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Children in many countries of the world learn to use the toilet on their own before age 2 and even earlier, but why not in America? The technique used to potty train children at these early ages is being called elimination communication here in America and industrialized nations. This term, elimination communication was inspired by the traditional use of diaper-less baby care in less industrialized nations.
The terms elimination communication and natural infant hygiene were created by Ingrid Bauer and are used interchangeably in her book, Diaper Free! The Gentle Wisdom of Natural Infant Hygiene . Bauer observed during her travels to India and Africa that mothers carried their babies with no diapers without their babies having accidents. She observed what these mothers did and later she used the techniques on her own children and later began to share the diaper-less approach with other mothers and child care providers. Conscious Toilet Training written in 1979 by Laurie Boucke, also documented the diaper-less life for infants. Elimination communication is also viewed as a way to meet infants’ needs. It depends greatly on observing cues, signals, timing and changes in your baby’s behavior.
The benefits of elimination communication are it decreases families’ dependence on disposable diapers which reduces the environmental problem of discarding disposable diapers in landfills. It reduces the cost of washing cloth diapers and saves families money. Elimination communication babies are also free from health issues such as diaper rash and skin yeast infections from wet diapers.
The negatives for elimination communication according to Dr. Thomas B. Brazelton, is that it would not work in conventional industrialized nations as the mothers return to work after babies are born and there is lack of daily close contact with babies that is needed for the elimination communication to work. Most conventional training advice is based on research by Dr. Thomas B. Brazelton. He promotes the readiness approach. He supports that the readiness age for potty training is between 18 months to 2 years of age. He says that a child should be ready for potty training so as not to cause psychological damage or guilt for the parents if the child does not do well with potty training.
Other negatives is EC takes too much time and patience. Naps and travel can be difficult while using elimination communication because parents have to be in tune with cues, and signals of their baby while being preoccupied with travel activities.
Elimination communication potty training also called diaper-less or diaper-free toilet training is one of the trends today in potty training. Many parents participating in this method contend that this method is no more difficult than the conventional readiness method of potty training. EC parents say they save money and feel closer to their children because they learn to observe their needs closely and meet them.
P.S. Do you think children can be potty trained from birth and before age 1?
Is elimination communication practical?
Would you give elimination communication potty training a try and be diaper-free?
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