When did your little ones first drink through a straw? - Mothering Forums
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Life with a Toddler > When did your little ones first drink through a straw?
christy005's Avatar christy005 01:41 AM 09-17-2010
I cannot remember when my oldest son was able to drink with one.
My DS is 17 months now and cannot use a straw at all, although we have tried. I am wondering if that is normal. We are also waiting on a speech evaluation, because he is saying maybe two words (mama and dada, and not very consistently), so I wonder if there is an issue with the muscles or something that is affecting speech.

mel_mama's Avatar mel_mama 02:16 AM 09-17-2010
My son is 21 months and still can't seem to get the hang of it. However, he is advanced verbally and is speaking in sentences at this point (maybe 100 words or so?). So I'm not entirely convinced the two are connected...
sunflwrmoonbeam's Avatar sunflwrmoonbeam 02:24 AM 09-17-2010
My 14 month old has been able to use a straw for about a month. I don't let her often, because she'd rather play with the cup, but she's got the straw down fine.
Chamomile Girl's Avatar Chamomile Girl 02:27 AM 09-17-2010
My kid first used a straw at about 9 months old. We were amazed he figured it out, but he has consistantly been able to ever since. Not much in the way of words going on here so I'm not sure they are related either.
ellemenope's Avatar ellemenope 02:31 AM 09-17-2010
Is he not understanding how to suck, or is he sucking but just not hard enough to consistently get liquid up?

If he just doesn't seem to get it, I might suggest you try a really tiny thin straw first and then work towards those big fat ones they use for kids' cups. I have tried a few and they take a lot of suck power . If he has only tried those he just might not understand yet what he is supposed to do.

DD started using straw cups at 10 months. She didn't 'get' traditional sippy cups until months later.
Abraisme's Avatar Abraisme 02:35 AM 09-17-2010
My dd has been using a straw since 9-10mo, she's now 13mo and uses a straw type sippy cup all the time.
MamaPhD's Avatar MamaPhD 02:36 AM 09-17-2010
DD is 21 months and can use straw sippy cups or just a straw in a regular cup. She's been doing it for a while, so I'm guessing she started around ~16 months? Not sure about the speech thing...
mbm's Avatar mbm 02:50 AM 09-17-2010
DD's been using the straw sippy since about 12 months, and she could use regular straws at about 18 months.

My mom was amazed, and told me that her kids all had trouble with straws until we were FIVE.
limabean's Avatar limabean 02:57 AM 09-17-2010
We've always used sippies with straws instead of spouts, so our kids used them from maybe 9 months onward with no problems. We use the Thermos Foogo brand, though, which are easy to suck from. Some of the straw cups they sell are ridiculously hard to get liquid out of, even for me!
bender's Avatar bender 03:30 AM 09-17-2010
Mine started with a straw around 9 months or so, but then my parents used a sippy with him, so he got used to tipping a cup. Now, he tries to tilt the straw cup, but gets no liquid, and gets pissed off, so he refuses to use it. He will drink happily from my camelbak bite valve bottle though.
crunchy_mommy's Avatar crunchy_mommy 09:13 AM 09-17-2010
I don't exactly remember because we didn't do sippy cups & only used straws in restaurants but I want to say around a year old?

Have you tried this? Put the straw in the water, put your finger firmly on the top, and pull the straw out so the water stays in the straw, and then let him drink from the bottom. That's what we did with DS the first time or two & he got it right away.
EdnaMarie's Avatar EdnaMarie 09:42 AM 09-17-2010
My 17-month-old has been drinking from a straw for some time, but we taught her using the trick of getting the liquid up to the top of the straw for her and that's how she learned it. I'm not keen on straws for babies in theory (my older daughter didn't have one until much later) but... baby has to be like big sister.

As for your son's speech, two words at 17 months is still well within normal range. Keep in mind that as a first-time parent you may be missing a lot of words (I know I did).
Latte Mama's Avatar Latte Mama 10:28 AM 09-17-2010
Around 8-9 months. My DS wouldn't use regular sippies because he didn't want to turn them up so we got the straw cups. But he also started stealing sips from my water mug around that time which has a big straw.
tabrizia's Avatar tabrizia 10:31 AM 09-17-2010
DD has been using a straw since 6 or 7 months old, we started her with a straw sippy rather then a regular sippy cup because DS didn't get the hang of regular sippies for ages and ended up mainly using straw sippies, so that was what we had.
cristeen's Avatar cristeen 01:03 PM 09-17-2010
Since about 6 mos. But he was supplemented at the breast from early on, so he understood the concept well. But at a year he still cant figure out the ones w a bite valve, and he cant be trusted not to flip up a regular one that will spill, so we still use bottles.
justKate's Avatar justKate 01:18 PM 09-17-2010
At 19 mos., DD still doesn't really "get" straws. We got her to drink out of one of those hard plastic ones at Sea World about a month ago because we had one of those slurpees and it was hella hot. (I know, way to go mom, giving the 18 mo a slurpee.) We've tried it with regular straws since then and she still doesn't get it.

