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Tips and resources for parents on successful potty training methods.

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WebMD Expert Discussion: Potty Training: Boys vs. Girls

Who's harder to potty train: boys or girls? Can boys and girls both be potty trained the same way? In the WebMD online discussion about Potty Training, guest parenting expert Laura Jana, MD, offers insights into the differences and similarities between the sexes when it comes to toilet training.

It's true that, on average, boys tend to potty train a bit later than girls, says Jana. But the pattern doesn't hold true for every child. (Her own daughter completed potty training long after her two sons did.) She says that, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, toddlers and preschool boys have a tendency to be more physically active than girls, and therefore less likely to sit still -- a factor that could certainly contribute to potty training delays.

Jana and one mom agree that every child will train in his or her own way, and own time. Although, as they get older, boys will urinate standing up, Jana recommends first training boys to use the potty sitting down. This eliminates the temptation to spray and keeps them sitting down long enough to deposit bowel movements in the toilet.

One mother admits to using what she called the "lazy mom's approach" -- waiting to potty train until her children could dress and undress themselves. So her children's ages at training varied from 2 to 4 years old. She found that the hardest thing about it was accepting that when they potty trained wasn't her choice -- it was theirs.

Have you experienced potty training differences between boys and girls? Share your experiences with the community.

Discussion led by Laura Jana, MD Guest Expert
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Guest Expert What is a guest expert?

Laura Jana, MD, is an accomplished parenting advisor and child health advocate, a proud mother of three, and an Omaha-based pediatrician. More

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