Everyday Mums Talk About Toilet Training: Managing Regressions

Childhood 101 | Toilet Training (Potty Training) Tips- Part 4 Managing Regressions

In part four of our toilet training series, today our Mums are talking about regressions…

How did you manage regressions?

  • My firstborn went back to night wetting after her second sister was born (she was 4). We just put extra sheets on the bed and took her to the toilet in her sleep until it passed. My middle child goes through phases of being easily distracted by fun things and wanting to hold on as long as possible – often until she wets her pants. I try for reminders and not to get too annoyed. SH
  • It was usually associated with my husband being away or something. Lots of cuddles in between and not making a big deal of their accidents. SP
  • J regressed with No. 2’s after she had an accident at day care that was quite an ordeal (first meal of mexican beef….say no more).  It was three weeks of every emotion until we got back on track.  I was very patient at first but regression is hard to handle after they have mastered the art of going to the potty.  Patience was replaced by frustration and at times anger.  I consulted all of the baby books I had and they all said the same thing, hang in there – so we did.  Smiles through clenched teeth and small rewards slowly paid off.  My mantra became a comment made by one of the authors in my baby books,  “No-one walks down the aisle wearing a nappy”. TW
  • We’ve never really had issues with regression. M goes through patches where he’s less attentive to the whole toilet thing than others, but usually that is because he’s tired, or unwell, or focusing his attention on somthing else, and he always comes good without any issues. KF
  • We would go back a step and repeat what we did before. AH
  • Treat them as no big deal. CO

Do you have any advice to share for managing toilet training regressions?

Great big thanks for sharing so generously go to Shae (Mum to 3 girls), Tanya (Mum to a pigeon pair), Amanda (Mum to 2 girls), Kate (Mum to 4 – two of each), Cath (Mum to 1+1) and Sarah (Mum to 2 boys and 1 girl).

Read the rest of the Everyday Mums Talk Toilet Training series;

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  1. My son regressed at four when his second sister was born. When I was feeding or something like that , he would poo or wee in the corner. I was so tired and thought I would go mad. After losing it a few times I realized that the only way to deal with it was to ignore it. Although I was screaming on the inside I would stay calm, blank face, clean it up and move on. It was hard but it stopped quickly then. Now night times……. That’s another story.

  2. My daughter regressed with #2 while we were travelling recently. Turned out that change in diet plus less exercise led to major constipation. So please check for the physical causes before assuming it’s a something the child has control over.

    Fruits and vegetables did the trick, but we wish we had taken that approach first instead of gently reminding her to use the facilities instead of her panties. Led to a lot of frustration for both of us.

    UTIs can apparently cause regression too, both giving the child less time to make it to the toilet and causing pain which makes them want to avoid peeing.

  3. I had a really hard time with potty training and getting my daughter to stay dry. After several months of things getting worse and worse with peeing, I finally figured it out…food allergies! No one talks about this; your doctor will know nothing of it. But if you find that the accidents are not making sense and you can’t figure it out, I urge you to look into the food your child is eating. My daughter was peeing 12-14 times per day (an impossibility to stay dry for a 2-1/2 year old!). With the elimination of gluten, dairy and coconut she now pees a normal 5-6 times per day and stays dry!

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