19 answers

When to Break Toddler from Sippy Cup

I have a 3 year old daughter that still takes a sippy cup. I just wanted some thoughts on what age is a good age to start taking it away. She has to have it at night when she goes to bed which is a horrible habit but she also likes to have it with her when we do any kind of shopping or when we're riding in the car. So when do I cut her off and tell her she only gets a regular cup? She knows how to drink out of a regular cup but still prefers to have her sippy cup over anything else. Any thoughts are greatly appreciated! Thanks and Happy Valentines Day!!!

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Is there a reason she needs to stop drinking from a sippy cup? If not, why not wait until she doesn't care.

I have to Toss N Go cups for my 4 yr old son. When he wakes up in the morning I let him have a regular lid on his sippy, but after that he uses the ones with the straw. It works really great for us, he knows the only time he gets the regular lid is in the morning, then the rest of the day he uses the straw lid. Hope this helps!!

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When my son turned 3 I felt it was time to begin to break the habit. Don't take it away right away, kind of wean her off from it. Find other things that she's interested in to help get her mind off from it, or set up rewards. Say like if she likes barbie dolls everytime she goes shopping with you without the sippy cup then she'll get an accessorie or a new doll, and so forth. You don't want her to still feel that she needs it when it's time to start pre-k or kindergarten, that will only cause more issues. I hope those suggesstions will help.

I think it's just an attachment, if she can hold the cup and drink ok from a regular cup I would start gradually and remove it, but you will have to find something else perhaps a small stuffed puppy or something she might not want to hold the cup as much and them maybe eventually not at all, teach her only drink a meal time.

Hi! I have a toddler (she just turned 2) and about 6 months ago I bought her a Nalgene bottle (check your local camping store). I just now started giving her a "big girl cup" at the dinner table and around the house. She knows it has to stay in the kitchen (where there is no carpet). However, if we are in the car or out and about she either gets her Nalgene bottle or (even still) sometimes she gets her sippy cup. However, like a lot of people have said, I don't give her anything but water in her cup. If she wants O.J. for breakfast or milk for dinner than she gets it in her "big girl cup." I just make it sound really exciting to her!

Hi B.,

Well I have a 3 1/2 year old and a 14 month old and they are not limited to a certain amount of fluids a day but I also don't allow my 14 month old carry her cup around at all times of the day.

On the other part I am also a home child care provider and the fastest way to spread germs through a daycare is let them drink from the same cup so they only have their cups at the tables when it is breakfast, snack, lunch, snack or dinner time.
I also watch a 2 1/2 year old and my daughters cup and her cup (regualr cups) are left at the table and they have something in them but they can't take them away from the table.

My advice replace the sippy cups with regular cups but explain they have to stay at the table. Replace it during the day time and work up to the night time.
I did it cold turkey with my oldest and and my oldest daycare girl. She also drinks out of a regualar cup at home and if they go somewhere she takes on of those cups with a straw in them.

Hope this helps, W.

Are you very sure that you want to break her from the sippy cup? My daughter was capable of drinking from a regular cup, but we made her use the sippy cup when drinking anywhere besides the kitchen - so the car, living room, bedroom etc.

Just a thought though.. you could switch to "sports bottles".
That way she looks like a big kid or adult, we all drink from them! and just try making her use a regular cup for one meal a day. Pick your battles..
Also, depending upon what you put in the cup at bedtime is what makes it terrible. Water isn't as damaging as fruit juice.

Is there a reason she needs to stop drinking from a sippy cup? If not, why not wait until she doesn't care.

I have completely opposite advise than the previous one. My daughter is 4 and still has a sippy cup of juice available at all times. I drink continuously throughout the day, so why would I limit what she can drink. She can drink from a regular cup without any problems and does at meal time, but it is easier for me to give her a sippy through the day, to prevent spills. If you are worried about the attachment issue, you might just not let her have it at night time, or in the car. But I wouldn't limit her intake of fluid. Hope this helps.

If you fill it only with water, it won't hurt her to have it until whenever. She will eventually not want it anymore, anyway, so you don't need to make a big issue out of it. My daughter did not give them up until she was about 4 and it has done her no harm.
If your daughter is drinking something other than water from the cup, you should start replacing some of the juice or milk with water in small increments, until finally all she gets is water. Juice or milk from sippy cups can start to damage your childs teeth.

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