So the straw thing wouldn't bother me. As far as words go, two is not a lot, but don't think you should stress too much yet. Does he use any signs or have sounds that mean things, even if they aren't words? I hope the speech eval brings you some comfort.
Everrgreen's Avatar Everrgreen 02:22 PM 09-17-2010
I don't think it's related to speech. My DS is almost 20 months has been using a straw forever (maybe since around 12 months) and is still non-verbal
Kim Allen's Avatar Kim Allen 02:30 PM 09-17-2010
both of mine started drinking out of a straw at 8-9 months. I honestly was a lil shocked the picked up on it so early.
physmom's Avatar physmom 02:44 PM 09-17-2010
I don't know... 8-9 months? A friend of hers had one and she used it immediately. We never had tried before that. Then again sippy cups baffle her even today but she can use a normal cup just fine?

Is it because he doesn't seem to like it or he doesn't have the muscle strength? It might just be a preference issue.
mckittre's Avatar mckittre 03:40 PM 09-17-2010
I don't think it's related to speech. My 19 month old can't use a straw at all (takes it out of the cup and tries to lick off the bottom), but speaks in 6+ word sentences.
Angelorum's Avatar Angelorum 04:44 PM 09-17-2010
The waiter brought us a straw cup at a restaurant when ds was 8 or 9 months. We gave it to him to play with, and after about 1/2 an hour, he had figured out how to drink from it! I was pretty surprised. He has no idea how to use a regular sippy, though he'll tip an open cup and get a face full of water. So, it's all straws around here.
pbjmama's Avatar pbjmama 04:50 PM 09-17-2010
Both of my kids were drinking from a straw at 8...maybe 9 months. DS had speech and language problems and DD has no speech/language problems. FWIW, 2 words at 17 months is well with in the normal limits.
thehighernest's Avatar thehighernest 08:55 PM 09-17-2010
Around 5-6 months when we started solids. Don't ask me how he did it, but my husband sat with him one night "showing" him and when I got back from work DS could do it. On the other hand, he's 18 months old and does not get at all that other cups require tipping back, so we're working on that now that we're trying to move to open cups.
Tiana's Avatar Tiana 10:03 PM 09-17-2010
As others have said, two words at 17 months is perfectly normal, plus there may be other words that you are missing.

I don't think straw use is related to speech, though. My daughter was the most verbal toddler I've ever met (talking as well as some of the 4 year olds in her kindergarten class at two), but couldn't figure out straws until sometime after 2. I can't remember exactly when, but sometime between 2 and 2.5.

My son is 14 months old. He's fairly verbal, but no where near as verbal as my daughter was at the same age. He's been able to use a straw since he was about 12.5 months, which was pretty much the first time he was offered one to try.
JBaxter's Avatar JBaxter 11:33 PM 09-17-2010
Jack had probably 30 words and has been drinking out of a straw since 7 or 8 months old.
BeagleMommy's Avatar BeagleMommy 11:45 PM 09-17-2010
DD was very advanced verbally (and still is) and didn't learn to use a straw at all until three. She tried every time we went to a restaurant, but never could get it. She still chews on the straw enough that she can only get about half the drink out before the straw is destroyed.
IngaAnne's Avatar IngaAnne 12:17 AM 09-18-2010
I first gave my son a smoothie in a cup with a regular straw at 13m. He figured it out on the first try (I guess he really wanted that smoothie). The Thermos Foogo was another one he picked up right away. It took a while longer for him to figure out those spill proof straws. They just take too much effort for him to bother. My son's language skills are probably on the lowish end of normal.
petitchou's Avatar petitchou 12:36 AM 09-18-2010
Both boys started at 7-8 months. Ds1 could never figure out the sippy cup so we tried a straw and he took to it immediately. His first word was at 19 months and it wasn't until much later that his speech really took off. (He's almost 4 and sometimes I wish he was a little less verbal now )

I think it's important to consider whether he is trying to communicate in other ways as well - signing, pointing, grunting, etc.
redvlagrl's Avatar redvlagrl 12:27 PM 09-18-2010
DD learned to use one at about 14 mths when we were on a road trip. She still doesn't get that you don't tip the cup though (23 mths)
dizzysmom's Avatar dizzysmom 12:48 PM 09-18-2010
DD has been able to use a straw since about 11 months, and she prefers to use the straw-type sippy cups. She went out to breakfast with my mom one day and we forgot to send her with a sippy for her juice, but DD came back having learned to use the straw.
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