Friday, November 13, 2009

Potty Training with Cloth Diapers

When they learn I use cloth diapers, many people comment that potty training must be faster after using cloth. I have nothing to compare it to. Like anything, it probably depends on the child. With many cloth diapers offering stay-dry inners, the diapers in your stash may also play a role.

Even before cloth, I thought I would have children who trained early. This may have been wishful thinking or the fact that I trained before I was 2. With my daughter, however, her timetable was more important than mine. She showed interest in the potty soon after 2, but not much more than that. When she finally was ready, it took a full month before I would consider her mostly trained. So, the plan of just buying regular undies and skipping trainers did not pan out. Here's what I went with:

padded underwear- These were not helpful for me in the beginning. They didn't really hold much at all, so they didn't help with a real accident. They were good at the end, when they just had to catch a dribble here and there. I still use them at night in case we don't get to the potty in time-they'll help to catch the beginning of an accident.

Super Undies- These trainers are cute and worked well for us. The new style is even better-the quality is hard to show in online pictures. I like that these are stuffable, which I did when we were out. What I did find was that they hold an accident, but aren't really designed to hold it in for a long time like a diaper. They idea with trainers, though is that an accident is just that and should be changed quickly. You're fine for a while, but I wasn't comfortable letting it hold multiple wettings. If you ever looked at the original Super Undies, check out the new ones as they are even more improved.

Potty Scotty/Patty- These are really basic PUL trainers for those that want a waterproof trainer without a lot of expense. They lack the cuteness of the Super Undies, but they are functional. These aren't stuffable, but they are absorbent enough for an accident. The night version was also good for an accident, but didn't hold multiple wettings. I liked them more at the end of training for holding the occasional night accident.

Happy Heinys-These trainers are a lot "poufier" than the other brands. They are very stuffable, which is the reason for the poufiness. They weren't my favorite for daytime, but they are great at night. These are especially good for larger children who wet the bed at night. Custom sizes are available for larger sizes.

Some things I learned when training:
-If you need as many trainers as you do diapers, your child probably isn't ready for training. Start with a small amount of trainers (maybe 5-6 day trainers and a night trainer or two) and only add more if you need them.
-You may use trainers after training. For a while, I put a trainer on my daughter every night. After a couple of months of no accidents, I felt safe putting the lightly padded underwear. You may find that you revisit the trainers for long car rides, trips or new situations until you're confident your child knows to ask to use the potty in unfamiliar settings.
-Trainers don't sit as high on the waist, nor do they fit as tightly. Trainers are designed to fit more like real underwear, so they'll sit lower on the hips and should go up and down more easily than diapers.
-Snaps may help for messy accidents. In the beginning, I found that trainers with side snaps helped to keep a bowel accident from getting messier.

My daughter is fully trained now and I can't remember when the last accident was (although now that I've said that...). Good luck with your training and share any tips!



Will you be sad to leave all those cloth diapers behind?!

Chari said...

JJINJERSEY- I never thought anything like that before :-( Cloth diapers to me are like shoes are to many women! lol

Michelle said...

JJ, I will be sad, but we're still diapering my younger daughter, so I have a while yet. I've definitely heard of parents sad that cloth diapering day are over! I don't think that people have the same attachment to disposables :)