Training your kid to use the toilet can be hard. It takes persistence and time. That being said, it’s a crucial aspect of helping them learn about their body and develop necessary cognitive skills.
How to Toilet Train Your Autistic Child
However, for a kid with autism, toilet training can be a real challenge. This is because they may respond differently to toilet training than most kids. Moreover, it can be even more complicated if there are communication issues or if the kid usually requires more time to learn a new skill.
This is where we step in to help. We have mentioned useful tips to help toilet train your kid. Take a look.
Work With the Child’s Diapers and Underwear
When toilet training your kid, consider habituating them with wearing underwear instead of diapers. For autistic kids, this is even more critical because the transition from diapers to underwear may give rise to different feelings. Moreover, it may take them some time to feel comfortable in underwear.
Initially, you should expect your kid to poop or urinate in their underwear, which is okay. It will take them some time to remember that they are no longer wearing diapers.
Once the kid becomes comfortable, start the training. Tell the kid to pick interesting and fun underwear, maybe with their favorite cartoon characters or colors. It’s also a good idea to start with daytime toilet training and then move onto the nighttime, as your kid starts showing improvement.
Spend (or Make) Time
Toilet training typically takes an entire week if the parent and child practice every day. Doing it every day is also essential to monitor your child’s progress.
If you feel the kid needs to pee or you see the first signs of wet underwear, rush your kid to the bathroom to ensure they understand that’s where they need to go.
You’re helping your kid learn what they should do when nature calls. Some kids need less time while some require longer, and that is okay. Make sure you create an arrangement that is consistent with the kid’s current routine.
If you cannot stay in your home with your child for the entire week, potty training your autistic child might take longer. So, we’d recommend clearing your schedule or consulting an expert for the training process.
Make Toilet Training Fun and Rewarding
Choose an exciting toilet seat for your little champ that features cartoon characters or anything else they are obsessed with. Consider making the trip to the bathroom a fun experience by dancing, singing, or bringing toys and balloons in the bathroom.
You can encourage pooping or peeing by rewarding your kid. A great way to do this is by offering candy after they’ve used the toilet. Celebrate your child’s achievement, no matter how small!
If your child is afraid of the toilet, show them that there is nothing scary. You can accomplish this by going to the bathroom with your little one. Try spending time in the toilet with the lid either open or shut to make them feel comfortable.
Focus on the Kid’s Communication
Depending on your kid’s functional level and age, you can utilize various communication devices like bells, picture-exchange cards or other tools to help them communicate non-verbally. This is also helpful if your child doesn’t talk yet, suffers from a speech delay or has any other communication issues.
Your autistic child may see toilet training negatively and go into their shell.