Introducing a cup

From around six months you need to be encouraging your baby to use a cup to drink water from.

You can buy cups with special valves to sip from so it’s not a huge transition from your baby’s bottle. The Heinz Baby Basics range has some good options, including a trainer cup that comes with different interchangeable options to help them progress through the different stages of learning.

If you can choose an open or a free-flow cup without a valve (like the final stage of the trainer cup) that’s even better. This will help your baby learn to sip properly, and it’s better for their teeth.

Introducing a Cup

Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Give your baby sips of water from a cup with their meals, as well as between meals.
  • If you want to you can start to offer expressed beastmilk or formula in a cup rather than a bottle. Start by replacing one bottle of milk with one cup of milk a day and build up from there.
  • Keep at it! Getting them to use a cup every day is the key.
  • Aim to have your baby off their bottle and using a cup by their first birthday.

A few benefits of using a cup are:

  • Bottles over 12 months are not a good habit - babies and toddlers who are allowed to sip milk out of a bottle all day are much more likely to get tooth decay.
  • Your baby is likely to drink less milk from a cup therefore encouraging more of an appetite for food, which is good because food is becoming a more important part of their diet.
  • Using a cup can help improve your baby’s hand-eye coordination.
  • Cups are the great time saver, they’re much quicker and easier to clean than bottles.

Watch our Baby Feeding Tips video for more tips.

The materials published on this website are of a general nature and have been provided for informational purposes only. Always consult your medical practitioner or a qualified health provider for any further advice in relation to the topics discussed.

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