Are you worried that your child is due to be attending school when they are not yet toilet independent/potty trained? Or have you been told that their child can’t access childcare or attend school because of a toileting/continence issue? I’m here to help.
After my recent post Potty learning in partnership with your childcare provider, I was contacted by so many parents about their struggles with their child being excluded or their worries about starting school/childcare. I felt so impassioned by this issue that I created some new content for my Advanced Potty Training course to address it. This new module contains practical tips to help you to succeed and avoid your child being excluded on the basis of not being toilet independent/continent.
Common causes of wetting and soiling
Children are capable of preparing to learn the 40 skills they need to become toilet independent from birth. Between 18 and 24 months, if given the opportunity to practice, they are developmentally capable of doing the majority of this process independently. Late potty training (beginning to learn these skills after the age of 3) however is linked to bowel and bladder problems in children. (Bakker, E et al. 2002) On average, full toilet independence (mastery of all 40 skills) can usually be attained before 5 years of age. You should always seek help if your child is aged 5 or above and having regular day or night wetting (enuresis) and soiling (encopresis) issues – the ERIC website has some great resources for you.
We have created resources for potty learning with Neurodiverse/SEND children (such as those with autism spectrum disorders or disabilities) and potty learning resources for children with sensory processing issues. It’s also worth mentioning that wetting and soiling can be an indication of abuse in some cases so we’d also like to signpost our resources for this.
what are the risks of your child attending school without the right support in place?
A survey of potentially stressful events in 2000 school children revealed that wetting at school was considered the third most catastrophic event after losing a parent and going blind (Sureshkumar, et al. 2001).
Not only can wetting and soiling issues cause a lot of anxiety for your child, but regular continence issues can also cause skin irritations or infections and increase the risk of bullying from other children or staff in the setting. It is critical for your childcare/school setting to support your child and excluding your child is not a valid solution.
What parents and carers can do
Sign up for our Advanced Potty Training course now, or use the form below to receive just our Excluded from School/Childcare module for free via email.
References: Sureshkumar, Premala & Craig, Jonathan & Roy, L.Paul & Knight, JF. (2001). Daytime urinary incontinence in primary school children: A population-based survey. The Journal of pediatrics. 137. 814-8. 10.1067/mpd.2000.109196.
E Bakker 1, J D Van Gool, M Van Sprundel, C Van Der Auwera, J J Wyndaele (2002) Results of a questionnaire evaluating the effects of different methods of toilet training on achieving bladder control. 12175408 DOI: 10.1046/j.1464-410x.2002.02903.x