Hygiene in potty training consists of much more than just washing hands. The business of “doing your business” can be a messy proposition – especially with toddlers.
How To Ensure Good Hygiene In Potty Training
First, when it comes to the potty chair and the removable bowl, you may want to show your child the correct way to clean it out and have them do it themselves.
Change your child’s underwear or training pants as soon as possible after soiling so s/he doesn’t become comfortable with or even enjoy, being soiled.
Soiled underwear falls into one of two categories: save or trash. When it is just urine, a run in the washing machine will make it smell like new. When it is a bowel movement, it depends. Most likely, if the BM is wet or mushy, pitch the underwear in the trash. But there may be occasions when few or no traces of BM are apparent and the underwear can be saved.
Encourage your child to wipe the seat when he or she is done. Since germs can be sprayed from the toilet flushing process and settle on the seat, teach children to wipe the toilet seat with toilet paper. Germs can be present whether the seat is wet or dry.
Teach your child how to wipe properly. Girls should wipe thoroughly from front to back to prevent bringing germs from the rectum to the vagina or bladder. Teach your little girl to go “pat, pat, pat” instead of wiping hard. This will help eliminate irritation or possible rashes.
Buy products that are gentle on children’s extra sensitive skin but also are strong and absorbent. For example, pre-moistened wipes are ideal for young users because they gently and effectively clean children’s delicate skin while providing the strength and absorbency to accomplish the task.
There are now tons and tons of these products on the market, so finding one shouldn’t be too difficult!
Some say that reciting the ABC song fully while washing your hands will get them clean enough. You can also teach your child to count to ten or say a rhyme while washing hands to help them gauge the right amount of time.
They should dry their hands on a towel (which should be laundered at least on a weekly basis). Hand washing should be routinely done, even if your child didn’t actually “go” in the potty. And don’t forget to wash YOUR hands, too.
Children need repeated reminders to close the toilet lid before flushing to avoid contact with germs that might spray up.
For easy potty chair clean up, place cling-wrap or a coffee-filter in the bowl before your child sits down. When they’re done, there’s minimal mess – just lift the wrap or filter out and throw it in the trash. Don’t flush the wrap and filter because it’s not biodegradable like toilet paper.
Clean the potty periodically with a bleach/water solution after each training session. To avoid cleaning carpets, place the potty on an easily cleaned floor or invest in a mat that can be cleaned to avoid any spillage on the carpets. One mom puts down painter’s plastic which is cheap to buy and easy to discard.
While potty training, it’s a great time to teach your child (especially if a boy) to lower both the seat and the lid when they are finished as a necessary part of the ritual. Their future wives will you!
Washing hands can be difficult for your little one. They probably won’t be able to reach the bathroom sink, so that’s where the stool I talked about before can come in handy!