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Beware of Binky? Baby Items to Use with Caution (page 2)

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Updated on Jun 12, 2012

Baby Bottles

  • Kids falling while holding a bottle made up 66 percent of the E.R. incidents in the study. Balance is crucial for tiny legs to get the hang of toddling, running, and even pulling up to a standing position. Carrying or sucking on a bottle simultaneously is risky for little ones on the go, so always take away a bottle at the first sign that your baby's starting to get active.
  • AAP guidelines warn against "propping" bottles up during mealtime. When bottles aren't held, you and your baby have no control over the amount of formula or milk that's flowing. If your child ingests too much fluid too quickly, it can accumulate in her ear canal and cause infection; in the worst case scenario, asphyxiation can occur. Hold the bottle and watch your baby carefully as she feeds. Remove the bottle when she's full and don't leave it in the crib—never allow her to jump up and take off with her "ba-ba" in hand.

Sippy Cups

  • Both the AAP and the American Dental Association recommend weaning children off sippy cups by their first birthday, as research found that sippy cup injuries actually increased with age. Just as with bottles, tumbles accounted for most serious sippy cup accidents (86.1 percent in this study). Many parents allow their kid to walk and play with the cups as they get older—mistakenly assuming that they're safer somehow. Instead, consider transitioning your baby straight to a "big kid" cup from the bottle, and only give her beverages while she's sitting down.

Bottles, binkies and baby cups provide comfort for your baby, making it easy to become so accustomed to them that you let your guard down and fail to recognize the possibility of harm. One of the authors of this latest study, Dr. Lara McKenzie, writes that, "Educating parents and caregivers about the importance of transitioning their children away from these products at the ages recommended by the AAP and AAPD could prevent up to 80 percent of the injuries related to baby bottles, pacifiers and sippy cups."

Awareness is the key to safety here. By understanding and remaining vigilant about age appropriate guidelines and expert recommendations for these objects, you'll ensure your baby stays comfortable and safe. Win-win!

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