Friday, August 28, 2009

Introducing straw cups and sippy cups to breastfed babies

Since I'm a SAHM, we never really had a need to introduce bottles to the Little Missy. We took a few bottles when I went to a wedding when she was 6 weeks old, but then by the next time we tried to offer one, she had decided she only liked her milk from the tap. I tried every bottle out there, but she was too smart for my tricks.

Around 4 months, I tried to introduce various sippy cups with a tiny bit of water so we wouldn't waste breast milk. says up to 2 oz. in a 24 hour period is fine for babies under 6 months learning to use sippies. She probably never drank more than 2 ml from most of the sippies we tried. She could use a Nuby sippy pretty well by 5 months though, if I held it for her, but it was kind of messy. (She didn't understand the concept of holding the cup up, since she had no experience with bottles.)

I thought she might do better with a straw cup, so we started teaching her how to use a straw. We first drizzled a little water from a regular straw into her mouth, by covering the other end with our finger. Then we made it progressively harder by not letting go as quickly, so she would have to suck a little to get a drink. After she got the hang of that, I introduced a straw cup around 6 months. We used the Rubbermaid Litterless Juice box, because it doesn't have a valve like the "baby" straw cups do, so it is very easy to drink from. It's also pretty small and easy to hold. I picked one up at the grocery store for less than $3 (it was located with other Rubbermaid food/drink containers). I would put water it in, help her get the straw into her mouth, and then squeeze it gently to squirt some water out, so she knew what it was. It was a little messy, because it comes out quickly, but she could hold it herself and drink pretty well. She loved it. She still wouldn't drink EBM from it, but at least I could send her to the church nursery with a drink.

Eventually, around 11 months, I wanted to get her on "regular" sippies, and we found that the small Take & Toss Little Learner cup was great for her. I could only find their bigger cups and small snack containers at the store, but the lids are interchangeable. The dents around the side of the little cups make them easy to hold, and also they are small enough that I can fill them to the top and the Little Missy barely has to tip them up to get a drink (and they aren't too heavy). She figured them out immediately. (And I used them for several months before I had to toss a few of the lids because the spouts cracked- they are very reusable.)

I have also heard great things about the TILTY cup, and think it looks like a great idea, but I didn't find out about them until recently, so we haven't actually tried one yet.

Now at 16 months, she is a pro and can drink out of any sippy or straw cup I give her. Our next goal is to get her drinking out of open cups, but that will have to be another post. Because now all she's been able to do is dump a cup of water on her head in the tub!

1 comment:

  1. Hey there, great post. I need to "copy" this blogging idea with my BF babies on what worked...or not for us! Are you on TNMC? I am following your blog and assuming...but your name is not on your profile and neither is your DD.