtime, one of the most common things they ask for is a drink. Unfortunately, that increases the chances of them needing to use the bathroom right around the REM stage of sleeping, when it’s hardest to wake up. We had to start a “no drinks after dinner” rule, which helps with bed-wetting, and also helps streamline bed time in general, since they know drinks aren’t happening. It also helps to make sure they’re drinking mostly water, and less juices, soda, teas, and other sugary drinks, which tend to cause more frequent urination.
Step 2. Have a night light in or near the bathroom. Sometimes kids will hesitate to go to the bathroom at night if it’s too dark. Having a small dim light in the bathroom, or near the door to it helps give them the confidence to get out of bed and make that trek.
Step 3. Make sure there is a clear path to the bathroom. Tripping over a toy could mean the difference between making it to the potty and having an accident. Make it a family chore right before bed to pick up anything that might block the way between the bed and the bathroom.
Step 4. Ditch the pajama bottoms, and definitely no onesies. The more things that are in the way, the more likely it will be for your child to not make it to the toilet. A pajama top with underwear are perfect for nighttime potty training.
Step 5. Do a double check. Usually during the bed time routine, kids will use the toilet while getting ready for bed. Once they’re in bed, it’s story time, talking, praying, hugs and kisses, etc. Have them use the toilet once again as the very last thing they do before you leave them to fall asleep, to make sure they’ve completely emptied their bladder.
Step 6. Ditch diapers. This was a tip from our pediatrician when I was talking to him about how Mayhem used the toilet at home during the day, but diapers or training pants when we would leave the house, or at night. Switching between underwear and diapers is confusing. Switch to underwear 100% of the time and you’ll see your child’s confidence increase when it comes to staying dry.
When we agreed to ditch diapers completely, I was worried about bed time more than anything else. Day time accidents I could handle. I can carry around a week’s work of clean outfit changes if needed. But sleep is something I don’t get a lot of, and I was worried about having to get up multiple times each night to change sheets. Not to mention the whole water-rationing drought situation we have going on over here. Enter GoodNites TruFit into my life.
Though I found them in the “baby diapers” section of CVS, they are not diapers. They’re actual underwear, made with super soft fabric, but they have a secret weapon.
They’re super easy to use. Just tuck the disposable insert into the pocket inside the underwear, and they’re ready to wear. Not only do they give all-night protection against accidents, but they give the self-esteem boost of wearing “big boy underwear” to bed.
If an accident happens, just toss the disposable liner in the garbage, and the underwear are machine washable on their own. Everyone will sleep easy knowing they’re safe from bed-wetting.
You can sleep even easier by saving $4 off of your purchase of a GoodNites TruFit Starter Kit, with this Jebbit coupon. (Just answer 3 simple questions to get your savings.)