How to potty train for nighttime

How to potty train for nighttime

Last updated on January 24th, 2023 at 05:10 pm

Imagine yourself as a parent staying up all night due to constant interruption of your sleep when your child wants to make use of the toilet. Or, at times, the need to change soiled diapers from urination and defecation. This can be pretty much tiring for you as a parent and also for the child. This is why potty training for children will always be regarded as an important milestone for your child’s growth. In this article, you will be guided on How to potty train for nighttime and be successful at it


How to potty train for nighttime

Signs that your child is ready for Potty training

No child walks up to their parents and demand, ”I want to be potty trained”. No, it is your duty as a parent to observe these signs your child begins to show them. These signs will give you a hint on whether it’s the appropriate time or not to start the training. In situations like this, as a parent, you cannot be too early or too late. That’s why you take note of signs like;

1. The age of your child

You have put into consideration the age of your child. However, training may begin shortly after birth in some cultures. However, in a developed world, training can occur between 18 months and 2 years old. It is crucial to note that some children may not be ready for the potty until they are approaching age 3 – which is okay.

2. Does your child communicate

Most children speak their first words between 10 -14 months of age. However, when your child is a year old and a few months old, they probably say one to three words. This is a sign that your child can be trained to communicate when he feels the pressure to poo or pee.

3. Has your child shown interest when you are going to the bathroom

This is a sign that your child is curious about what you do when you visit the bathroom. You can use that as an opportunity to start introducing potty training to your child.

4. Pulling down pants and underwear

When your child begins to pull down their underwear, that is a sign that your child is aware of the process that involves relieving themselves.

5. Goes to another room to pee or poo

In this situation, you have to show your child the appropriate place where such business can be done.
Having enough muscle to get on and off the potty is essential in potty training to avoid the risk associated with training, such as slips or failing toilet seats.


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How is Nighttime Potty Training different from daytime

There is a general misconception about how daytime potty should be the same as nighttime training. As a parent, it is not uncommon for you to feel frustrated when your child maintains dryness for most of the day and does otherwise at night.

However, when it comes to nigh-time potty training, it takes rigorous scheduled routines to accomplish.
Apart from that, nighttime potty training is mainly dependent on your child’s maturity. The organs of your child have to be ready to hold before you attempt nighttime potty training.

Younger kids have bladders and urinary organs that release their contents almost reflexively. By implication, nighttime potty training would be futile for them. This means for nighttime success, your child’s bladder size must be large enough to hold the urine produced all night long, or their brain must be mature enough to awaken with the urge to use the potty.

Generally, the age where this happens differs slightly between kids due to some factors. However, the range is often between the ages 2-4 and more frequently 3-3.5 years.
Therefore, nighttime potty training is more rigorous, and it requires that your child is matured enough to handle such expectations.

How to potty train for nighttime

When is your Child ready for nighttime potty training?

Being ready for potty training varies from one child to the other because it has to do more with your child’s developmental readiness. However, on average, it is usually a period of three to six months.

Therefore, you must be confident of your child’s daytime potty training before you start to train them at night. At the minimum, you should have given your child about 4-6 months of daytime potty training.
Potty training largely depends on your child is ready. It is also dependent on family preparedness. Of course, as parents, you will need to carve time to dedicate to this endeavor.

How long does potty train for nighttime take?

There is no specific time to how long nighttime potty training takes; it’s all a matter of your discretion as a parent. It takes just a few days for some kids, while for others, it takes much longer. Nobody knows the reason why it takes longer in some kids.

However, possible causes include heredity, a small bladder – not large enough to hold urine all night long – and the tendency for your child to sleep so deeply to respond to bladder signals. However, it is common to hear that potty training girls are easier when compared to boys. This is because girls show interest in toilet training as early as 18 months, while boys tend to take their time; they are not ready until age 2.
In addition, girls are more patient during potty training, and boys are typically anxious to hop off the toilet and end the lesson.

Nighttime Potty Training Tips For Your Child

Even after your child has successfully been potty trained during the day, don’t be surprised when they wet the bed while sleeping. Imagine how sometimes difficult it is for you as an adult to get up in the middle of a beautiful night’s rest to use the bathroom. Now, it will take two times of such discipline for your children to get up in the middle of the night. Helpful tips to navigate the night:

1. Limit your child’s intake of fluids after dinner

Kids tend to take in more liquid after dinner, especially when it isn’t water. Avoid giving them juice or any beverages when it’s close to bedtime. There’s a tendency that they will take in large gulps of it compared to water. Try to encourage them to drink more water during the day to compensate for the night. And it is close to bedtime; limit it to taking sips only. This is the primary key to controlling urine excretion at night.

2. Make going potty part of the bedtime

Just like telling stories is part of bedtime for your child, make using the potty part of it. The trick is to make sure practice is as close to bedtime as possible. This reduces the pressure on the bladder and decreases the chances of your child wanting to urinate in the middle of the night.

3. Use Waterproof Sheets

There are bound to be a few accidents during the process; make sure you give room for them. A waterproof sheet will help keep the bed from getting soiled and prevent making sleep uncomfortable for your child. Also, ensure you have an extra set of pajamas/change of clothes for your child.

4. Before your bedtime, wake them up!

This here is one of the most effective counter-measures most parents use since time immemorial. Right before your bedtime, wake them up to pee. This will easily flush out any liquid left between their bedtime and yours. Of course, there will be cases when they aren’t fully awake; try to lead them to the potty to avoid accidents like toilet slips and the likes.

5. Try lighting up the potty area or the path to the bathroom

Unlike adults, children find it very difficult to navigate places in the dark. Some are just plain scared of the night. All these may accumulate to a peak resistance to the pressure of their bladder. They could ignore the whole thing and accept to do it right on their beds. To avoid such situations, you need to light up the potty area in your child’s room or light up the path to the bathroom. That way, they overcome the fear of darkness and the problem of navigation.

6. Celebrate them

Make a big fuss out of it by using positive reinforcement when your child stays dry throughout the night. Also, try to incorporate using a reward system too. For example, you could try a change to special underwear with that child’s favorite superheroes or cartoon characters. Giving them a big hug and using kind words can also be of help.

Also read:

6 year old still not potty trained

Signs your child is not ready for potty training


Suppose it happens that your child takes more time to learn night potty training; avoid comparing them to other children. Remember, your child can’t always control when they wet the bed, so staying positive is important. Give it a break and keep trying again. If the issue of bedwetting continues after 7 months, you should take the next step to consult the pediatrician or a child care expert.

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