Nighttime continence is one of the mountains to climb on the way to complete toilet training. I wrote two books on special needs potty training,( The Practical Guide to Toilet Training the Autistic Child: From Diapering Differently to Using Public Facilities and The Practical Guide to Toilet Training Your Child With Low Muscle Tone:…… Continue reading Can Your Special Needs Child Stay Dry through the Night?
Hardly anyone finds public toilets a pleasant place when nature calls. But some kids (and adults!) react very poorly to the sounds of the public toilet. It might take some experience or some discussion to figure out that the sounds of the public toilet, specifically hand dryers and flushing, are what make them the most…… Continue reading Does Your Child Hate Hearing Hand Dryers and Flushing Toilets?
Later this month I will be speaking to a combined parent and staff group on special needs toilet training. This is a terrific opportunity to build bridges and help both groups learn more about my targeted sensory-motor approach. I am truly honored. Among the topics I have been asked to address is this one: how…… Continue reading How to Communicate with Your Child’s School During Toilet Training
ADHD and Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) can increase a child’s bedwetting at any age. When you think about it, this make a lot of sense. So…let’s think about it. ADHD: Kids with ADHD often struggle to settle down for the night. They still have to get up for school at the same time in the…… Continue reading Two Causes of Bedwetting Your Pediatrician Might NOT be Mentioning
There is a simple answer: you train when you train, and not a minute before that. But you can train too late, and there are hidden consequences that should no longer remain hidden. In the current tide of emotions on social media, there is plenty of mom-shaming and blaming going around. Just stop all of…… Continue reading Are You Potty Training TOO LATE?
That was a trick question: of course it can. The wrong adaptive equipment can create hazards as well as bad habits that are hard to break. And it happens all the time now, as parents and patients decide that they know exactly what is needed. It also happens when they aren’t provided with access to…… Continue reading Can Adaptive Equipment Be Dangerous to a Child?
What does it take to get a child with autism to completely independently, and calmly, use the toilet in a public place? Solid skills at home, comfort with being in an unfamiliar bathroom, and no option of using a Pull-Up. Get your child so good at using the bathroom at home that they could…… Continue reading Can Your Autistic Child use the Potty in a Public Place Yet?
No parent wants to think about this subject. Not one. But it is essential to realize that abuse happens. The statistics are concerning. The majority of abuse continues to happen in the same locations as for neurotypical kids: the child’s home, relative’s homes, and the homes of family friends. But because autistic children also…… Continue reading Reduce Your Autistic Child’s Chances of Being Sexually Abused by Toilet Training Them
After writing The Practical Guide to Toilet Training the Autistic Child I got a lot of feedback on how great the book was. And how long. It seems that some professionals and a lot of parents are so crushed for time that they wanted a “Cliff Notes” version (showing my age, I guess…!) So I decided…… Continue reading Make Life Easier: The Special Needs Toileting Handout Pack is Finally Here!
I have been asked this question twice by friends in the month since my new book, The Practical Guide to Toilet Training the Autistic Child: Sensory-Motor Secrets to Success, came out. My answer hasn’t changed, but my awareness of how other people view readiness has. The short answer: You can train successfully much earlier than…… Continue reading How Early is TOO EARLY to Potty Train?
Toilet Training a child with autism is not easy. It just got easier. The Practical Guide to Toilet Training the Autistic Child: Sensory-Motor Secrets for Success is finally done! I wanted to share everything I have learned as a pediatric occupational therapist for over 25 years. And everything I have learned from families…… Continue reading The Practical Guide to Toilet Training the Autistic Child: From Diapering Differently to Using Public Facilities
It isn’t that parents and professionals think potty training an autistic child will be easy. They know it could be a challenge and it could take longer than training a neurotypical child. They simply don’t expect it to be so consistently tough and to have so many unexpected twists and turns. Some of them can…… Continue reading Why Does Autism Create so Many Toilet Training Struggles for Kids (and Their Exhausted Parents)?
Whether or not you are training a special needs child or a neurotypical child, you will have to think about exactly which methods you will be using. The two general categories for training strategies are the “boot camp”, in which the child spends days living near the potty, focusing on toileting, and the gradual…… Continue reading How To Decide Between “Boot Camp” and Gradual Potty Training
I finished writing “The Practical Guide To Toilet Training The Autistic Child: Sensory-Motor Secrets For Success”. It was a labor of love, and a lot of work. I got to the chapter on safety and balance, and decided that I couldn’t wait until it is published to put out another post on why “dry…… Continue reading Use Dry Runs With Autistic Kids During Potty Training (Wait; What’s a Dry Run?)
Before I wrote my first book, “The Practical Guide To Toilet Training Your Child With Low Muscle Tone”, I took out every book on potty training my regional library system would share with me. While I did determine that the best book for neurotypical kids was “Oh Crap Potty Training”, I didn’t see a lot mentioned…… Continue reading How to Pick The Best Toilet Paper For Potty Training
“Daddy….I gotta go. Right NOWWWW!” No parent wants to hear this coming from the back seat of their car while driving down a freeway or on a rural road. But it happens. And it can happen to older kids with hypermobile Ehlers Danlos syndrome (hEDS), well past early childhood. It can happen to…… Continue reading Why Your Kid With hEDS Doesn’t Seem to Know They Need the Potty… Right Now!
Toilet training for kids with ASD is complex, and it can take a while. But while you are working on developing communication skills and increasing sensory tolerance, don’t forget to work on clothing management. WHY? Autistic children tend to have difficulty quickly and accurately sensing urgency. Unless you are glued to their side, and…… Continue reading Why Teaching Dressing Skills is Essential to Potty Train Autistic Kids
In many ways, kids with ASD are much the same as all children. They laugh, they play, and they need to learn basic self-care skills. They push your limits, and they warm your heart. Toilet training isn’t one of those warm-your-heart events. Potty training, all the way to full independence (where you don’t tell them…… Continue reading What’s So Different About Potty Training An Autistic Child?
I get a few calls every year from parents who have a neurotypical child between 4 and 5 that has said, very clearly, in words, that they refuse to use the toilet. Often, it is pooping in the potty, not peeing. Hesitancy is one thing. Adamant refusal in words, clear words, is another thing. The…… Continue reading Try This Simple Strategy When Your Child Refuses To Use The Toilet
Author’s note: These strategies will be most successful for children with a cognitive age of at least 36 months, and receptive language skills of at least 30 months. Children with severe quadriplegic CP most likely will always need physical assistance for toileting, even if they can direct their caregiver’s actions. That will be another blog…… Continue reading Potty Training Your Child With CP