Raising a Diaper-Free Babyby Julie Chaumont
published April 12, 2012
All about the Elimination Communication method
Having a baby doesn’t mean you have to be knee-deep in dirty diapers! By practicing the natural infant hygiene method—also known as Elimination Communication—you can say bye-bye to diapers... and everything that comes along with them!
Where does it come from?
Mother of four, Canadian Ingrid Bauer was the one who introduced the Elimination Communication method to the Western world. Author of the reference book, Diaper Free! The Gentle Wisdom of Natural Infant Hygiene, she says that babies can communicate their need to eliminate waste from birth. Thus, by being attentive, it’s possible to keep your baby clean, dry and happy, all without wearing diapers.
Bauer doesn’t claim to have invented this practice. It was actually by observing mothers in India and Africa that she developed the basic principles of this communication method, which is now gaining more and more adepts in North America and Europe.
How does it work?
By placing her baby (sans diaper) on a blanket, over time, mommy can observe the cues baby makes before needing to go, such as arching their back, grunting, etc. Mom can then take baby to do their business in the potty, in the sink, or elsewhere. Parents can then associate a sound or word to the moment baby needs to go. Usually, the word “poo poo” is used for needing to defecate, and a hissing sound to prompt baby to urinate.
Mommy also has to integrate visits to the bathroom to baby’s daily routine, much like feeding time and nap time. For example, a baby generally has to eliminate waste a short time after being fed. With time, a mother can familiarize herself with her child’s rhythm and can anticipate his or her need to go potty.
It’s all about communication
It’s important to note that Elimination Communication isn’t necessarily a method of toilet training, but rather a means of communicating with one’s baby, a way to build trust and ties that bond. Of course, accidents will happen, but as most adepts of this practice say: whether cleaning a baby’s bum or the floor, it’s pretty much the same thing!
Do you and your baby practice Elimination Communication? Share your experience with us in the Comments section below!
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