Potty Training Accidents: Your Questions Answered


Potty training is a significant milestone in the development of a child, but it can be difficult for both the parents and the children. Every child is different, and even siblings may reach the potty training stage at different times.

Some earlier, some later, some much later. Typically speaking, children normally begin potty training around the age of 2 years old.

Some children take on potty training very quickly, whereas others may take a little longer to get it.  There are many helpful tips that may help to make the whole process a lot smoother for both the parent and the child.

Of course, it can be a very frustrating ordeal, but in this article, we will share some advice and knowledge, in addition to answering some of the most common questions regarding potty training. 

We have put together a bunch of the most pressing questions that parents have about potty training, and we’ve provided answers, tips, and advice to help you and your child on this journey towards being potty trained.

Potty Training Accidents Your Questions Answered

However, if you have any specific concerns regarding potty training, it is recommended that you first consult your child’s pediatrician. 

At What Age Do Most Children Learn How To Use The Toilet?

Keep in mind that all children are different, and they develop at different rates.  However, generally speaking, children tend to start potty training around the age of 2.

You should expect to see your child more or less having control over their bowel movements and urination during the day between the ages of 2 and 3.

Beyond 3 years old, they should start having control during the night, apart from the odd accident here and there.  

How Do I Know When My Child Is Ready For Potty Training?

Some of the tell-tale signs that your child is ready for potty training include;

  • Grunting or grimacing during bowel movements,
  • Consistently having regular bowel movements at particular times,
  • Staying dry for multiple hours during the day,
  • Remaining dry during nap time,
  • Complaining when soiled or wet,
  • Having awareness of their bodily functions,
  • Telling you or another caregiver when they have had a bowel movement,
  • Imitating “grown-up” actions,
  • Having the ability to dress or undress themselves,
  • Having the ability to understand and follow instructions

What’s The Best Way To Prepare For Potty Training?

To prepare your child for potty training, you should acknowledge when your child is having or has had a bowel movement consistently during the day. It’s important for them to learn that feces and urine come from the body, and it’s a part of life.

To get them ready for potty training, you should use the words you want them to use for their bodily functions. You can also allow them to observe other people using the toilet, so they understand how it works.

It’s also a good idea to read children’s books to them about potty training.  All of these things will prepare them mentally for using the potty. Our tried and tested list of best potty training books for boys and best potty training books for girls is worth the read.

How Should I Deal With Accidents?

You should expect accidents to happen because they certainly will.  You should therefore be relaxed and easygoing about them. Don’t express any frustration or anger towards them for having accidents.

Remain calm and do not punish, shame, or scold your child when they wet themselves. Instead, simply say “Oh! Your pants are all wet. Shall we get some nice dry ones?” in a calm and reassuring manner.

Then, clean them up calmly and reassure them that they can use their potty next time. Remember, they’re new to this whole toilet thing.  It’s not their fault! 

What Should Be Done If My Child Suddenly Starts Having Many Accidents?

What Should Be Done If My Child Suddenly Starts Having Many Accidents

If your child regresses or starts soiling or wetting themselves regularly, remember this is common, and more often than not it is some kind of reaction to stress.

For toddlers, the pressure and anxiety of going to nursery school for the first time, being separated from their parents for the first time, moving house or some other comparable change can manifest itself in soiling or wetting themselves.

It’s natural, common, and should be expected. Remember, they can’t help it, and therefore it’s not their fault. Stay calm with them and reassure them to ease the tension they feel.  If the problem persists, you should consult your child’s pediatrician. 

If your toddler is experiencing regression, our article on how to deal with potty training regression will give you some ideas on how to help them overcome this stressful time.

What Words Should I Use For Potty Training?

It’s worth putting some thought into the words that you use surrounding potty training. You should teach them words for their body parts and for the process of urinating or having bowel movements.

You should think carefully about the words you choose because you will hear them every day through their preschool years. Not only that but other friends and relatives, neighbors, and teachers will hear these words too! 

How Should I Deal With My Child’s Bed Wetting?

Bed wetting is very common for young children. Usually, children of this young age are very deep sleepers, and they only have very small bladders, so bed wetting shouldn’t come as a surprise. Here are some tips to help manage your child’s bed wetting:

  • Limit how much your child drinks 2 hours before their bedtime 
  • Make sure your child uses the toilet before they go to bed and right after they wake up 
  • Use a rubber or plastic pad to cover your child’s mattress 
  • Praise your child when they have a dry night 
  • Respond gently if your child wets the bed, getting angry won’t help anyone. 


Potty training isn’t only challenging for the parent, but for the children as well.  Remember, be gentle when responding to your child having accidents or wetting the bed.

With enough reassurance, gentle reminders, and persistence, your child will eventually be potty trained.  We hope that these tips are helpful to you and your child when learning how to use the potty.

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