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Time to tackle the loo

It’s that moment when you think your little one might want to move on from nappies to the potty, or from the potty to the loo. Big steps. But the sooner they master it – the more confident they’ll feel at school.


Things your child should be able to do before they start school

  • Keep themselves nice and clean
  • Know why they should wash their hands – such as fighting germs and staying healthy
  • Wear pants – not nappies or pull-ups


Helpful tips and activities

Things you can do to help them start using the loo and improve their skills.

  • Help them play at putting their teddy or doll on the toilet
  • Dress them in clothes that are easy to pull on and take off
  • Praise them lots when they get things right
  • Try not to get frustrated – there will be little accidents, but don’t give up
  • Make it part of a regular potty or loo routine – go before you leave the house, before bed etc
  • Get your little one to flush the loo and watch what happens
  • Once they are out of nappies try not to put them back on – it will confuse them
  • Show them how to wash their hands
  • Start to use a potty at about 18 – 24 months old
  • Look at books about using the loo together like – Aliens Love Underpants, Have You Seen My Potty, Pants And More Pants
  • Encourage good habits by using a sticker reward chart – kids love seeing how well they have done


Signs to look out for

Things that let you know your child is developing the skills they need.

  • Feels uncomfortable and pulls at their nappy
  • Tells an adult they need to go to the toilet
  • Tries to put on and take off easy-to-remove clothing
  • Goes to the toilet when asked by an adult
  • Puts their hands under a running tap and rubs them together
  • Starts to wash and dry their hands themselves


Need more help or advice?

Talk to your Health Visitor, they’ll always be happy to answer your questions. Or if they can’t help, they’ll certainly be able to put you in touch with someone who can.

Still need help?

Send an enquiry to our friendly Healthy Sandwell team.

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