How Long Does Potty Training Take?

Navigating the Timeline and Techniques for Successful Potty Training

by Coterie Team

Potty training is different for every child, and while some are ready very quickly and relish the challenge of gaining independence and freedom in the bathroom, others need a little longer to build confidence and dexterity.

The good news is that, when timed well, with heaps of positive reinforcement and encouragement to make potty training fun and easy, potty training can be successful surprisingly fast.

On average, a child takes around six months from first trying out a potty training pant to being able to use the bathroom on their own, but this isn't a hard and fast rule, and it is fine if your child takes a step back along the way–this is all part of natural progression and development.

By What Age Should My Child Be Potty Trained?

As parents, we often focus on milestones and perceive that there is an age by which all children should be potty trained, remain dry during the night, or be happy to wear pants throughout the day. The reality is that every little one grows and learns differently, so averages are an indication rather than a deadline.

To achieve a smooth transition to using the potty, you can look for cues that your child is ready and able to switch to potty-training pants. Some children start potty training well but experience a setback, so you can reset and try again when you feel the time is right.

One of the best signs is physical movement and activity, which may mean your child will benefit from comfortable training pants with that all-important absorbency to prevent leaks. When a child is completely ready, they might pick up potty training in just a few days, whereas others may need more encouragement or time to build the confidence to use the bathroom independently.

How Can I Improve My Chances of Successful Potty Training?

As babies become more curious about the world and find their feet, you need potty-training pants that can keep up while allowing your child to try pulling their pants up and down to learn this movement. The first step is to ensure their potty-training pants are comfortable, suitable for even the most sensitive skin, and provide sufficient absorbency to keep your little ones’ skin dry, clean, and free of irritation.

Coterie’s The Pant is engineered for this exact purpose, blending the convenience and protection of a diaper but with up to 2.5 times more stretch* for active toddlers and up to 80% higher liquid capacity* to help keep leaks at bay. Our next advice would be to focus on patience and never to feel pressure to rush potty training; it may be useful to advise your daycare or nanny of your potty-training plan to ensure your approach is consistent and all caregivers are on board.

*tested for performance against leading training pants

Children with older siblings will often potty train more quickly because they develop skills based on copying and replicating the behaviors they see around them, but an established routine may also be helpful. Potty training can be a big next step. You can work together without any stress or upsets by putting in place a gradual plan customized to your child’s age, development, and ability to communicate their need to use the bathroom.

The Importance of Positive Reinforcement in Potty Training

We mentioned positivity, which can significantly impact your child's experiences. Rather than acknowledging extremely common accidents, concentrating on their successes is a great idea. You could try:

  • Helping your child verbalize when they need the bathroom, offering praise and encouragement every time they let you know (even if there isn't enough time to get there!)
  • Using small rewards such as stickers that align with your parenting style and approach, or taking a moment from your day for a hug or a special treat to celebrate each win

Choosing potty-training pants that can still function as a diaper gives children reassurance and familiarity as they get used to pulling their pants up and down. While using the bathroom is a normal function for older children, this is a major progression for little ones, so breaking down potty training into smaller steps and using positive encouragement can pave the way for a smooth transition where your child feels supported at each step.