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Potty Training Autistic Children

The link below will take you to a series of articles on about potty training children on the Autism Spectrum.

In Summary:
1. Be prepared to be patient. It will probably take longer for your child with Autism to potty train than a child without disabilities.

2. Children with Autism can often have gastrointestinal problems. Make sure he is not suffering from constipation, diarrhea, bloating, or other "tummy" problems.

3. Kimberly Kroeger-Geoppinger, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist and assistant professor of pediatrics at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, says that the child's readiness signs might be very simple: "For us, the prerequisites include ambulation, the ability to get up and down -- and that's it."

4. Have your child drink a LOT of fluids while potty training. Increased trips to the toilet increase chances for success.

5. Buy needed supplies: Rewards, books, and a comfortable potty seat.

6. Prepare to spend the entire day in the bathroom. "have him or her sit on the toilet (taking breaks every half hour) for as long as you CAN. Dr. Kroeger and her team literally spend all day in the bathroom, from the time the child wakes up until he goes to bed. Drinks, food, and playtime can all take place in the bathroom."

7. It might take up to five or six days to see reliable results using the above methods.

8. Be aware of a habit some children with Autism might exhibit: Fecal Smearing. Children might do this "for one of only four reasons," she explains: "to get attention, to get something they want, to escape from something unpleasant, or to have or avoid a particular sensory experience."

This link will take you to the full series of articles on

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