Learning independence with toileting is a milestone in any child’s life. Parents are always eager for their children to be able to take themselves to the toilet and have no accidents during the day or at night. Being able to toilet independently has many benefits for both child, parent and family life.
Learning to toilet involves the development of physical control over bladder and bowel function. It also requires the development of motor skills, language and social understanding. Toileting routines include learning to follow body signals; sit / stand; aim; pull clothing up/down; wipe; wash hands and tidy up as necessary. Hygiene management skills are extended further as adolescence occurs.
Toilet training is rarely a smooth process for any child and requires patience and persistence. For some children with developmental delay it can be expected that toilet training may be a longer and slower process. For children with specialised physical or developmental needs, adaptations to the toilet, toileting environment and toileting process may be required. Occupational Therapists are trained to assess the child and environment for specialised modifications and equipment.
Bedwetting is often a primary concern for parents of older children due to limitations it can place on children’s socialisation and attendance at school camps. Night time bladder control usually develops after day time dryness is achieved. The development of night time continence is related to the child’s bladder capacity and maturation of their sleep cycle. Bedwetting is common after the age of 5 years and often has a family history and hormonal influence on its development. Bedwetting is more common in boys than girls.
Our skilled team can provide information and strategies to assist you and your child to identify when they are ready to be toilet trained; manage the toileting process and develop supports to promote toileting routines. If you have any medical concerns related to the toileting process, child constipation or how your child uses their bladder or bowels please seek attention from your GP, CAFHS nurse or Continence Advisor.