By GMA TEAM, ABC News
(NEW YORK) — For some parents, potty training kids can be a daunting experience.
But these days, thanks to social media, parents can turn to experts like Dr. Jazmine McCoy — author of The First-Time Parent’s Guide to Potty Training — on Instagram for tips and tricks to make the process as seamless as possible.
“I interweave my knowledge as a clinical psychologist with also my practical experience as a mom myself to help moms not only learn the tools that they need to become positive parents, but also to feel less alone in this journey,” McCoy told ABC News’ Good Morning America.
McCoy’s tips came in handy when Danielle Duckworth’s 26-month-old son, Barrett, recently stopped showing interest in using the potty.
“He did well for the first week and then the weekend came and he doesn’t want to have anything to do with the potty now,” Duckworth told Good Morning America.
To get Barrett back on track, McCoy recommended going back to basics like loading up on liquids and prompting him to use the potty every 30 to 60 minutes.
Read on for more of Dr. McCoy’s tips:
When’s the best time to start potty training?
Dr. McCoy said that she sees parents start potty training their children when they’re around 27 months. But instead of focusing on age, she suggests looking for a series of developmental cues.
“I recommend that you focus on paying attention to the subtle developmental cues of readiness,” said McCoy. “Being able to follow really simple directions, having the ability to understand that certain items go into certain places, showing interest in the potty.”
Use visual cues
“You can use like a timer to have a visual cue for you and him as well that, ‘hey, it’s time to at least sit on the potty,"” said Dr. McCoy.
Then, as your child shows more mastery, you can gradually work towards less prompting.
Use children’s books and stuffed animals
To help your kids master potty training, Dr. McCoy suggests using children’s books and videos that teach them how to potty train.
“You can also role-play with figurines or stuffed animals or dolls,” said Dr. McCoy. “There are different potty scenarios, so mimic that scenarios that are going on at home.”
While treats as rewards for using the potty may be controversial, Dr. McCoy said treats can be a great tool as long as they are small and are given immediately after the child is done washing their hands.
“Once they have shown consistent signs of mastery, you’re gonna gradually taper down the reward so then they have to work harder for it,” said Dr. McCoy.
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