Toilet Training Tool Kit
This tool kit was prepared by Anne Davalla, MA, CCC-SLP and Linda Downing, PhD.
For any individual, the benefits of being toilet trained include increased independence and quality of life, greater social and life opportunities, dignity, improved personal hygiene and well-being. The skill of toileting opens doors of increased independence, privilege, and opportunity for your child at home, in school, at work, and in the community.
This tool kit is designed to take you through the steps of preparing and planning toilet training for a child with special needs. As you begin, keep in mind that a child on the autism spectrum is likely to have unique challenges during this process. This kit addresses the emotional and social challenges as well as the practical demands of toilet training for both the child and the caregivers in this process. The goal is for the young person to be as independent with toileting and related skills as his cognitive ability, awareness, communication skills, and self-help skills allow.
As you use the tool kit, determine what works for your child and your family. There is no one-size-fits-all method and toilet training is likely to be a very slow process. As you address the various challenges associated with toilet training, you will also be helping your child in other areas such as communication and self-management.
Milestones provides consultation services to all family members, professionals, and self-advocates. Services include connecting participants to resources and providing general information and assistance. We also offer a free Autism Help Desk. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at (216) 464-7600 or
Download a condensed version of this tool kit.
Part 1. What to Consider Before Getting Started
Part 2. When to Start Toilet Training
Part 3. Toilet Training Steps
Part 4. Developing a Toileting Plan
Part 5. Habit Training
Part 6. Creating a Calm and Welcoming Bathroom Environment
Part 7. Communicating With Your Child
Part 8. Fear of New Situations
Part 9. Using Rewards
Part 10. Toilet Training Away From Home
Part 11. Cooperation Between Home and School or Daycare
Part 12. Dealing With Your Own Anxieties and Frustrations
Part 13. Refusal to Participate in Toilet Training
Part 14. Medical Factors
Part 15. Diapers and Pull-Ups During Toilet Training
Part 16. When is a Child Too Old for Toilet Training?
Part 17. Toilet Training for Older Children
Part 18. Success At Home But Not At School or Vice Versa
Part 19. Use of Books, Videos, and Other Visuals
Part 20. Toilet Training at Night
Part 21. Handling Accidents
Part 22. Increasing Independence With Toileting
Part 23. Using a Visual Schedule
Part 24. Regression
Part 25. Troubleshooting Toilet Training
Part 26. References
Part 27. Resources
- First Diagnosis Tool Kit
- Guardianship Tool Kit
- Afterschool Activities & Independent Leisure Skills Tool Kit
- Camp, Social & Recreation Tool Kit
- Challenging Behaviors Tool Kit
- Homework Tool Kit
- Legal Resources Tool Kit
- Mental Health Tool Kit
- School Tool Kit
- Toilet Training Tool Kit
- Travel Tips
- Visual Supports Tool Kit