How To Handle Potty Accidents On-The-Go
Did you know that every time you make a mistake, new pathways are created in your brain from the experience? It’s true! Without making mistakes, we wouldn’t know what NOT to do the next time we try to master a new skill!
Thomas Edison once said, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to always try just one more time.” Accidents aren't an indicator that your child isn't learning properly - if anything, the accidents are helping them learn!
It's important to remember that potty training is a PROCESS and it takes time to master this new skill. If your child never has an accident, they will never learn:
How long they can hold their bladder until they need to release it.
What their body feels like right before pee and poop start to come out.
How long it takes to get to the nearest bathroom in time.
How uncomfortable it feels to have pee or poop in their underwear and/or all over their body.
Okay, so now that we know all of this, does it make urine-stained car seats any easier to clean out? Does it make it any less stressful when your child has an accident in the middle of story time at the library? NO! I get it - and trust me I speak from experience!
While accidents are absolutely a normal part of the potty training process, I'm sure you've wondered how these messes can be more easily contained on the go, right?!
Many people are tempted to put a Pull-Up or diaper back on for those "just in case" scenarios - longer car rides, trips to the store where a public bathroom isn't an ideal option, outings to the park or indoor play place, etc. But doing that, even on short, sporadic occasions, can send mixed signals and skew the expectations for your child. You want them to learn that pee and poop only belong in the potty. But using Pull-Ups every so often sends the message that it's okay to pee or poop in their pants sometimes. They also won't have time in the moment to stop and think, "Wait, am I wearing a Pull-Up or do I have to find a potty?!"
Well, I'm so happy to say that I've discovered a product that not only saves you from having to clean up big messes when you're out and about, but it also doesn't hinder your toddler's potty training progress or send mixed messages!
You're probably wondering, what in heaven's name is this magical miracle worker?! The answer: Sposie Dribbles Pads! These absorbent potty training pads are incredibly discrete and provide absorbing qualities to help soak up accidents, giving your toddler and yourself enough time to make it to the bathroom to finish on a successful note!
Simply stick a Sposie Dribbles pad in your child's underwear and give your car seat cleaning skills a much-needed break! By keeping your child in underwear instead of resorting to Pull-Ups sometimes, it still sends the clear message that all pee and poop is expected to go in the potty from now on. Dribbles pads are surprisingly thin enough to not interfere with your child's ability to read their body cues and connect them to their brain signals, which encourages the ongoing development of self-initiation.
Though venturing outside the home can be super scary in the first few days and weeks of potty training, it doesn't have to be! Here are several extra tips to help prepare you for this adventure:
Pack a survival kit
Put Sposie Dribbles pads in your toddler's underwear before leaving the house if you're concerned that they might have an accident
Bring rewards along for successes
Point out all bathrooms in public areas
Tour public bathrooms (to create positive associations and minimize fear of the unknown)
No matter how prepared you are for outings, fluke accidents can still happen. It's important to prepare yourself ahead of time for trips to take a bit longer and for your patience to be spread a little thinner. It can be difficult to find anything constructive to say to your child when you are cleaning up a mess after recently reminding your toddler to keep their clothes dry.
Here are a few helpful things you can say to your child after they have an accident:
“Oops, it looks like you’ve peed on the floor.”
“Remember, pee and poop ONLY go in the potty.”
“You can try again next time.”
“You’re still learning.”
Overall, it is very important that you don’t scold or shame your kiddo in any way because an accident is just that, an accident! However, it is also very important to keep your expectations very clear and do not (unintentionally) give them permission to have accidents by downplaying them with a comment like, “it’s okay”, or “accidents happen”.
It is important to set clear and easy-to-understand boundaries but to also remain calm and use every accident as a teaching moment for our littles. They are learning and so are we! When children know what is expected of them, they won’t be confused or accidentally misunderstand your expectations which will allow them more opportunities for success.
So, the next time you have to get out of the house for a bit with your toddler, remember to put your kiddo in Sposie Dribbles pads and pack a few extras for the road to give you BOTH the added confidence you need to tackle this new milestone!
Don’t give up! You’ve got this!
Happy Pottying! xo