If there’s one thing I’ve learned as a parent, it’s that the small habits make a BIG difference.
Like teaching my two-year-old how to use a small dust pan to clean up her buffet of crumbs after breakfast. She hasn’t even finished her last bite of scrambled eggs before she’s asking me if it’s time to start cleaning up.
But the one habit that I wish I had known about with my first baby seven years ago?
Teaching her how to use an open cup the moment she could sit in a high chair.
I had about a dozen varieties of sippy cups, so you can imagine my horror as both a dentist and a mother when I realized these types of cups were responsible for creating such poor tongue posture in children that they could develop sleep and breathing problems that could last a lifetime.
*Cue sippy cups into the trash can.*
If you want to help your baby or toddler grow into their healthiest airway and facial structure, you’ll need to ditch the sippy cups and teach them to use a regular open cup as soon as possible. Let’s get into it right now.
(Photo from Amazon)
The Sippy Cup vs. Open Cup Dilemma
Sippy cups have long been the go-to choice for transitioning babies from the bottle. They offer convenience and minimize messes, making them an apparent win-win for parents. However, as our understanding of child development evolves, the advantages of open cups are becoming more apparent.
Why Open Cups Matter
- Oral Development: Sippy cups require a sucking motion, similar to that of a bottle. In contrast, open cups encourage babies to learn how to sip, which supports oral motor development. Sipping aids tongue and lip coordination, essential for speech and overall mouth function.
- Preventing Dental Issues: Sippy cups can lead to dental problems, especially if used for extended periods. They may contribute to issues like malocclusion (misaligned teeth), as they often require prolonged sucking, which can affect tooth and jaw development.
- Transition to Tableware: Using open cups from an early age helps children become more comfortable with regular tableware. This transition can be smoother and faster when kids are already accustomed to open cups.
- Independence and Confidence: Learning to drink from an open cup fosters independence. It’s a small but significant step for your child to master, and it can boost their confidence.
The ezpz Tiny Cup
So, why the ezpz Tiny Cup? Here’s what makes it the gold standard for first cups:
- Just the Right Size: The Tiny Cup is designed with little hands and mouths in mind. Its size is perfect for baby hands to grasp, encouraging self-feeding.
- Safe and Easy-to-Clean: It’s made from high-quality, food-grade silicone that’s safe for your baby. Plus, it’s easy to clean, a big plus for busy parents.
- Stability Matters: The Tiny Cup comes with a weighted base, making it more stable and less prone to tipping over, reducing messes during those early sipping attempts.
- Versatile: It can be used for liquids, smoothies, and even as a teething toy. It’s a multi-purpose tool for your child’s various stages of development.
The Bottom Line: The Investment in a Tiny Cup
Whenever I talk about this cute little cup on social media, I receive quite a few comments about the price of the cup. Yes, I know it seems silly to spent between $11-$18 on a cup for your baby or toddler. But the consequences of using a sippy cup will cost you sooooo much more.
Your child’s oral and airway development will influence their overall health for the rest of their lives. As a functional dentist, I’ve seen first hand the disastrous effects of sippy cups. Trust me- the consequences are very expensive to correct. Myofunctional therapy to fix the poor tongue posture caused by sippy cups will run in the hundreds, and orthodontics to correct vaulted palates and crowded teeth will run in the thousands.
So yes, this cup is worth every penny.
(PS– the links in this post are affiliate links, which means I get paid a small commission when you buy through the link. But as always, I only share the products I truly love and use!)