Potty Training Regression

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Potty training regression is not the same as potty training accidents. Accidents will happen regularly, as your child first learns to use the toilet. It is a process and will take a while. We talk about regression when a child who has been seemingly potty trained suddenly has accidents or declares a willingness to go back to wearing diapers again.

Cause of potty training regression 

The most common cause of regression is stress. The training itself may cause the tension, but there is a high chance it is about something else - anything else: changing the routine, new situations like travels, someone else visiting your house, new baby-sitter. Also, the family conflict that you think your baby hasn’t even noticed.

Another thing may be bad timing. It is possible you’ve misread the signs earlier, and your baby was never ready to start the training in the first place. 

What to do?

Stay calm

Of course, you are frustrated, but you need to remind yourself that a period of regression is standard and it can be fixed - sooner or later.

Never punish

Punishing your child for bed-wetting or any related accidents is never good. Especially if the reason is stress - you just make it worse. Bed-wetting, in particular, isn’t exactly under your child’s control. Punishing for setbacks may cause your child hiding or trying to not poop or pee at all to avoid punishment.

Reinforce training

If it worked before - it may work again. You can reinforce that with some set times to sit on the potty. Try before nap time or after bath and make it a strict part of the routine. 

The good news: In most cases of regression, your child should pick right up where she left off in a few days or weeks. If you need more help - check out my How to make your child love going potty book. Fingers crossed, you can do it!

Susan Urban