Does anybody have any good tips for how to help a non-verbal child communicate that she needs to go to the bathroom? Right now we are trained...not her. Thanks
I suggest the book "Toilet Training for Individual w/ Autism and Related Disorders" by Maria Wheeler. It might have some helpful information.
That book was also very helpfull for us when our son was going through it. he was 6. He is still mostly nonverbal althoug sign has worked wonders for his communication. for him it seemed to be a fear of the toilet and the sound it made he still puts his hads over his ears when he flushes but he can at least get it done with out help. I can remember the frustration of it well so I disected every step of the process and broke down each thing to find the barrier for him at each place in the process. early on we used a pec symbol then paired it with a sign form the Adult the added a verbal he now is self suficent but when he has to go while we are out of the house he will tell me "potty please" while giving the sign for bathroom. Hope that was helpfull. I know how had the comm. factor can be in a nonverbal.
We've been working with our son for the past 7 months to potty train. We've gotten some great advice and help from his teachers at school. We took away the diapers completely, and moved to pull-ups ONLY AT NIGHT. The point is to make them feel uncomfortable. Accidents WILL happen, but that's also the point. You want the child to feel the discomfort of wetting and pooping.
We began taking our son to the potty every 45 minutes and sitting him down and waiting....and waiting....when and if something finally happened we then sang a song and did a dance. You must reward the child with your attention and praise when they use the potty. Don't be afraid to act ridiculous. Give high fives and re-enforce "You did it."
Prepare to have your furniture peed and pooped on. Kiss your carpet goodbye. I think if you're like me, you'll gladly trade all the beautiful furniture and carpet for a toilet-trained child.
The process is slow, but it pays off.
My son is non-verbal so we still haven't been able to have him tell us, or express to us that he has to go. He is doing well however. We haven't bought diapers in 7 months, and I couldn't be happier.
The key to success is getting over the accidents and realizing that they are going to happen, but they will happen less and less over time.
You must get rid of the diapers, don't think it's okay to use them now and then, because if they feel that diaper there they will use it and you will be back to square one.
Good luck moms and dad's.
What worked best for my son was to take away the pull-ups all together!! He had no problem being wet in a pull-up, but HATES being wet in big boy underpants. The problem with pull-ups is that they keep kids to dry and many kids with Autism need to feel really uncomfortable in order to get the hang of potty training. Remember that accidents will happen whether your child has Autism or not. Heck I wet the bed at night until I was 8 years old...LOL If our son does have an accident which is rare, he goes right to his room and changes his clothes immediately. When he was in pull-ups he could careless whetehr he had wet himself or not. The only time our 5 year old wears a pull-up is at night when he goes to bed, and recently he has been staying dry overnight so maybe inteh next month or two we will be able to ditch the overnight pull-ups too :)
I would also teach him a sign or to get a picture to let you know that he has to go.
My six year old autistic grandson has been toilet trained for about 8 months now. We tried everything including taking him every 30 minutes, rewarding him and wearing big boy underwear. He would go when we took him but did not acquire the sensation of knowing he had to go until we started taking him to an Occupational Therapist. This worked wonders and among helping him to tolerate hair cuts, certain sounds and to wear different type of clothing, he is now fully toilet trained. He goes by himself and hardly ever has an accident. I can't recommend this type of therapy enough. It has helped my grandson achieve miracles that we thought would never happen.
My son was 4 before he was totally trained.I had tryed everything.I had even taken away his pull ups and put real underwear on him.Didn't matter...he'd mess in them anyway...so one day I was soooo discouraged that I said no more under wear....I know it sounds cruel but I really had tryed everything and nothing worked.
But after the first day of having no underwear ...guess what...he was trained just like that.
I think what did it was he didn't like having a cold bottom.
Where your child isn't talking I would definitly try using pictures and sign language.
The best advice I received was place the child on the toilet no more than 15 minutes immediately after eating anything, this will reduce stress of trying too frequently. When a person eats gravity pulls it down and pretty much gives a person a feeling of been too full and have to relieve themselves. Next time you eat, see how long it is before you feel you have to go. This was what broke the cycle for us besides making sure he was getting medication for constipation. First we used Benefiber then added miralax(dilute is small amount of water then add to any drink, no taste). The combination of the 2 in his favorite juice was just what he needed. Encopresis was difficult enough, especially when he would make himself hold it in on purpose. We used books and read to him, added a portable DVD player with favorite movies, toys on a portable plastic rubbermaid type 3 drawer with rollers on them. Before that we bought at least 6 different dvd's to help him, they helped a little. Good luck, it is soo tough sometimes, keep a smile, body language is important even if they do not understand verbal instructions. We also encouraged him to flush to his heart's content, this was a huge obsticle but it came and passed with success.
My son will five in December and he can go pee-pee in the potty but not poop. A few months back he did poop in the potty about three times. And now we can't get him to do it all the time. He hides where ever he can and does it in his underwear. I have tried putting him on the potty at the times of him hiding and he holds it in. We have tried everything!!! Pictures, award systems, time outs and even making him clean himself. One time we even tried giving him chocolate donuts and it still hasn't worked, also choc. ship cookies, candy bars, and m&ms. But he still prefers to hide and use it in his underwear. Any advice, I am open to any ideas. Thanks all.
