With each passing day, as your baby grows, you will need to implement changes to every aspect of his life from food to his clothing and other requirements. Many toddlers become very attached to their bottles as they tend to view it as a source of nourishment and also comfort and security.
However, if it’s time to introduce solid foods to your baby’s diet, you will now need to make changes to start weaning your baby from the bottle. Regardless of what reason your baby is attached to the bottle, it should be done at the right time, using the right tactic. In this article, we’ve explained all the basic aspects of how and when to stop bottle feeding for your little one.
[ Read: Weaning Foods ]
When To Stop Bottle Feeding Toddler?
Around the end of the first year, you can start to try stop bottle feeding your toddler and check if he’s comfortable drinking milk from a small cup. While this transition tends to be easy and natural for some toddlers, who quickly start drinking f
Generally, after 10-12 months of age, the baby is able to hold the head up and drink from a cup. This is something younger babies can’t do, so it is not recommended to try this if your baby is under a year old. A lot of babies tend to become accustomed to the bottle because the bottle’s nipple mimics the feel of their mother’s nipple.
Why To Stop Bottle Feeding?
Apart from the obvious reason that you would want your toddler to leave his baby bottle now that he’s grown up, there are many other reasons why you should consider stopping bottle feeding in your toddler:
1. Obesity Risk: While both breast milk and formula milk are rich in nutrients, continuing to drink from the bottle can pose health risks for your baby, particularly raising the risk of obesity in later life.
2. Dental Problems: According to American Dental Association, sucking on the baby bottle, particularly during sleeping, is believed to contribute to tooth decay. Breast milk and formula milk contain certain sugars, which can coat your baby’s teeth and contribute to decay in the early age itself.
[ Read: Finger Foods For Kids ]
How To Stop Bottle Feeding For Toddlers?
- If your baby’s first birthday is very close, it is now time for you to make changes and stop bottle feeding right away. Here are a few simple tips to help you get started.
- Instead of suddenly stopping bottle feeding altogether, move gradually and introduce the cup at certain times during the day, instead of the bottle.
- If your toddler usually drinks three bottles every day, reduce it to 2 bottles and a couple of small cups. This will help your toddler get used to it better.
- Offer some encouragement and explanation wherever needed by your toddler. For instance, you can explain that he’s a big boy now, and he needs to learn to drink from a cup.
- Look for attractive and colourful cartoon style cups from the market, which will encourage your toddler to drink from the cup more often.
- Try to introduce the cup to your toddler during the night time just before sleeping. This is when your toddler usually tries to find comfort with the bottle. If he learns to drink from the cup that time, he’s more likely to drink from the cup during the day too.
- Make it a point to educate your toddler the importance of brushing teeth after drinking milk; this will help ensure his oral health.
These simple tips will surely help you get your toddler off his bottle feeding habits eventually. You could also take suggestions from a pediatrician or a doctor to understand your choices and how you can help your toddler start getting accustomed even without the bottle.
Have more tips on how to stop bottle feeding? Share them with other parents here.
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