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How The Beaker Cup Might Be Causing Speech Problems

The ever popular beaker cup or sippy cup is not helping your child to learn drinking and eating. In fact, it might be hindering your child’s development.

This is the message from a speech therapist, Dr Katja Koski, who says using a beaker cup might even result in open bite (occlusion).

Using a beaker cup can also lead into speech impediments like lisp when s and z are hard to say, Katja says.

This is because the spout of the beaker misplaces the tongue and pushes the teeth forward or outward. The beaker also maintains the early suckling reflex that babies have and it doesn’t teach how to swallow.

Babies and adults swallow differently. When a child starts to eat solid foods he’s swallowing starts to develop. That’s why introducing solid food to a baby is also very much learning how to move the food with her tongue and swallow.

When a child drinks from a beaker she can’t push her tongue up and continues to drink like from a bottle or breast.

Using a beaker cup doesn’t automatically mean your child will have speech problems. But because there are other ways to drink, it makes sense to teach these to your child.

Good option is to learn to drink from a cup without the lid. I know. Spillage. That’s why another option is to use a straw cup. These cups have a nice silicone straw which is not too hard on your baby’s gums.

You can start using a straw cup at the same time when you start introducing solid foods. It will take a while for the baby to learn the skill but it’s well worth the effort.


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