QuestionsCategory: ParentingPotty Training
Ayesha asked 5 years ago

I have an 18 month old, when should I start potty training?

1 Answers
Riverside Cares Staff answered 5 years ago

Hi Ayesha,
There are lots of difference of opinions on this however research shows that bladder capacity increases significantly between the ages of two and three.
Every child is different but before you start potty training you need to make sure

  • they are physically ready and they want to be dry and clean.
  • Your child can manage to stay dry for at least 1½ – 2 hours between wet nappies.
  • they have regular or predictable bowel movements.
  • you know  that a bowel or bladder movement is occurring.
  • Your child is able to understand simple requests such as ‘where’s your potty?’ or ‘do you need a wee?’
  • Your child has the coordination and ability to sit on and get up from the potty and can manage to pull pants up or down with only a little help.
  • Your child shows a desire to please and cooperate.
  • Your child shows an interest in others using the toilet and imitates. Children learn best by observing and copying and potty training is no different.

Every child is different, so it’s best not to compare your child with others, common norms are
At age of two, some children will be dry during the day, but this is still quite early
At the age of three, 9 out of 10 children are dry most days – even then, all children have the odd accident, especially when they’re excited, upset or absorbed in something else
At the age of four, most children are reliably dry in the day.
Hope this helps! If you’d like to learn more we create small group sessions just drop us a line if you are interested 

Jill Wheatcroft is a Lecturer in Child Health and is co-founder and Director of Training at Riverside Cares. She can be contacted at