Water for Little Ones

Water for Little Ones

Although there are many opinions on water consumptions for infant's,  babies and toddlers. Most medical institutions agree that water should not be offered before 6 months of age. Too much water can displace valuable nutrition from formula or breast milk and can imbalance an little ones electrolytes. Furthermore, most health care professionals agree that water isn't necessary for the first year of life  as breast milk and formula are comprised mostly of water.

When water is introduced,, it should only be offered in a open cup or straw cup(similar to b.box sippy cup) but not in a standard milk bottle. Have a water bottle yourself? it'd fine to offer baby sips from time to time. just keep tabs on how much your little one is consuming before 12 months of age, when water intake needs to be more carefully watched.


When can little ones drink water?

Water may be introduced in small amounts after 6 months of age. With Better Health Victoria suggesting that little ones can have up to 0.6 litres as fluids up until the age for 12 months. But that number should start lower and slowly growing over time. Water is optional before 12 months of age if still on formula or breast milk.


How should water be offered?

Offer water in a open cup or straw cup(similar to b.box sippy cup) to help baby develop cup drinking skills.

Believe it or not, water is actually one of the hardest liquids to learn how to drink. Water is thin and flows quickly, which requires the tongue and swallow muscles to work very fast. Don't be worried if your little one coughs when first learning to drink water. The oral skills required to drink from a cup or straw are very different than the movements required for a bottle or breast feeding.

Often, a little one coughs and sputters when the liquid is not well-contained in the mouth. As little ones skills improve with cup or straw drinking, this coughing and sputtering should subside. If your little one continues to cough with water drinking after ample practice time(a few months), speak with your doctor.

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1 comment
  • Amazingly, my toddler learned to drink water from a straw the first time I showed him by squeezing water through it. He quickly learned that straw gives him water and his first attemp was a success! and he likes his water ever since. 😄

    Tess Castillo on

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