1- Make sure your child is ready.
2 - Have the right equipment for YOU and your KID.
3 - Decide what is going to work for your Child.
4 - Day vs Night Training and When to do it!
If you have decided to start please don't start during a major change. Moving, a new sibling, switching a major routine change, etc. Doing this causes stress and will actually set your child back in potty training. Stress can make it harder for a child to demonstrate a skill that they have yet to master. This is why most kids revert back or regress - it makes them remember a time when they were more comfortable.
Day vs. Night
I am an all or nothing girl. When we potty train we never go back to underwear. But - having said that kids can go ALL day without an accident waaaay before they are actually ready to get through the night. It is actually common and natural to wet the bed until a kid is 5 years old. It can be so frustrating I'm sure when you can have a kid last ALL day and then at night it becomes a huge problem.
If you are all ready experiencing this it could be for many reasons. Does your child sleep so soundly that they don't wake up? Does your child have nocturnal eneuresis?
Bed wetting is involuntary. It (from my research and training) is just a slight developmental delay, not anything emotional or physical, and only a small percentage of bed wetting cases are caused by specific medical problems. Did you know bed wetting is often associated with a family history of said condition? It is. So feel free to blame your spouses side. Haha. Just Kidding.
If you are just starting to seriously train bed wetting is something you need to think about. Most kids slowly stop wetting as part of their natural development. If your child wakes up wet in a diaper - do night training slowly. Get them trained through the day and then talk with them about getting rid of it at night. Try it for two weeks and if the number of dry nights decrease you know they are golden. If they increase return to the diaper and gradually make your way back to trying to go at night diaper free.
If you child is past 3.5 you could try intervening with the bed wetting alarm. I have never used it, but have heard great things about it. That is something you talk to the pedi about. You can also talk to the pedi about food allergies. Bed wetting can be linked to food allergies. Weird but sometimes true. I have also heard in my training that sometimes, in larger families the child wetting just needs a little extra special time. Take them to the bathroom 30 minutes before bed and then give them 20 minutes of undivided personal attention. Then take them again right before bed. Sometimes, that extra special time can reduce any stress or discomfort and relax them enough to let it all out.
In my own personal experiences I have just monitored when I notice my kid showing me the signs. I make sure they don't drink an hour before bedtime...at the beginning. Then I make sure they go potty right before bed and haven't had a problem. I have had one of my children who has been potty trained for awhile wet the bed, and it was their responsibility to take the sheets off and put them in the hamper. They had to change their jammies and be responsible about it. It wasn't deliberate and therefore they weren't "punished" but they needed to take care of it. In our house being in underwear is a big deal - it is when you start being held accountable and need to express what you want or need with your words. Just like using the words "I need to go potty" and then actually doing it. It is an expectation we have set and so we let them know part of potty training/being in underwear means growing up. Its time to end the crying and the fits and start getting ready for the real world/school.
If I had a child that had nightime issues I would explain to them that their muscles inside are still learning how to hold it. Its okay and if it happens we need to learn how to take care of it. No punishment is needed its just something that some kids have to deal with.
Ultimately you need to do what is going to work for you. You need to devote sometime to actually potty train and make sure you have what is going to work for you. For me the potty seat is better because I never have to transition to "big potties" and stores and other places are not scary since they only know how to use the "big ones."
Good Luck and as always I hope this helps! This as always is a post to help give you ideas or help with situations. Not a post telling you WHAT to do...because every kid is different! :)