10 answers

Baby Can't Suck Bottle

My 4 month old can't figure out how to suck out of the bottle. She plays with it and does this weird thing w/her tongue. We are all frustrated. Anybody else experience this?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Maybe her frenula (the little thingie under her tongue that holds her tongue down)is too short & she can't physically suck right. My nephew had a cleft palate that was so small & so far back in his mouth that they didn't catch it for his first few weeks. He had a funky bottle (don't remember the name but probably googling cleft palate bottle would bring it up) & that's the only way he was able to suck.

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She may have an issue with her tongue placement which can lead to further problems down the road, including speech. I had a problem breast feeding because my son couldn't figure out his tongue placement. We consulted an occupation consultant who also happened to be a lactation consultant. Best thing I ever did - we had the problem mostly fixed inside of a weekend with just one little exercise! Then we just built upon that huge jump start. Good luck!

Hi K.,
I remember those days!! I waited until my daughter was 4 months old to introduce her to a bottle because I was very concerned about her nursing well. However, subsequently, she NEVER took to the bottle. I ended up nursing until she was 1. She was able to drink out of a straw and a cup at about 7 1/2 to 8 months. But she never would take a bottle. It seems like forever, but three or four months goes by really fast. You will make it.
Take care,
B.

Adding on to what Sunny said, my sister in law says teaching kids to drink from cups with no lids helps them develop their speech sooner/better. But I still give my kids sippy cups with straws during the day so that they can take them around the house or in the car. They tend to drink more water this way rather than if I only let them drink from an open cup in the kitchen.
Anyway, that wasn't your question! Yes, try different nipples, different formula, different people feeding the baby. Hopefully you will find something that works so that you can leave her with someone else occasionally. Good luck!

At that age you can start holding a cup for her. I've heard this is actually healthier, I'm not sure why.

A lot of 4 month olds have a strong preference for mom. It may be the nipple shape, or perhaps the environment. I usually start with the Dr. Brown's narrow, but there are many others to try if your baby doesn't like that shape. To encourage her to just *try* so you can evaluate the shape, you might try offering it in the tub. She'll be busy with all the other sensations and might give it a go. Offering it in the car would be very different, too! If she can figure it out once or twice, you'll be over the hump. Good luck!

try some different nipples.
My daughter is breastfed; it was my mom who got my daughter to take a bottle while we were on a date. She said that she wouldn't take it at first but then she dipped the nipple in my breast milk and she took it right away after that.

Maybe her frenula (the little thingie under her tongue that holds her tongue down)is too short & she can't physically suck right. My nephew had a cleft palate that was so small & so far back in his mouth that they didn't catch it for his first few weeks. He had a funky bottle (don't remember the name but probably googling cleft palate bottle would bring it up) & that's the only way he was able to suck.

Hi K. - you probably just dont have the "right" nipple. My first loved the clear silicon Avent nipples and hated the latex Playtex nipples. My second was completely opposite. After trying all kinds of nipples, in desperation I pulled out the 4yr old playtex nurser and he latched on like a champ.

You might just have to buy several kinds and see what she likes the best.

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