How to Potty Train Using the Naked Method

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While potty training is probably not something you are excited to do, it's necessary. The naked approach to potty training is not for everyone. It requires a great deal of patience from the caregiver, and the willingness to clean up many messes. It works best if you have several days to dedicate to the process, when your stress level is otherwise low. The philosophy of the naked approach is pretty simple. The child learns the demands of his body without clothes buffering him from the effects of his bodily functions.

Things You'll Need

  • Potty chair or small seat for toilet
  • Floor cleaning supplies

How to Use the Naked Method for Potty Training

  • Strip the child from the waist down. Explain to her that when she needs to go potty she needs to sit on the potty chair or toilet. Practice sitting on the toilet and reassure her that she will not fall in.

  • Ask the child frequently if he needs to go potty. Asking too often will annoy him, but not asking often enough will result in accidents. If he has been playing at the same thing for some time, or seems to be absorbed in an activity, interrupt it and remind him to go potty if he needs to. If he has an accident, reassure him that he's not in trouble, and remind him that he needs to do that on the potty. After a few accidents the child should begin to recognize immediately when he has gone potty, and, ideally, will tell you when it has happened. After some time, he will recognize the feeling that comes before the accident and, while he may still not get to the potty on time, recognizing just before it happens, or while it's happening, is progress.

  • Reward any success. A reward can be as simple as a high five and enthusiastic praise, or small trinkets or stickers. Just remember that at some point you will need to stop rewarding for success, so make sure the reward isn't something a child will be upset to be without.

  • Decide whether to put a diaper on the child during naps. If he has been waking up dry from naps, you may want to go without. Either way, take him to the potty before nap time and immediately after he wakes up. Keep a diaper on at bedtime for some time, unless he has been waking up dry.

  • Add a layer at a time once the child is consistently pottying on the potty. Add sweat pants or loose shorts first to keep her from feeling too much like she has the diaper again.

  • Add underwear after a few days of success with pants on. Make a big deal out of shopping for the child's first underwear and let him pick out the design. Some kids are less likely to go potty on their favorite cartoon character.

Tips & Warnings

  • Talk to your child about potty training before you plan to start actively potty training. Take opportunities like changing diapers, parents going potty or even pets going potty to talk about what is going on in his body and how to manage it. Start dumping poopy diapers in the toilet so he understands that is the appropriate place for it.
  • This method is not for everyone, parents or children. If you find yourself getting upset and discouraged, either try another method or take a break from potty training for a while. If the child is not making some progress in three to four days, at least recognizing that she has gone potty, she may not be ready for potty training. Children develop at different rates and you being tired of changing diapers doesn't mean the child is ready for potty training.

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