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Sippy Cups Can Lead to Speech Issues

Sippy cups save mothers from mopping up spills and allow tots a bit of freedom to roam with their beverages, but now the convenient cups have been linked to speech delays in children.

According to a recent WebMD article, sucking on the sipper's stiff spouts may lead to lisps and slurred speech. To see how to solve the problem,

. Sandra Holtzman, a speech pathologist said:

If a child goes from the breast or the bottle to a sippy cup, they tend to drink it as if it were a bottle. They lie back or tip their neck in the usual manner, so it's almost like drinking a bottle. They have a hard object or spout with various shapes depending on the type of cup, and their bodies are tipped back. This hard object or spout misplaces the tongue and pushes the teeth out as the thumb can.

For parents looking for a solution, experts suggest switching out sippy cups with those with straws.

Join The Conversation
cagey333 cagey333 9 years
Dreamjen has a great comment regarding this. For the record, my son refused to use a sippy cup. We went straight to strawed cups. I would also like to point out that picture used for this article is actually a strawed cup, not a sippy cup. That may be misleading because straws are not an issue where spouts on actual sippy cups are. Finally, it should also be mentioned that another concern with sippy cups is that liquid is directed to the back of the front teeth, which can lead to a greater chance of tooth decay. Dentists have a huge concern for sippy cups.
dreamnjen dreamnjen 9 years
I should point out first that this is a bad synopsis of the WebMD article because it doesn't point out that the article emphasizes that tongue placement is the culprit here. As a Behavioral Therapist, who works closely with Speech pathologists, I see this problem increasing in our schools. However, sippy cup usage, pacifiers, and thumb sucking doesn't really become a problem until closer to 3 years old when a child's speech really begins to develop. In consulting with parents we often find that these children used sippy cups, pacifiers, etc. for much longer than is appropriate; with some still engaging in the behavior well into their school years. If you look closely, when your child uses a regular cup their tongue is tucked in behind their teeth, but with a sippy cup it protrudes out, sometimes past the bottom lip. The tongue then becomes trained incorrectly making it difficult to articulate many phonetic sounds.
kindo1313 kindo1313 9 years
I actually know quite a few people who never used a sippy cup with their kids. And this isn't new information about causing speech problems. I've been hearing it for years. We have a couple of sippy cups, but I actually prefer the cups with straws as they are less likely to leak.
kerneschick2005 kerneschick2005 9 years
I wonder how these would size-up....
Novaraen Novaraen 9 years
WHAT??? I dont think so. This story cannot be true. My kids have been using sippy cups since they were about 9 months or so. No language problems whatsoever! I switched them from bottles when they began biting through the nipples. Once they bit through the last nipple...i said "thats it" and they have been using the sippies every since. Now they are in training to use regular cups...but even at almost 3 years old this can be messy. So i suggest to hlm584 to just continue to try a sippy out on your little one. Make sure to get the age-appropriate cup so that the little spout isnt too big.
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
I don't think I've ever even met a child who has never ever used a sippy cup. :? This seems like an awfully odd conclusion.
Kristinh1012 Kristinh1012 9 years
hlm584, honestly things like this I think you have to go by your own judgement. I think this is a little extreme. I'm sure there are VERY few people who have EVER gone right to a regular cup and skipped the whole sippy cup thing. If you do decided to take that route..........Good luck! Talk to your doctor if you are really concerned before you make a very messy and what sounds to me ridiculous choice.
Kristinh1012 Kristinh1012 9 years
This just sounds insane to me. I just don't see it. When my daughters had their sip cups they didn't lay down with them like they did a bottle. unless a child has the cup in it's mouth for a very unreasonable amount of time during a day I can't see how this would actually cause a problem. Kids that suck their thumbs tend to have their thumbs in their mouth on an almost constant basis (I was a thumb sucker).
hlm584 hlm584 9 years
Makes sense...and so part of my life right now. I have tried a sippy cup with my 9-month old daughter but she seems to have trouble adjusting to the spout. I haven't pushed the idea as I was giving her time to adjust but now am questioning whether or not I should just switch to a regular cup instead. Any advice from fellow Sugar moms?
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