5 Helpful Tips To Potty Train Your Three Year Old Baby

Potty Train

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Your baby is three. It is a magical age. Your child now has her unique personality and quirks. Three is also the age of temper tantrums and meltdowns. Yes, there’s never a dull moment when you have a three-year-old at home.

But the million dollar question is, ‘is she potty trained?’

By three, your child is more than ready for some potty training. With pre-school looming large, your potty training endeavors can’t wait any longer. And let’s be honest; diapers are costly. It’s time your baby stopped using them and saves you some money!

But, how? How do you convince a stubborn three-year-old that the potty seat is a lot of fun? If you are looking for ways to get things going, hop on. Let’s learn few tips on how to potty train a 3 year old baby.

How To Potty Train A Three Year Old Baby?

Now, don’t feel guilty. So your friend’s little angel was fully potty trained by age two. That has no bearing on your baby. Remember, all babies are different. If you try to potty train your baby before she is ready, you may make things worse. And even research says that potty training your baby before she is two can increase the chances of daytime wetting later (1). So, you are doing good, don’t worry.

But the challenge now is to get your small person go potty in the bathroom. It’s time she said goodbye to diapers. We have compiled this list of the most common problems you might face while potty training a three year old and ways to handle them.

[ Read: Potty Training In Three Days ]

1. When Rewards Don’t Work:

You have tried bribing your baby with everything she holds dear – from candies to Barbies. But nothing works. She remains resolutely unwilling to skip the diaper.


The terrible twos and threes are called terrible for a reason. Her favorite word right now is ‘No’. Bribing will just not work for a strong willed baby. Try reverse psychology instead. Tell her you don’t want her to use the potty. This should awaken her stubborn streak and encourage her to use the potty.

2. She Will Only Go In ‘HER’ Potty Seat:

So, you are in the process of potty training and are even making some progress. But then disaster strikes. You go to a relative’s place without diapers and your little one refuses to use the bathroom. She wants her potty seat.


Yes, it is possible for your baby to hold it till she gets home. No, that’s not healthy. But you can’t blame her for this problem. Children need familiarity to feel comfortable. If you suddenly ask her to use a foreign bathroom, don’t be surprised by her rebellion. Don’t lose your patience either. Remember, she is just three!

What you can do instead is carry a travel potty seat wherever you go. This way, she’ll have a part of ‘home’ with her. If she is still reluctant, try making the bathroom trip adventurous. For you, it’s just a bathroom, for a three-year-old it is a place to explore.

3. So Close, Yet So Far:

Your baby was almost potty trained when suddenly things changed. Now she refuses to use the potty seat again. What’s up?


Small things can make your child’s life feel out of control – to her. Remember, kids thrive on a schedule. Anything that disrupts their schedule can also disrupt potty training. Now will be the perfect time to revisit her schedule and set it right. Don’t try anything new. Stick to the method that worked earlier. In any case, studies show that all methods of potty training are equally effective (2).

4. Peeing Is Okay, But Poop Is Only For The Diaper:

This can be a frustrating situation. Your baby knows how to use the bathroom, but refuses to poop in it.


There may be a number of causes why your little one pops only in her diaper. The diaper is a part of her life. Giving it up is not an easy task for her. Don’t try to hurry your baby. Take it slow. If she’ll only poop in a diaper, make her do so in the bathroom. Once she is comfortable doing this, move on to the next step. Make her sit on the potty seat with her diaper on. Let her poop as usual. Once she is ready to move ahead, take off her diaper, but keep it in sight. Soon, she’ll be using the potty seat like a pro!

5. She Holds ‘It’ Forever:

This is a common problem among children. Some children refuse to poop. They can hold it for a day if need be!


This may be a case of constipation. Your child may have experienced pain the last time she pooped in the bathroom. Now she is scared. Make sure her diet has enough fiber to ease constipation. If that doesn’t help, talk to your doctor.

Some More Tips To Help You Along:

If you still have trouble knowing how to potty train your 3 year old, try the following tips:

  1. Stop talking about potty training. Yes, give your child the power to decide when she wants to use the bathroom. Don’t make it a power struggle.
  2. Use the right kind of incentive to encourage your kid to use the bathroom. And keep the treats rare. Don’t forget to make a lot of fuss – clapping and cheering – when she does use the bathroom.
  3. Mark her progress. Use a calendar exclusively for her. Paste a star each time she uses the bathroom. This will enable her to see how far she has come.
  4. Ditch diapers and pull-ups. Put her in underwear instead. If you can, invest in underwear that looks attractive to your baby. Once she realizes that not using the bathroom means soiling her favorite underwear, she just may change her tune.
  5. Never punish your kid for accidents. You need to accept that it is impossible to potty train without a few accidents.

The average age of potty training around the world is 23 months. But statistics mean nothing when you are dealing with a strong willed child. Patience is the key! Take a deep breath each time your child has an accident. Remember, there aren’t many 20-year olds walking around in diapers. All kids learn to use the bathroom – sooner or later!

Hope you liked our post on how to potty train a three year old. How are you trying to potty train your baby? Are you using a specific method? Tell us in the comments section below!

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