Wiping After a BM?

Updated on February 12, 2009
A.B. asks from Colorado Springs, CO
10 answers

At what age should a child (girl) be able to do this? Is it easier for a child to do it sitting on the toilet, like an adult? Or should they stand up and bend over, the way I do it for her now? Are there any clever methods I can use to help teach her the correct technique? Right now she is fully potty trained (day and night), but when she tries to do this task "by herself" the result is very dirty underwear! (I know that girls, especially, need to wipe from front to back to prevent infections.)

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So What Happened?

Thanks for the advise. I am going to get the wipes and let her try it herself standing up, with a final wipe from me!

More Answers



answers from Denver on

My godmother taught my daughter in a matter of an hour. She had her stand up, and reach around. They have little arms and it is too hard while on the toilet. SO have your daughter stand up and move her arm around and do it front to back. I used the wet flushable wipes until she was more able to make sure she was clean. I would say at four you need to supervise too to make sure it is done correctly and her hands are well cleaned. My son is four and is still working on it, I do a double check to make sure it is done correctly and he has washed his hands well.

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answers from Denver on

I agree with Alli B - flushable wipes work wonders. I have a 4 and 6 year old. The 6 year old does a great job with the wipes. I am still in charge of the 4 year olds bottom, but we all use the wipes now. I can't even imagine just using tp anymore. You just get so much cleaner with wipes.

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answers from Colorado Springs on

I am also trying to teach my 2yr old daughter how to wipe herself. With my son it was harder to teach him the shake, shake, after urinating, since I don't have that plumbing. My husband is military and was deployed during potty training time for our son.
With our daughter I'm concerned about infections if she doesn't wipe right when she urinates, I taught her to "Dab, Dab, Down", we kinda make a song of it. The bowel movement wiping is taking longer to learn, I'm helping out with that. If she tries to wipe herself after a BM we sing the song from Dora "We did it, We did it, yeah we did it, we went to the bathroom and you wiped yourself, you did it (if you've seen Dora I think you get how the rest of the song goes)....", then sometimes if I think she might not have gotten clean enough I do a final wipe just to make sure. As with some of the other's who have replied, we only use flushable wipes in our house, it seems to make it easier for her to get clean. Good Luck!

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answers from Provo on

my 5 yr old wipes while sitting on the toilet now, but he didn't at first. it's something he started doing on his own one day. my 3 yr old prefers to be off the toilet to wipe. i think it has to do with how comfortable they are balancing. i also keep a box of baby wipes in the bathroom because sometimes they get frustrated with not being able to wipe it all off with toilet paper, or it takes so many swipes that their patience runs out. a baby wipe finishes the job better than toilet paper sometimes. we keep a little trash can next to the toilet for the wipes.

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answers from Pocatello on

I don't know if this helps, but you might want to try getting her flushable wipes to use. It'll let her still do it on her own, but will be much more effective in the cleaning process :) I know trying to get stains out of every pair of panties she owns can be frustrating. Still, I think it's important that you let her do it as long as she's not in any health danger from it. Good luck :)

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answers from Pocatello on

Have your daughter wipe herself first, then you check to make sure she did a good job. YOu can also have her use two bunches of toilet paper and wipe twice before you check. She will get the hang of it. Once she is in preschool or kindergarten it is really important for her to be able to wipe by herself. Good luck!



answers from Denver on

Thanks for asking this question, I have a 4 year old who will yell from the bathroom, "Im done pooping", meaning, "come wipe me". But she as promised by 5 she will do it on her own. I hope so. .



answers from Billings on

I got some of those flushable wipes for my daughter, and asked her to try wiping by herself, and then I would come do a "final wipe" and make sure she got it all. I explaied the front to back thing, and made shure she washed up well afterwards. It didn't take long before she was able to do it alone. She does it while sitting on the toilet.



answers from Pueblo on

HI A.,
I didn't teach my kids to wipe themselves until just a couple of months before they started school. With my 2 oldest it was kindergarten but with my 3rd it was preschool and he was just over 4yrs.

I would have them sit on the toilet and lean forward then showed them how much paper to get, how to fold it, then reach around and wipe. If they missed or they messed up I would wipe them and tell them to pay attention to where I'm wiping so they can know exactly where to wipe themselves. It took a few days but they got it no problem. Good luck!

C. C.



answers from Denver on

A., I had the same issue with my now 5 year old daughter. What I have found, is to have her stand up and wipe with tp and then with a wipe to avoid a big mess.

Good luck.


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