In the article – Potty Training Your Toddler – Knowing How and When You Should Start, I outlined the main signs to look for, which show you when you toddler is ready for potty training. I also highlighted some of the best potty training products that I found useful when potty training our own daughter.
This article will concentrate on the potty itself. There are hundreds, if not thousands of potties available in all manner of shapes and sizes. Some are basic and conventional, while nowadays many are more than one product rolled into one. To see a collection of potties that are available to buy online, click the images below.
The first thing you will obviously need is a potty. However, consider the layout of your home and how many storeys you have. Rather than running back and forth trying to find the only potty you have, just buy two. If you go for a basic type of potty it will not be very expensive at all to buy more than two. Anything you can do to make this process easier for anybody concerned will be worth it.
Over The Top?
There are so many types of potties available in many different designs. Each type of design offers useful features or levels of comfort and convenience. My view is that potty training should only last for a week or two, maybe a little longer, so why spend a lot of money on a potty that does more than you need?
Here are some examples of what I would describe as unnecessary and over fussy potties. Although I am not a fan I have to point out that they are fun and they are personal to a child, as it is solely for their use. They look comfortable to sit on and some offer multiple functions, for example they can be folded down to become a step for a toddler to stand on afterwards when washing their hands.
Although this type of potty will be fun for a child they are clearly less popular; there are only a few reviews from Amazon customers who bought them (at most maybe 30 or 40). More conventional potties are way more popular and enjoy hundreds of top reviews from parents. Click the following images to see full details.
Could a toddler form too much of an attachment to a potty of this type? The idea of potty training is to negate the need for nappies. This will involve them using a regular toilet at some point; potty training is just that – using a potty to train a toddler how to pee or poop when they need to. A potty is not something they should have trough early childhood.
It could be a backward step if your toddler refuses to use the toilet and instead insists on using their Disney Princess potty, for instance. Potty training is quite a big step for a toddler and anything that could hold them back should be avoided.
If you follow the popular advice to get more than one potty, should you get two large, multi-functional potties that double up as a step, with a toilet roll attachment? Have you got the space in your home for a collection of these? If you buy more than one potty you could get a fancy one and a regular one. The problem may occur when your toddler refuses to use the regular one, which is to hand, in favour for the fancy one that is elsewhere. It’s a mishap waiting to happen if you cannot get to the other potty in time.
A more appropriate potty to go for, which is slightly larger than a regular potty, could be the Baby Bjorn potty chair. It is designed more as a potty seat than a potty. When a child sits on a potty their knees are usually higher than their hips and it can be more difficult for them to get up and off the potty afterwards. With a higher seating position and a back rest your toddler will no doubt be more comfortable.
This potty has a back rest and arm rests for a more comfortable seating position, as well as a non-skid base to prevent movement. A removable inner potty is easily removed for cleaning and it incorporates a built in splash guard to prevent added mess.
So, we have looked at slightly more expensive, fun, multi-functional potties, which could actually be unnecessary, too fussy and harder for a toddler to move on from. We have also looked at a more ‘useable’ and functional potty that provide comfort instead of added features that may detract from the point of their use.
How about just a simple, basic potty? What’s wrong with spending less money on a smaller, one-piece potty that performs just as well in its intended use? In my opinion it is better to have two of this type of potty than an over-sized all-singing and all-dancing contraption.
A Simpler Approach
This is the Baby Bjorn ‘Little Potty’. Made from durable and easy to clean plastic, this potty is a more basic design but what do you really need from a potty? It’s as simple as it gets and Baby Bjorn are a major brand when it comes to baby and toddler products, often leading the way with their innovative ideas.
Moulded from one piece, the Little Potty provides optimal comfort and has a built in splash guard that prevent unnecessary messes and splashes. There is a carry handle to the rear, which makes it easy to lift and empty after the glorious event. It also comes in a range of bright colours.
Here is what we used in our home. For downstairs and short trips out we used a simple, pink plastic potty with a princess on it. Did we need any more than that? No. She pees in it and she poops in it (most of the time!), it gets cleaned regularly, it’s light to lift, easy to throw in the car or carry from room to room.
Upstairs we used the regular toilet with a toddler seat attached. If we were upstairs she used that or the potty if it was nearby after being flushed. If she was downstairs she used the potty. She really isn’t that bothered whether it has a toilet roll holder on the side (she uses wipes in any case, as they’re better that dry paper) and she doesn’t spend any longer than necessary using the potty.
Most toddlers aren’t that different to each other size-wise, so a regular potty will be just as easy to sit on for one toddler as it would be for the next. I do concede though, that a small potty like this one does sometimes appear a little awkward to sit on at such a low level. There again, like I said, potty training is for a week or two – not for their whole childhood.