As moms, we always want the best for our children and exploring new and creative ways to meet their needs is our top priority.
You may have heard some of the common misconceptions about potty training an infant early in life. There were theories that say potty training this early could cause personality and behavioral problems. Some doubt the readiness of the infant at this stage due to his lack of complete muscle control. These, however, are simply beliefs that do not have solid scientific evidence. In fact, potty training your baby in his/her early infancy is proven to be greatly rewarding to both the parent and the child.
Long before disposable baby diapers were invented, mothers in India, China, East Africa and some other parts of the world have practiced a gentle method of attuning themselves to the bodily functions of their child that allowed them to know when exactly their baby needs to go. This is called Elimination Communication (EC). To these communities, EC is not simply a potty training method but a part of their tradition and culture.
The basic steps in elimination communication starts with the mom observing the baby’s body signals, warning signs, or indicators, just before the baby pees or poops. These signals may include shuddering, being extremely silent or quiet, squirming, making faces, releasing of gas, etc. When you have recognized the signs, hold your baby over a container where he can pee or poop then make a sound or gesture that he can associate with elimination such as the “sssss” sound. Doing this continuously can help your baby achieve daytime dryness early in life.
Sounds easy? Not quite. This potty training method takes time and patience but its benefits definitely outweigh the cost of this endeavor.
The rewards of potty training your child early include the medical and personal benefits listed below:
(a)Prevent diaper rash. By minimizing the use of disposable baby diapers or totally eliminating it, you protect your baby from the harmful substances used in these diapers and prevent the occurrence of rashes and other types of baby skin irritation.
(b)Prevent diaper-related infections. A baby walking around with a wet or soiled diaper is exposed to urinary tract infections, yeast infections, eczema, etc.
(c)Avoid enuresis or bed-wetting. Enuresis is the medical name for bed-wetting during sleep. This is common among young boys and girls but could be prolonged beyond seven (7) years of age in some cases. Infant potty training can help avoid this condition.
(d)Savings. Statistics show that urban families in the United States potty train their children later and later in life. Toddlers of three (3) or even four (4) years old are still wearing diapers. This amounts to thousands of diapers and thousands of dollars. If you are using cloth or reusable diapers, you can also save a lot from laundry costs.
(e)Parent-child bonding. Elimination Communication is a great way of starting a positive communication between you and your child. It is found to have a positive effect in the parent-child relationship as the child grows older.
(f)Troublesome Twos. Many parents start to potty train their children between one (1) and two (2) years of age. As a result, they get frustrated and stressed since this is a time when the child could sorely test your patience. They are hyperactive and thoroughly troublesome. By starting to potty train your baby early, the process can be completed in 12 months or so, depending on whether you are doing it full-time or part-time. You can, therefore, avoid difficult potty training sessions.
(g)Environmentally Sound. It takes 500 years for a disposable diaper to decompose. In the US alone, approximately 11,000 babies are born everyday. Each baby uses approximately 60 diapers per week. Oh my, this is definitely something to think about and act upon.
Freelance Contributor: Hazel Zanoria