O.k this will most likly seem extreem to most but it worked for us and although there were MANY tears at the end he was a champ. I have posted before about the book that was most helpfull but sometimes it is our wost battles that pull us out of the darkness and into the light. My son had been peepee trained for about a year and still not pooping in the toilet. he would hold it all day at school get home run in his room lock the door put on a pull up and go poop. come out and say poopoo yuk. so after doing my investigation into the problem I descided he was going to have to get over the sitting thing on the toilet and just power through. so the next day when he came through the door I ran after him got him in the bath room( much kikking and dragging) got his pants off and sat him on the toilet well after the screaming and struggling poop enden up everywhere but in the toilet due to the struggles and inabiletie to hold it any longer. so next day. I prepared for this one. small stool for me to sit on nothin else in the batroom no rugs books toys nothing. the we did it again I had to physicly restrain him onto the toilet.( I sat infront of him on the stool and did a bear hug trapping his arms and leggs and giving moderate pressure down to keep him on the seat(padded totd seat on reg. toilet.) well after all the strainning and screeming about 15min. it happened in the toilet and all of the sudden I could see the light come on in his eyes. he grabed the toile paper I gave him some and showed him hand over hand how to wipe. (while standing) I will say that 15 min was one of the most tramatic of my parenting life but I knew in my heart that we would make it and that for him he had to get through it no matter what. This process went on for about 2 weeks straight only minimal tears though after the first time and after those 2 weeks he has only had one acident and that was on a 10 hour car ride. I will say to this day he will pee Standing up then turn and sit down to poop but you know he dose it all on his own and dose it anywhere. Our childern require our BEST efforts even when it is the toughest. I hope my story was helpfull and I hope all goes smoothly for you.
Today is the day. Live in the moment. The choice is ours.
Have you tried putting the potty in his hiding place??
My daughter was and is very private and embarrassed by anything related to going to the bathroom and being seen naked.
This may not be of any help as my daughter is high functioning but sometimes it is just about doing it their way.
I made a sign for my son. If Potty (picture of toilet) Then Oreo (picture of Oreo cookies). Below that I put Clapping Hand and "YEAH Victor!" Then I put the signs around the house at the TV, on each bathroom door, and refrigerator. He was using alot of "IF/THEN" picture statements at school, so he recogized the idea. Then we would go to the potty and he would sign "cookie" and I would let him have the cookie there if he wanted to. He loved double stuffed oreo cookies, so that was his treat. It probably wasn't the most ideal way of doing it, but he's about 95% potty trained now. Sometimes he would go to the potty, just because he wanted the cookie. He still sleeps in a pull-up but its not always wet in the morning. He's 5 years old now. We also sent signs (letter sized paper) to the daycare and school with oreos as well.
If he did go potty, we always announced it and gave high fives or clapped. I used the Boardmaker Program, same as the one the school used. If you call them and tell them you are a parent, they will sell you the older version for a cheaper price. Just know the older version is not compatible with Vista. You could probably ask their teacher or therapist to make one up for you as well or just pull pictures off the internet. I would recommend a simple picture or the icon they are already used to using.
Mother of son with autism
El Paso, TX
My son Jack still at the age of 7 has issues about the toilet. His revolves around his intrest in his games. Jack has aspergers and his one joy is video games(any kind). Jack tends to play and not realize he has to use the bathroom. He told me his brain told him it was ok to go in his pants because he "was a video fanatic and had to finish his game." We took the games away and used it as a reward for the times he uses the potty and doesn't get poop everywhere. 5 minutes for each successful potty time. He keeps track with tic marks. I feel bad about taking away his one joy but I am tired of cleaning up poop. (I do make him help me clean as well but it doesn't bother him)
My son Rowan is 5 and he recently potty because potty trained. We started trying when he was 3-ish. Seems like we tried it all, rewards like a sticker or goldfish crackers, high fices & singing, potty dolls, books, videos. We sat with him, reminded him, had him on a potty schedule. We bought special underwear, special potty chairs, special potty seats. We took him with us when we went, we had pec cards, a pec picture schedule posted with all the potty steps. And the result ... almost nothing. He seemed to care very little for any praise or reward or any other motivator we could give him. Then a funny thing happened ... we stopped trying. We were moving into a new apartment and we had heard how major life changes can be very disruptive to children potty training & also to autistic children who need routines. We figures we'd just back off and try again in a few weeks. Then all of the sudden while we were settling in the first week he just started going all on his own. He doesn't tell us, or show us, he just does it. It seems like he just doesn't want a fuss made over it. In public its a lot harder since he is not inclined to let us know he needs to go, so we have frequent accidents, but slowly he is learning to let us know & we are learning his signs of discomfort (he grabs his crotch or puts his hand on his butt or in his pants). When we notice this we ask "Rowan do you need to go Potty, yes or no" & he is pretty good about answering yes or no questions.