Whether you use bottles for feeding milk to your baby or juice, water etc., the struggle of getting rid of it is real! You’d be surprised to know that according to American Academy of Pediatrics, most babies are ready to start drinking from a sippy cup between 6 and 9 months. And, by the time they are a year old, they should have completely stopped bottle feeding. So to help you wean your precious from the bottle (that you may have been struggling with too), here are a few tips to stop bottle feeding.
1Don’t rush the process
In a number of articles previously written, we always stress the fact that when it comes to babies, you should never rush anything, be it weaning from breastmilk or getting rid of the scaly patches on head etc. Now say, your baby takes 5 bottles in a day, and the next day you completely eliminate them altogether. This won’t work in a number of ways. One, your baby will be confused and cranky. Two, he needs time to develop a habit of drinking from a cup. So, gradually eliminate the bottles, not all at a time.
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2Positive reinforcement works wonders
Believe it or not, but positive words spoken from your mouth help the child in this transition. Give positive reinforcement to your child whenever he even makes an effort of drinking from a sippy cup. Even If he doesn’t finish the milk and ends up taking the bottle, just praise him for the effort. It goes a long way.
3Keep bottles away from baby’s sight
Have you ever heard of the saying ‘Out of sight, out of mind’? Well, it works in this case too. Keep the bottles away from the baby, at a place where he can’t see them or access them. That way it will be easier for him to keep away and not want them. But in case he still demands it, try offering him milk in a cup. He may get cranky or upset but time will sort it all out.
4Making drinking from a cup fun for your child
Try and introduce sippy cups in a fun and interactive way. Get attractive cups for your baby, ones which will make him want to use them.
Don’t just give him milk in those cups, give him all forms of liquid, from juice, water and anything else you make.
Also, every child loves drinking from a straw. So give it to him! Anything that ignites the curiosity of a child will work in this transition.
5Don’t sweat the small stuff
Weaning a baby from the bottle can be a long process for some parents. Whatever be the case with you, just don’t sweat it! Give yourself and your baby a break in between if it takes too long. For a lot of kids, it will happen when it has to happen!
If you continue to let your child use the bottle out of convenience, comfort or whatever reason, it will make the weaning all the more difficult for both you and the baby. So it is better that once your child turns a year old, start the weaning process slowly. Because let’s face it, this has to be done sooner or later, so why not now!
When did your little one wean from the baby bottle? Was it easy for you or you had to take the pains? Share your experience with our readers…