From Baby Bottle to Sippy Cup
Four Steps to Wean Your Baby Off the Bottle and Onto the Sippy Cup
By: Kelby Carr on: Sun 29 of Apr, 2007 [17:05 UTC] (6048 reads)
By around one year, babies should start the transition from baby bottle to sippy cup. Persuading your baby that it's time to leave the beloved bottle behind is usually a hard sell. There are steps you can take to make it easier to wean your baby off the bottle and onto the sippy cup. Here are five steps to sippy cup bliss. If you are a stay-at-home-mom who has nursed exclusively without using the bottle, you might even just introduce the sippy cup first and skip this weaning process entirely.
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Step 1 - Introduce the Sippy Cup Concept
First off, don't expect your baby to take right to the sippy cup. He or she most likely will not, and may even pitch the first couple cups across the room or scream after trying to take a sip. The skill and motion involved in a sippy cup vs. a baby bottle is completely different.
Make it tempting by using juice or something enticing, and once a day offer the sippy cup. Even if your baby rejects it entirely, continue this practice. Also look for sippy cups with soft tips instead of the hard ones. There is even a bottle that is a bit of a cross-breed which has a bottle nipple in the shape of a sippy cup spout. In fact, you might experiment with a couple different types of sippy cups. You don't need to push the issue at first. Just keep introducing the sippy cup daily.
Step 2 - Pick a Meal for the Sippy Cup
Next, decide that a certain meal a day will be served with a sippy cup, period. I wouldn't make this the meal before naptime or bedtime, since many babies are relaxed by the bottle sucking motions. You may still encounter some resistence, but you might even be surprised that your baby relaxes a little on the no-sippy-cup attitude.
If your baby drinks nothing from the sippy cup, wait a little bit before offering a bottle. Also try serving something fun like juice in the cup, and only milk in the bottle. If you feel comfortable giving it to your baby, you might even add a little chocolate syrup to motivate him or her to drink from the cup.
Step 3 - Press the Sippy Cup Issue
Begin serving the sippy cup first at all times (or all times except bedtime). Wait at least a couple minutes before replacing the sippy cup with a bottle. You might find your baby rejects the cup at first, then decides to have a little more in a couple minutes.
If you use this step for a week or so, you may even find you're almost home free on the bottle weaning. As your baby gets more accustomed to the cup and less attached to the bottle, your baby might just wean himself or herself off the bottle entirely.
Step 4 - Sippy Cup, Seriously
Now, it's time to wrap things up. You may even have a baby who continues to resist the sippy cup despite the previous steps. This is time to make it clear the days of bottles are gone.
Now, always present sippy cups. If your baby doesn't touch a cup, or barely drinks, offer only water in the bottle. It will take your baby no time at all to realize the bottle holds little value any more. Typically, by the time you've followed all the previous stages and come to this step, it won't take long before your baby embraces the cup. You might have a day or two of crankiness and resistence, but you should find success soon after.