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Why a Straw Cup is Better than a Sippy Cup

Despite what’s advertised to us the second we have a baby, we want to avoid giving our kid the traditional “sippy cup” as much as we can. We know this sounds wild – that sippy cup almost feels like a rite of passage into toddlerhood! – but hard spout sippy cups and transitional nipples have been shown to inhibit proper muscle development in the mouth which can affect speech development and feeding.

Why a Straw Cup is Better than a Sippy Cup

Despite what’s advertised to us the second we have a baby, we want to avoid giving our kid the traditional “sippy cup” as much as we can. We know this sounds wild – that sippy cup almost feels like a rite of passage into toddlerhood! – but hard spout sippy cups and transitional nipples have been shown to inhibit proper muscle development in the mouth which can affect speech development and feeding. 

We know the spill-proof feature is a huge draw, but even the most popular cups, like the Munchkin 360, can affect speech development. So, we recommend swapping out a sippy cup for cup drinking with an open-lid or straw cup right when your baby is starting solids. Open-lid and straw cup drinking is so important for your baby and kid, so just stick with those! There are also so many convenient straw cups out there that make straw drinking leak resistant and convenient on-the-go!

We know what you’re thinking: can my baby or toddler actually go straight to an open-lid or straw cup after being only on the bottle or breast? Yes! 

We know it sounds risky – and like a total mess! – but babies and toddlers will learn how to close their lips on an open-lid and straw cup with some practice. This helps with oral-motor development in the long run and gives them lots of practice drinking from a cup, which prepares them to wean from the bottle and/or breast once they’re ready. 

In our article, Breaking Down: Cups, we go over starting with an open-lid cup and then transitioning to a straw cup. You can find all of our favorite cups here!

Remember, these suggestions are for typically developing kids: some kids will need alternative cups as part of feeding therapy. Every kid and situation is different!

And are you ready to start your little one on solids? Our Feeding Your Baby Solids Course will help you thrive when it comes to feeding your baby and soon-to-be toddler. Through a series of short videos, we give you ALL the practical information you need to raise a non-picky, independent eater. You’ll leave the course with easy-to-use info about cup drinking and much, much more. For babies 3+ months.