If you are like most moms who use a bottle to supplement feeding, you will find that babies and toddlers take extreme comfort in their bottles. However, there comes a time when its unsightly for a child to still be using a bottle- but how to make them give it up? It will be a struggle, so brace yourselves.
- Talk to the child. Explain that he is growing up and bottles are for babies.
- Set a time: Tell the child that in two weeks, the bottle will go and a new sippy cup will take its place. Counting down prepares the child mentally for what is coming. You can also agree with your child to use the bottle only at night for the first couple of weeks. This is the hardest feeding time to shake because they are used to falling asleep with the bottle. Remember that falling asleep with the nipple in their mouths ( especially with formula milk) is bad for their teeth and gums. You need to wash this out with water.
- Sippy cup shopping – Make the transition a fun one by making them choose their own cups.
- Out of sight: When D-Day approaches, put the bottles out of sight. If the child sees the bottle he is more likely to throw a fit to try and get it.
- Stick to your guns: When the its time for the night feeding to be switched permanently to the sippy cup, your child will be miserable. You will feel like a bad parent… but stay strong. Develop a new bedtime routine of having milk in a cup, then brushing their teeth with them and then reading a story. Heck, let them watch a little TV to distract them for a little while if you have to.