Whistling could help babies learn to go to the bathroom on their own, a new study revealed. Researchers said that parents who whistle to their infants could even see their children get potty-trained before they are able to walk.
Researchers say that babies living in the west are potty trained later these days, and often need diapers even at the age of 3. However, after following Vietnamese families, researchers found that whistling to babies could get them out of their diapers even before they celebrate their first birthday.
Swedish researchers observed 47 Vietnamese babies and their mothers for two years to study their potty training procedure. Researchers said that in Vietnam potty training usually starts at birth and the need for diapers is usually eliminated by nine months of age. Potty training usually starts almost immediately after birth among Vietnamese families.
According to researcher Professor Anna-Lena Hellström, the technique for early potty training appears to be based on learning to be sensitive to when the baby needs to go to the bathroom. They found that once a mother notices that her baby is showing signs that they need to urinate, she would make a whistling sound.
"The woman then makes a special whistling sound to remind her baby," Hellström said in a news release. "The whistling method starts at birth and serves as an increasingly powerful means of communication as time goes on."
Researchers explained that the babies then learned to associate the whistling sound with urinating, and by the age of nine months they were able to control themselves.
The study found that women started noticing signs of progress by the time their babies are three months old. Researchers noted that by the time the baby turns nine-months-old they are able to use the potty on their own if they are reminded. What's more, children can generally take care of all their toileting needs by the age of two.
"Our studies also found that Vietnamese babies empty their bladders more effectively," Hellström says. "Thus, the evidence is that potty training in itself and not age is the factor that causes bladder control to develop."
Researchers said that many benefits come with being potty trained early. Not only does it save money that would have been spent on diapers and make the life of the parents easier, being potty trained early could also help babies control their bladder and help reduce the risk of urinary tract infections.