Watch out for this potty training accident you aren't prepared for

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"I rang the fire brigade, and even they laughed. I don't think they'd seen something like this before".
"I rang the fire brigade, and even they laughed. I don't think they'd seen something like this before".

It's time to add getting stuck in a toilet seat to the list of what to expect when potty training your toddler.

It's surprisingly common with headlines like "Toddler rescued by firefighters after toilet training seat 'stuck around his head'" making the news. 

At first glance, it sounds hilarious, but according to UK mom Jodie Soley, it can be overwhelming especially when you need to call in professionals for help. 

The mom says that it all began when her two-year son Edward started dancing with the training seat around his head and after slipping down to his neck, the seat wouldn't budge. 

"I rang the fire brigade, and even they laughed. I don't think they'd seen something like this before," Soley said in an interview

"Not your 'bog' standard rescue," the County Durham & Darlington Fire & Rescue Service commented via a Facebook post, sharing an image of the rescue in action. 

Also see: Medical alert dog offers lifeline for tot battling Type 1 Diabetes

boy stuck in potty training seat

US parents Jake and Abbie shared their son's toilet seat mishap via YouTube. Managing to free their two-year-old son Reuben themselves, the video shows just how intense it can be and the potential for even further injury. 

Also read: My child struggles with day-to-day tasks like brushing his teeth. Do they have a sensory disorder? 

Falling seats 

On the surface, toilet seat incidents involving toddlers don't sound all that serious, but according to one study, the dangers for toddlers in (potty) training are real. 

Pooling data on toilet seat-related injuries, the study found that 82% of these injuries happened to 2 to 3 year-old tots, identifying heavy wooden and ceramic seats as hazardous. 

"In all, 9011 crush injuries related to toilets or toilet seats were noted during the study period, all of which occurred in males and mechanism was described as accidental fall of toilet seat". 

Dr Benjamin Breyer, one of the study's authors, pegged the injury to poor motor skills in toddlers trying out their newfound independence when using the toilet. 

"It's a toddler basically potty training who doesn't have the most advanced motor skills, and they just don't have the reflexes to move fast enough," Dr Breyer said. 

And while this type of injury is still considered rare, "toilet seats were the most common product associated with penile injuries in children". 

Sit first, stand later 

To ensure your little guy is safe while potty training, Breyer suggests opting for a slow-close lid. 

US paediatrician Tom Seman suggests a sit first, stand later approach for little boys. 

"In the beginning, most male children are toilet trained by sitting on the toilet, not standing. After the child becomes proficient, they are then shown how to urinate while standing."

Dr Chris Galloway, an expert in emergency medicine, assures parents that often, the injury does not have a permanent impact but "can be really scary for both the patient and the parent."

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