It's time to get your little one onto using a cup! Offering water during mealtimes is a great way to avoid indigestion or, worse, constipation. If your baby can confidently handle a straw, we recommend the B.Box sippy cup. This style of cup is great to travel with because the unique two-way valve straw ensures it is fully leak-proof and means you won't end up with half of it in your bag. If your baby isn't quite up to using a straw, then a soft spout sippy cup might be a better place to start, Nuk and Dr Brown's offer a fun range of these styles.
Between 18 months and two years, it's time to carefully wean your little one off the baby bottle and introduce a sippy cup. It's common for babies to be attached to their bottles— it reminds them of sustenance and their much-adored mother, so it's no wonder!
Here are some tips to help make the weaning process easier:
- Make sure your baby only uses the bottle when they drink milk—this stops them from carrying it around unnecessarily and drinking out of it whenever they please. By doing this, you'll find you've already been able to cut down the daily bottle usage significantly.
- Teach your baby to use a sippy cup at mealtimes—this makes the whole ordeal less of a shock and means they're more likely to take it on.
- Start weaning them off the bottle and onto the cup at lunchtime or in the afternoon. If you try to do so at dinner time or close to bedtime, you're more likely to have trouble with your child being fussy and tired, which can make the whole process more difficult.
It will take some getting used to, but weaning your baby off a bottle doesn't have to be problematic.
One way to make the process more enjoyable is to get a colourful cup. Consider even letting your little one choose the colour or design, and you might find they are more open to using it at home.