Are they to old to be drinking milk from their bottle

Sarina - posted on 03/20/2009 ( 12 moms have responded )

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my two son's aged 4 and 5 still have their milk in a bottle this is the only way that they will drink it ,they drink water from a cup but not milk i dont have a problem with it but other people do, i still want them to have milk ,does it really matter that it is in a bottle?

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Bobbie - posted on 03/20/2009

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I am a pediatric nurse and I can give you some information to help you and your children. First off, you have to understand that you are the parent and it is your job to make good and positive decisions on behalf of your children. You can't let them decide "if or how" they will drink their milk. They don't have to ability of skill to reason what is or is not good for them. That is the parents responsibility.The answer is very simple, but takes alot of work and tough love on YOUR part. Believe me, you will be a better parent and feel better about yourself in the end, and not only that, but your children will feel as if they have accomplished something too. You explain to them that starting tomorrow there will be no more bottles for their milk. From now on they will get their milk from a cup or glass because that is the way big boys drink. Then simply throw the bottles away, so you won't be tempted to give in again. Don't let them have anything other than water or milk to drink and make sure you give them a cup or glass. If they refuse (this is where the hard part comes in for you), simply walk away without any bargaining, or discussing it again. THEY WILL NOT DIE OF THIRST, NOR WILL THEY GET SICK, and don't let them make you feel guilty. You are not harming your children. When they realize that you mean what you say and that arguing or bargaining will not get them anywhere and that you mean what you say, they will drink from the cup. When they do, gently praise them. Tell them if they can continue this for 3 days that you will reward them. As a reward, take them out for ice cream, or buy a small toy, or buy them a new cup for their milk. This is a tried and true method that works and you will all feel better when the deed is done. Remember to be firm, stern, but kind to your children and don't let them guilt you into making decisions that you know aren't good for them. This is what ALL parents do at sometime in their lives. Remember, we weren't born automatically knowing how to be parents, we have to learn too. It is part of learning to be a good parent, and it sounds like you are a very good parent! Hang in there....

Holly - posted on 03/20/2009

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I certainly do not think it is that big of a deal for them to be drinking from a bottle. It will only damage thier teeth if they are falling asleep with the bottle. The only problem is related to a social norm. If they are developing normally otherwise and will drink other things from a cup I would not stress about it too much they will stop when they are ready. I have found with my children the bigger deal you make of it the more they will hold on to it. If you want to encourage transition, offer the milk in a cup if they refuse put it in a bottle without a big fuss. You can nonchalantly inform them or bring thier attention to the fact that most other children thier age are drinking from cups, but don't try to force them or make them feel bad about it. I think with this support thay will make the transition naturally

Molly - posted on 03/20/2009

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I can understand you just wanting what's best for your kids' nutrition but it is time to throw the bottle out. The sucking used to express the milk from the bottle applies pressure to the teeth that can make the teeth spread out, erupt incorrectly, and can really affect all the other teeth surrounding the front teeth. This can affect speech and their ability to bite together correctly with their front teeth which can affect the foods they can eat once their bite is formed.

Start giving them alternatives for milk. ie. cheese sticks, yogurt, sugar free ice cream. Or during the transition to a cup make them chocolate milk with sugar free chocolate. Good luck!!

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Jana - posted on 03/20/2009

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I have an idea that might help a transition from a bottle to not a bottle that might work.  My nieces and nephew used to drink out of plastic water bottles that had a "sport top" on it.  The kind that you push down and it closes and when you pull up the hole in the center opens so you can drink (I hope that makes since)  They would still be able to put the top in their mouth, like a bottle, but they wouldn't have to suck on it.  Then after a while, a week two weeks, you can take the top off and let them drink out of the water bottle.  It's a small opening, but not a bottle.  Then how to get them to drink out of a cup...I have no idea.  Maybe just picking a date on the calender and say "By May 15th, no more bottles, milk will be in a cup starting on the 16th!"  They are old enough to understand a count down, they will have their warning and when the day comes, get rid of the bottles and be done.  Other people have given examples of how to give them calcium, so they should get enough in other forms.  Good luck



