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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: When should I begin potty training my child?
A: Most children are ready to start potty training between 22 and 30 months of age, but you should wait until your child is physically and emotionally ready to start potty training. Starting too early can cause frustration for you and your child. Before beginning your child should have control of his or her bladder and bowels, be able to remove his or her own clothing, and be able to use the potty seat or chair. Your child should want to cooperate, so stop if he or she becomes reluctant. Read more on potty training »

Q: How long does toilet training typically take?
A: Boys and girls who start the toilet training process between 22 and 30 months of age may not all become fully trained at the same time. Boys tend to be fully trained by 38 months, and girls by 36 months, according to a study in the Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. However, even a fully trained child may still need help with certain things, such as wiping after a bowel movement until four or five and using public restrooms until five or six.

Q: What do I do if I am concerned about my child’s development?
A: While it is important to remember that each child develops differently, speak with your child’s pediatrician if you have concerns.

Q: How many words does my two-year-old know?
A: The language development of most two year olds creates vocabularies that span 50 to 100 words. By age five, children know and can use thousands of words.

Q: Why do people call it the"terrible twos"?
A: Between the ages of one and two, your child will continue to develop strong bonds with loved ones while at the same time wanting more independence. The conflicting desires can be frustrating for toddlers and for their parents.

Q: I have some concerns about vaccinating my child. How do I know the vaccines are safe?
A: Please speak with your child’s pediatrician before deciding not to vaccinate your child. Vaccines in the United States are very safe and are studied extensively before being released to the public. There is no evidence that receiving more than one immunization at a time causes any harm to your child, nor will they cause autism. Choosing not to vaccinate your child puts him or her at serious risk for illness. See the recommended immunization schedule »

Q: How long should my child be in a rear-facing car seat?
A: The American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommend that all children be rear-facing until they are two years old or until they reach the highest weight/height allowed by the car safety seat manufacturer. At the very least, children should remain rear-facing until they are at least one year old and 20 pounds. This means that once your infant outgrows the car seat carrier, the next seat should be a convertible seat that is placed rear-facing. The child should continue to ride rear-facing until he or she is at least two years old or reaches the height/weight limits imposed by the child car seat manufacturer for rear-facing passengers. Read other safety tips »

Q: Is there a list of safety concerns in my home that I should be aware of?
A: Read our safety concerns page for information on preventing illness, baby-proofing and preventing poisoning.

Q: My child’s a picky eater. How can I make sure he gets the nutrition he needs?
A: Children tend to accept new foods with a great deal of hesitation. In the meantime, show your child good eating habits through example and find at least one food from each group that your child will readily eat to keep on hand. Talk to your child's pediatrician about other ways to encourage proper nutrition.

Q: When my child becomes ill, can I give her a reduced dose of medicine that we have on hand?
A: If your child’s age is not listed on the bottle, then it is not appropriate for him or her to take that medication. You should never give your child medication for adults (even a reduced dose), and some medications should be avoided all together. Read more about proper dosing and view dosing sheets »