Babies overcome different milestones. As they grow and develop, they will perfect key motor skills, which will be a stepping stone to successful growth. They will learn to sit up, stand straight, rollover, etc. Holding a bottle is one of these milestones.
Many mothers are worried if their babies are on the right track to development. At the same time, they want their babies to have some independence by at least holding their own bottle. So, when can you have the luxury of feeding your baby while tackling other chores around the house? Here we have the answer to your question.
When Can I Expect My Baby To Hold a Bottle?
Every child is different. It takes babies 6 months to learn bottle holding. Of course, it can also happen later or much sooner. When it comes to developing fine motor skills and adequate strength, babies are usually 8 to 9 months old. They are more adept at holding objects and can guide them to their mouths. So, roughly 6 to 10 months would be the best estimate.
There are also cases when the baby transitions to using the bottle. But, it doesn’t want to hold it. They either lack the coordination or strength to take it. Plus, babies who love food tend to reach for the bottle much sooner than others. That’s because they have the will and inspiration to go for it.
When Should My Baby Stop Using the Bottle?
By the time your child turns 1, you should be weaning them off the bottle. You don’t want your little munchkin creating an unnecessary attachment. This takes a little bit of trial and error. But, once you get the bottle-feeding under control, your baby will show interest in holding their own food.
My Baby Can’t Hold A Bottle? Should I Be Worried?
Is your baby taking longer to master holding techniques? Don’t stress. Every baby grows at its own pace. Thus, encouraging independence can be a little tricky. What you can do is show them how it’s done. After all, your helping hand will give them a head start. For example:
- Buy a sippy cup that’s easy to hold. Like the one with handles.
- Take their hands gently and put them around the bottle, with yours on top. This guiding technique can also be used to teach the baby to take a sip.
- Spend time with your little one on building strength. Use structured activities and hands-on play for best results.
- Give your baby teethers and show them how to move the object towards the mouth.
What About Precautions?
When teaching your baby to hold a bottle, don’t leave them unattended in the crib. They can drink and doze off while the sippy cup is still in their mouth. Also, the bottle is for feeding, not to help them fall asleep. So, teach them healthy practices that can be useful in the long run.
Don’t compare yourself to other baby mommas. What works for other babies may not work for you. In general, your baby can start holding their sippy cup once they are between 6 to 10 months old. If you are worried about their development, contact a specialist. They can let you in on some invaluable tips.