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Therapy for Toileting Resistance

What ages does the Center for CBT treat for Toileting Resistance?

Preschool-aged Children

What is toileting resistance?

  • Toileting resistance occurs when a child has difficulty or regression with toileting.

    • This can include wetting and/or soiling.

  • Before age 5, struggles with toileting are considered developmentally normative, but these challenges may still warrant treatment and support. 

  • Children older than 5 years who are experiencing toileting issues related to wetting or soiling may be diagnosed with Enuresis or Encopresis. 

    • Enuresis is diagnosed when a child over the age of 5 is wetting their pants at least twice a week for three consecutive months.

    • Encopresis is diagnosed in a child older than 4 years who repeatedly passes stool into inappropriate places for at least three months. 

How do I know if my child needs treatment?

Toileting resistance can take on many forms.  Here are just some of the most common symptoms that are associated with toileting resistance: 

  • Difficulty with toilet training 

  • Resistance to participating in toilet training 

  • Anxiety related to using the toilet

  • Frequent accidents 

  • Withholding behaviors (holding urine or stool purposely) 

  • Toileting regression (child was toilet trained but began having accidents again) 

What does treatment for toileting resistance look like?

Prior to beginning treatment for toileting difficulties at the Center for CBT, we ask that your child has a medical appointment with a pediatrician to rule out any medical causes for the issue.  We then utilize Behavior Therapy, which is the most effective treatment for toileting resistance. Your clinician will begin by doing a functional analysis to understand the factors driving toileting resistance in your child.  This information will help us to create a customized plan tailored to your child’s specific needs. Throughout treatment, parents will learn and practice the tools they need to best support their child’s progress. 

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