P.S. I also agree with Bobbie's method :)

Pheonex - posted on 03/20/2009

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maybe use only sippy cups, or refillable water bottles,they will still have to suck on the bottle. You could try cool straws. Just have an honest talk with them and tell them that they are too old for bottles now and they have to drink their milk out of cups because they are big boys. It kind of sounds like it's part of a bedtime routine and you may have to find something to substitute it with like an extra story or cuddle time.

Emily - posted on 03/20/2009

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I was hoping they drank it some other time than before bed. That is when it is the worst because it creates pooling in the mouth. I would suggest you make a concious effort to get rid of that bottle. If they insist on a bottle brush and floss their teeth really well afterward. I would also second everything in Holly's post fir the same reasons she states. One bottle a day shouldn't mess with the allignment of teeth especially if they drink it pretty quickly, but allowing a child to drink from a bottle for prolonged amounts of time (as in years) can lead to accelerrated decay. If they don't like dairy they can get calcium from fortified OJ, green veggies or supplements until they decide that they will use a cup- and don't transition to a sippy cup -it just isn't developmentally appropriate for a four or five year old.

Terri - posted on 03/20/2009

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i don't know the "rules" but could you maybe switch from whole milk to 2% then to skim and then add a little water ...until it's the consistency of water and then try a cup?  not for a long time -i know children are usually supposed to have whole milk--but a short time to get him familiar with a different consistency of liquid coming from the bottle.  create a taste that is watered down and that he does not associate with the comfort and security that he does a bottle of milk.  or, maybe try it reverse --in the cup.  water, then one day add a little milk to the water, add a little more a few days later and so on until he' s drinking it?  yeah, that might work better!??!!?



 i have no experience with the milk part since my daughter is only 10mos old but she would not drink anything but water in her sippy cup and i added a little juice at a time to where now she will drink half and half. 

Tegan - posted on 03/20/2009

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My daugher is 20 months old and hasn't had a botlle for 2 months. She used to think the milk in her bottle was different to her cereal milk so we would show her when we poured it. We just kept telling her she is a big girl and that mum and dad drinks from a cup!

Sarina - posted on 03/20/2009

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Quoting Emily:

yes it does matter. A four and five year old should not still be on bottles. It can ruin their teeth. They can get dairy from other foods like yogurt, cheese etc. You need to throw away the bottle. If they like milk, they will eventually drink it from a cup. But seriously, a 5 year old should NOT be drinking from a bottle!



they only drink 1 bottle before bed, and they dont like cheese or yogurt ,what can i do to get them to drink 'milk' out of a cup?i was more looking for people that had a similar experience and that had delt with this

Charlene - posted on 03/20/2009

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Hi, my son is 21 months and I have the same problem, he will only drink milk from a bottle and not from anything else, I am hoping to get him off the bottle but it is very hard, I have really no idea how to do it, I've tryed but he refuses to drink it any other way and throws a fit when he can't have a bottle. I am trying to look on the bright side that he won't be drinking from a bottle for ever. If anyone can give some real advice on how to get rid of the bottle, as doing it cold turkey will not work and I do want him to get his fluids and not become consitpated due to not drinking enough. I do already know he can get the vitamins for other foods like cheese and yogurt, (he doesn't like cheese) So I'm in the same boat and hope he won't be still on it as long as 4-5 years!

Erica - posted on 03/20/2009

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I think it is unhealthy for them to drink milk out of a bottle. It could damage their teeth

Emily - posted on 03/20/2009

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yes it does matter. A four and five year old should not still be on bottles. It can ruin their teeth. They can get dairy from other foods like yogurt, cheese etc. You need to throw away the bottle. If they like milk, they will eventually drink it from a cup. But seriously, a 5 year old should NOT be drinking from a bottle!

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