So you’ve mastered toilet training and are feeling mighty proud of your little one – but how do you keep those pants free from *ahem* poop and wet marks?
Don’t panic! With a little time and effort, it really doesnt have to be a messy pant stress – here’s how to keep those bottoms fresh and your little ones wipe independent:
1. Lead the way: It really is a simple but effective way of teaching your little one to wipe correctly – so show your little one how to do it by letting them watch you! I’m not suggesting a graphic poop wiping session, just simply show them how much tissue to use, how to wipe (wiping front to back to avoid infections) and how to flush the toilet. Finally show them how to wash their hands properly.
2. How much paper? I think this is a personal thing to be honest – so show your little one how many pieces to use (you can count the squares with them,) then how to fold (or scrunch) and then reaffirm the importance of wiping front to back.
Teach your little one to dispose each wipe attempt down the toilet and to keep wiping until clean. Toilet wipes are ideal for little ones as they clean easier, quickly and help little bottoms stay fresh!
3. Practice makes perfect! It’s not easy as a toddler wiping when you only have little arms, so get your little one to try and try again. If they really don’t want to do it -don’t force the issue, especially if they are not long in pants from nappies. Wait until they are ready.
Always check they have done a good job in those early days of independent wiping, and always praise their efforts – even if they’ve not quite managed the art of wiping!
If they are starting school and need that independence, talk about being a ‘big boy’ or girl, how it’s very grown-up and clever to wipe your own bottom and keep yourself clean. Let’s face it – it’s not a pleasant job and if mummy or daddy will do it then that’s great, but in school they really are expected to be able to do that job for themselves.
4. Talk about keeping clean and germs: By keeping your little one in the know about germs and encouraging good toileting habits, they’re less likely to pick up tummy bugs. Talk about hand washing good hygiene and how important it is to wash hands after using the toilet. Show them how to wash their hands properly, ensure there is child friendly soap that’s easy to reach and that they can reach the sink too (a bathroom step is helpful until they are tall enough to reach.)
5. Make it fun! All kids eventually go through a stage where toilet talk is very funny! Mine included. Poo-canoes, pootastic, it’s all about being ighthearted while getting an important message across. Make toilet training and wiping fun by making up songs or looking at funny poop books! One of our favourites is ‘The mole who knew it was none of his business’ – it really is a fun read and great for talking about poo!
Our favourite toilet song is the Poo song by our delightful friend Dr Ranj. If you’ve not heard it yet – you’re in for a real treat!
If you’ve a little one in wipe-training I know it can be a tricky time. It’s certainly an eventful part of parenting and no doubt there will be mistakes and mishaps so don’t over-worry, your little one will get there eventually.
I’ll leave you with our favourite poop song and wish you lots of luck on your tots wiping journey!