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Practical Tips for Night Time Potty Training

Practical Tips for Night Time Potty Training

As your precious toddler grows, you’ll soon find yourself night time potty training. The questions parents begin asking themselves are, “How do I know when my child is ready?

How do I even do it – successfully?

And, is it truly possible to teach?â€

potty training toddler

If you already have a few potty trained kids under your belt then you already know that each child is different.

Even through the differences, there are a few key tips to keep in mind to make the process smooth for you and your little one.

night time potty training tips

Is Nighttime Potty Training the Same as Daytime?

The short answer? No.

The fact of the matter is there are two separate physical developmental processes happening during the day versus at night.

Your child is constantly learning; however, not so much when they’re sleeping.

But don’t let that deter you from setting your child up for learning how to stay dry throughout the night.

Almost every pediatrician will tell you there is a certain developmental step that has to be taken when a child is physically ready.

Pro Mama Tip: Is Your Child Even READY To Start Potty Training?

Much of this has to do with their capability to control their bladder better during the day.

At nighttime, children are in one of their most relaxed states, which also means their bodily functions are as well.

The biggest physiological milestone is when a child’s bladder actually triggers them to wake up at night to use the bathroom. Leading up to that moment, there are small indicators that can tell you (and them) that they are ready to begin night time potty training.

When Should Night Time Potty Training Start?

For starters, you should always keep the developmental and physical uniqueness of each individual child in mind.

Some children may appear to be ready at two years old, while others may not show some of the signs mentioned below until they are three years old.

Also, as hard as it can be, you may have to push things others have told you to the side. 

It’s common for mothers who had children back in the early 80s say that children are ready at one year old.

Newer moms often argue to wait for the signs of the child. While both scenarios have some truth to them, there are a specific indicators you can be on the lookout for in your child:

  • Your child has started potty training during the day, and stays relatively dry.
  • Your child can follow simple instructions independently.
  • He or she can physically go to the bathroom and get on the toilet (or potty seat).
  • He or she can stay dry for up to two hours at a time.

These are strong indicators that your child can begin potty training at night.

Also be mindful that although you are prepared, your child may not be – so look out for these signs to plan accordingly.

potty training at night time

Practical Tips for Nighttime Potty Training

When you and your child are ready to take the leap of leaving diapers and pull-ups behind, follow these practical tips to help them become officially nighttime potty trained:

  • Create an effective daytime potty training plan. An example could be having bathroom breaks every two hours, followed by check-ins every so often between then. This consistency will carry over through the nighttime.
  • Focus on keeping your child hydrated during the day. This will also help them differentiate between having to go to the bathroom, and not.
  • Limit liquid intake beyond a certain time of day. Most parents say that liquids stop after 6pm for their potty training children.
  • Add a bathroom break to your nighttime routine. This will help your child identify going to the bathroom as part of something to naturally do.
  • Be prepared for accidents. They are about bound to happen!
  • Invest in some nighttime potty training supplies. See my list of must-haves below. 
  • Celebrate a milestone reached. Set up a reward system for your child once they reach a certain milestone (i.e., 3 nights without having any accidents). Some parents incorporate potty charts to help their child keep track of their potty training successes.

Parents often wonder if waking their child up during the night should be part of the nighttime potty training routine, and honestly – it depends on the parent.

Some parents have found success in waking their child up at least once in the night to use the bathroom, whereas other parents found it to be an inconvenience.

Choose what’s right for you and try it out. If it doesn’t work, don’t hesitate to change it up!

Must-Have Night Time Potty Training Supplies

Having a good stash of supplies and resources on hand can help make your journey a lot smoother.

However, don’t worry about investing in more than what you feel is necessary.

Parents who are new to potty training a child typically pull out all stops, while seasoned parents say they usually settle for just a few items mentioned below. 

Overall, try not to stress about potty training your child at night. This is a milestone that all children reach at some point in time regardless if they are two, three, or even four years old.

Remember that every child is different so try to not force them to fit the mold of your older children, or your best friend’s potty trained child.

Seasoned parents all agree that waiting until your child shows signs they are ready makes for a smoother transition.

When your child is ready, they will let you know. In the meantime, be on the lookout for those cues. Then, take the suggestions mentioned here and go for it!

  • A potty chair that sits on the floor, or a seat that hooks to or can be installed on the toilet.
  • Pull ups designed for night time potty training.
  • A waterproof pad or sheet to help protect your mattress.
  • A stool (if your child cannot get on the potty by themselves).
  • “Big girl†or “big boy†underwear.
  • Potty books

Overall, try not to stress about potty training your child at night.

Remember that every child is different so try to not force them to fit the mold of your older children, or your best friend’s potty trained child.

When your child is ready, they will let you know, and in the meantime, be on the lookout for those cues.

Then, take the suggestions mentioned here and go for it!

Feel free to share your potty training tips in the comments below.