Knowing which bottles and cups to use can be confusing. If this isn’t something that you already know, just wait until your first trip down the baby bottle and sippy cup aisle at the store. There are SO many choices. Did you know that which bottles and cups you choose can impact your baby’s oral development? That’s why it’s important to use dentist and doctor-approved bottles and cups.
The Basics of Bottles
It is very possible that your baby will have preferences when it comes to what kind of bottle they will accept. We recommend trying different styles to see which bottle they can most comfortably drink from. Bottle sampler packs are an excellent way to try different styles in a more affordable way. Bottles have different features to accommodate a baby’s specific needs. There are bottles that mimic the feel of breastfeeding, bottles that help combat colic and gas, and bottles that connect to a breast pump, and many, many more.
Bottles also come with different nipple flow options. Read the age recommendations to make sure that your baby can drink comfortably. Always sterilize all bottle parts and nipples before the first use and clean well between feeding to prevent the build-up of bacteria. We recommend that you start weaning your baby off bottles around their first birthday and that bottle use is completely finished by 18 months of age. This helps to prevent any impact on the development of their teeth and jaws.
Just like bottles, there are endless choices when it comes to choosing a cup for your little one. Sippy cups are usually the easiest way to transition a baby from the bottle and into the habit of using a cup. There are a variety of different styles for parents to choose from.
While they are the easiest way to transition, something very important to know about sippy cups is that they promote improper tongue placement. If your child uses sippy cups for a prolonged period of time, it can contribute to orthodontic, speech, and swallowing problems down the road. Switching to an open cup or a straw cup as soon as possible or, preferably, skipping the sippy cup all together, is the best way to prevent dental problems caused by cups.
Best Choices for Your Baby
When choosing a bottle or cup, take your child’s individual needs into consideration. Ensuring that they are able to drink safely and comfortably is always the most important thing. It’s also important to remember to keep their bottles or cups clean and regularly sanitized. If you ever have any questions about bottles or cups, we’re happy to check out what you’ve chosen. Feel free to bring them to your next appointment!