Potty Training A Baby, They Potty Trained at What Age?!
Awhile back I read a potty training age statistic that absolutely shocked me about potty training a baby and it’s what has inspired me to write this article (and tell my tails of potty training my then 8 week old). Unfortunately, I can’t relocate the original source I found this in , but it stated that the average age for potty training around the world is 6-8 months! Potty training in other cultures begin within just weeks of birth!
This blew my mind 🤯😵! I always thought potty training at 1 year was crazy early, even 18 months is still considered early. In fact, this article shares the other day that said the average age for potty training in the United States has continued to get pushed back since the 1970s when the average age to potty train was around 17 months to now around two years and a few months! Why? Let’s take a look under the hood to understand.
Potty Training a Baby in Kenya and Iran
Here in the US about 50% of children are fully potty trained by age 3. In Kenya, parents begin to potty train a baby as early as 4 months of age! In communities in Kenya that do not have access to diapers. Parents work with children as young as possible to potty train because it is necessary. In Iran, parents work very hard to have their children completely diaper-free by 12 months.
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Typically, potty training in other cultures introduce a sound that associates potty training with this noise. A community in Kenya uses hissing or shhhh noises, while in certain areas of Vietnam, they whistle while the baby deficates.
Potty Training a Baby in China and Africa
For potty training in China, the traditional clothing choice for children learning to eliminate intentionally is pants with an opening to allow for them to pause, squat down, and pee and poop without dirtying their clothing.
Sometimes baby boy potty training and potty training baby girls begins even a few weeks after a baby is born! Imagine that! In the villages of Beng, babies are given an enema two times per day once their umbilical cord falls off. This practice clears babies colons out and eliminates pooping during the day.
Why Potty Training a Baby Early is a Necessity in Some Parts of the World
It makes sense that intentional elimination potty training practices are started early in various parts of the world. One theory believes that the closer to the equator a family is, the earlier families begin to potty train.
In the US, parents who are eager to toilet train early follow a practice known as elimination communication. This is similar to what was discussed above, but parents learn the bodily cues of their children right before they are about to pee or poop and place them over the toilet.
The fact that so many people still don’t have access to or the resources for diapers is quite helpful for our planet. In this article it states “Environmentalists calculate that disposable diapers constitute the third-largest single consumer item in landfills, and their production requires some 7 billion gallons of oil each year.”
But how is potty training possible? Do babies understand what they are doing? According to Parenting Science, babies can hold back eliminating. Babies are in tune with their bodily sensations. If potty training is delayed, and those sensations ignored, for too long they have to relearn how to tune into that sensation once again.
I believe that babies are more aware of their need to eliminate, because I tapped into this awareness with my then 8 week old baby.
Potty Training a Baby: My 8-Week-Old Baby Boy
I used Infant Click Communication
Infant Click Communication
At 6 weeks old, Kaiden had begun communicating to my husband and myself when he had a dirty diaper. So I used our common, understood “language” and placed him on the toilet and he peed. He continued to do that for three days before becoming uncomfortable and scared on the large, cold porcelain toilet. So we stopped.
We resumed our potty training efforts at 5 months, once we got an infant toilet and Mama came to terms the big commitment this would entail. He not only pees when we give him the dirty diaper click, but he’ll poop as well. See videos.
He also wouldn’t want to leave the potty until he has emptied himself completely. I believe he learned this from when he’d poop his diaper, but we’d change it before he was done and we would quickly end up with another poopy diaper.
Kaiden’s Potty Training Adventures
He also tells us when he has to go potty by signaling the dirty diaper click! In fact, on day 5 of potty training dad put Kaiden on the potty and Kaiden didn’t signal that he was done (he does a quick whine), but we were running late so dad wrapped him up early and put him in the bathroom with me while I got ready for work. Kaiden clicked that he had to go to the bathroom a few moments after and I put him back on his potty where he pooped less than a minute later.
On day 4 of potty training Kaiden woke up, I nursed him, then when he was done eating, he clicked to go on the potty and he peed and pooped!
Another potty training experience that happened on day 3 of potty training was when I took Kaiden to go potty, and he did, and then I took him to Dad while Dad worked in his office so I could go pee myself. While in there, he clicked to tell Dad he had to go pee. I thought it was strange but I put him back on the potty and sure enough he wasn’t finished and peed.
Is Potty Training a Baby Easy?
Yes and no. It’s time consuming potty training a baby (see the story above about dad not wanting to wait for him to poop). I think that’s also why I delayed it and started again at 5 months. It’s a huge responsibility to be consistent when potty training a baby and I also don’t want him using the grown up toilets as I believe he would easily scare with the automatic flush toilets. So when we leave the house, we bring his toilet along to continue with the consistency.
To answer the question is potty training a baby easy? It’s easier if you speak a common language, and that has been Infant Click Communication. This has allowed Kaiden to tell us when he has to eliminate. Can we now go diaper free? No, he still wets his diapers, but for the most part, he only poops in the potty.
The CounselingMama Approach
I hope that you found this article informative. If you want to incorporate any of the techniques mentioned above, fantastic, if not, my philosophy is “You do you!”. I truly believe that you are the expert of you and your baby.
If you want to learn more about Infant Click Communication, please watch my video to learn more.
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Infinite love and light,
Author: J Kontos
Hi! I’m J; a full-time Mama by choice and a part-time academic, personal, and career counselor by profession (and by choice as well). I received my Master’s in Counseling and a Bachelor’s in Human Services. My infant, Kaiden, has gifted me with being his Mama. I love all things wiener dogs, coffee, and hearts. I’m waiving hi to you from sunny San Diego!
Infinite love and light, – J