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How do you potty train an autistic child?

My son is 2 1/2 years old and is autistic. He is starting to show interest in potty training, because when his diaper is dirty, he removes it. Any advice for me about how to potty train him. He doesn't hold attention to things very much. Thanks for your help!


Asked by braluvseddie at 3:00 PM on Oct. 20, 2009 in Health

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Answers (4)
  • I was just talking about this. My son is 4 and still not trained. He is also Autistic. His doctors said some kids never train, and some are just late bloomers. We don't badger him about it, but we do keep potty training items around. We just bought him some undies, and tell him to wear them for about an hour a couple times a day, just so he can get used to the idea. Your child, in my opinion, based on how it went with mine at that age, is nowhere near ready for it. Ours showed interest at age 2, such as wanting to see what it was like, and sitting on the potty, but he didn't really grasp the idea of what he was supposed to do. If I were you, I'd wait until at least 3 to get more in depth with it, but still show potty videos, and keep the potty around. Just basically do a lot fof talking about the potty for now. Just my opinion. Hope it works out for you.

    Answer by NightPhoenix at 3:08 PM on Oct. 20, 2009

  • I have never trained an Autistic child. But I would train the child the same way I trained my other children. It would probably take longer that's all.

    Answer by louise2 at 3:11 PM on Oct. 20, 2009

  • My son has autism and he didn't fully train until he was 6. He started removing his diaper MUCH earlier, but didn't grasp the whole go in the potty thing. What worked for us was finding a much sought after item (at the time it was honeybuns) and the only time he EVER got that was when he went poop in the potty. We used PECS and had the potty card all over the house, we would take him like every hour and make him sit for 2-3 minutes. When he went, he got a honeybun. We didn't ever punish when he didn't go or when he went in his pullup, only rewarded when he did go.
    You can try it, we tried when he was 3 1/2 and he did train during full day preschool (he wouldn't go at school, pee or poop and would just hold it until he came home).
    Whether you decide to go ahead or wait - good luck!

    Answer by missanc at 3:16 PM on Oct. 20, 2009

  • I was watching the Supernanny. Not sure if anyone else has heard of her. I think she is great. She had a show on an Autistic child. She had a specialist come in and work with them. He wasnt talking... the showed him a treat and said treat and once he said it cheered and gave it to him. same thing with tickling.... they said tickle and would tickle him. He began to say the word and they would tickle him. Maybe when he takes it off... say potty and walk to the potty and see? not sure but its an idea? my husband as a friend that is autistic too... not sure if he is potty trained. hope that helps?

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:21 PM on Oct. 20, 2009