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Potty Training While On-the-Go
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Laura Jana, MD posted:
One of the cardinal rules of potty training (and parenting in general) is to be consistent. When potty training, this can simply mean making sure that your child has easy access to a potty, and is encouraged to use it regularly throughout the day. This is sometimes easier said than done -- and that's before you consider taking your child on the road.

Based on my own personal and professional experiences, the logistics of potty training should factor into any family travel plans. Leaving the comforts of home almost always involves your child departing from regularly scheduled visits to a familiar potty. I suggest you do some advanced planning to head off any reluctance on your child's part to use an unfamiliar potty.

Whether your travels tend to take you short distances around town, or longer treks over the river and through the woods, I suggest getting your child into the habit of going potty before you step out of the house. Treat this task as something that is expected -- like buckling up in a car seat or brushing teeth. Go about the process matter-of-factly. Instead of asking, "Do you have to go?" -- a question that you're bound to hear more "no's" than you'd like, simply make a pre-trip potty visit a routine event.

Once you're in the car, make sure that you're well prepared. By "well prepared," I mean that you do the following:

? Be prepared to stop the car with little or no notice of the impending need for your child to pee or poop.

? Limit the amount of fluids your child drinks just before, as well as during, your road trip.

? Bring along a change of clothes for any accidents.

? Come equipped with any necessary potty training accessories.

Regarding accessories, a stash of baby wipes and plastic bags for disposing used wipes is very useful. This is a habit I continued long after my children were potty trained. For my children, a portable potty seat was the best accessory for maintaining their potty successes when we were out and about.

You might be thinking to yourself that telling you to bring along a potty seat is stating the obvious. But many parents have never thought of putting a potty seat in the car. The practicality of packing a potty seat extends well past the immediate potty training period. After all, when a preschooler or a kindergartner has gotta go, they gotta go -- regardless of how close to a bathroom you happen to be at the time.

These are the best on-the-road potty training tips I have for you. What are other potty training travel tips and techniques you've tried? How well have they worked for you? Summer travel season is nearly upon us, so share here!
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