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Pacifiers, bottles and sippy cups: Handle with care
May 14th, 2012
12:01 AM ET

Pacifiers, bottles and sippy cups: Handle with care

When babies are on the verge of walking, their parents know it's high time to baby-proof the house or apartment. But in all the preparations, they may forget to baby-proof their child as well - not by wrapping their little one in bubble-wrap, but by removing potentially dangerous objects from their child's mouth.  

Pacifiers, bottles and sippy cups serve an important purpose in calming and feeding a child but used improperly, they can also hurt a child.

In a study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics, researchers looked at data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System and reviewed 20 years of records of children age 3 and under, who were treated in emergency rooms across the country.

Between 1991 and 2010, they found 45,398 children were treated for injuries that involved pacifiers, bottles and sippy cups - that's about 2,270 cases per year.

In 86% of the cases, falling down contributed to the injury and two-thirds (65.8%) of the accidents involved bottles. One in five (19.9%) injured children had a pacifier in their mouth, and in 14.3% of the cases, a sippy cup was involved.

Some of the reported injuries included lacerations to the mouth, cuts and bruises to the lip or tongue and a variety of dental injuries.

"Teeth were either knocked out, chipped, pushed back up into the gums or knocked sideways," says Sarah Keim, lead study author and a researcher at the Center for Biobehavioral Health at The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

The study also found that one-year-old children were injured the most often.

Dr. Garry Gardner is a pediatrician in Chicago and chairs the Injury, Violence and Poison Control committee for the American Academy of Pediatrics. He's not surprised by the results of this study, especially that the majority of children injured were about 1-year-old.

"They toddle along and they're not very coordinated and it's amazing to see these kids trip over nothing - and they do it all the time."

If there's anything in a child's mouth, he says, it's going to cause an injury to the mouth or hurt a tooth.

Dr. Joanna Cohen, a pediatric emergency medicine specialist at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, says the study results are pretty consistent with what she sees in their emergency department.

"Usually these injuries seem to be minor lacerations in the face... or minor facial trauma."

Keim points out that fears of BPA and other chemicals in plastic bottles has led to a renaissance for glass bottles, which can add another layer to the types of injuries toddlers can sustain.

The researchers believe this is the first study to provide a nationwide picture about how many of these injuries occur. Keim points out that the data only reflects the number of children who were actually taken to an emergency room. It doesn't include any visits to the pediatrician, dentist or Dr. "Mom" or Dr. "Dad."

When should you take your child to the ER? Cohen says if the injury is "a deeper laceration that might require sutures, or an associated dental injury," or if the child hurts his or her head in any way.

It's impossible for any parent to keep an eye on their child every second of their waking hours.  But there are some simple steps that can help parents reduce the number of these types of injuries.

Keim, who is also a mom has this sage advice: "Getting your child in the habit of drinking while seated rather than walking around can help prevent some of the injuries."

She also refers to the AAP guidelines, which recommend transitioning your child from a bottle or sippy cup at about 12 months of age and teaching your child to drink from a cup without a lid.

The AAP already recommends weaning your baby off a pacifier in the second 6 months of life to reduce the risk of middle ear infections.

Keim and Gardner both make the point that if toddlers no longer use a pacifier by the time they start walking and running, a parent doesn't have to deal with taking it away from them to reduce the risk of injury.

Another benefit to not having your child attached to a bottle or sippy cup for long periods of time: You reduce your child's chance of getting cavities.

Gardner adds one more reminder: "Kids shouldn't run around with food in their mouth either."  That's just adding the risk of choking. He points parents to the AAP's website healthychildren.org for additional advice and parenting tips.


soundoff (134 Responses)
  1. AngelaD

    I grew up on glass bottles but we were so poor we had only two (grew up in former East Germany). There was no way our parents would let us walk around with them and possibly break them. Same with pacifiers. Amazing that the pure shortage of these things made us live healthier.....which was a good thing because we did not have a functioning medical or dental system either :-).

    May 14, 2012 at 07:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • XxMacleodxX

      if they can walk they do not need a pacifier or a bottle....their are soft tipped sippy cups but I still wouldn't let them run around with it ....before my son does anything he puts his down on a designated table (baby food and drink get everywhere...having it limits the destruction and prevents ignorant crap like the events described above)

      May 14, 2012 at 09:32 | Report abuse |
    • LaLa

      @ XxMacLeodxX : My children were both walking by 10 months, yet were not quite ready for food beyond the mushiest of cereals & could not yet use a sippy cup (daughter's hands were still too small to fit the handles). They needed mother's milk to remain healthy & I'm glad they could still get it via bottle. Neither has suffered for it. Every child is different.

      May 14, 2012 at 11:39 | Report abuse |
    • flashtrum

      Part of your story speaks to responsible parenting. That's the key with anything you give your child. Giving them a pacifier and allowing them to use it all day every day and all night every night isn't the most responsible way to go.

      May 14, 2012 at 13:42 | Report abuse |
    • A

      MacLeod, what LaLa said. I took my first steps at 7.5 months. That doesn't mean my bottle should have been taken away by then.

      May 14, 2012 at 14:45 | Report abuse |
  2. sbite

    So if the toddler falls and smashes his or her mouth without a bottle or binky there would be no damage?

    May 14, 2012 at 07:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark

      Well, "Teeth were either knocked out, chipped, pushed back up into the gums or knocked sideways..."

      So, beyond only a probable bump on the head, there would be no maxillofacial trauma. In other words, no damage.

      May 14, 2012 at 08:29 | Report abuse |
    • Karen

      My 2-year-old was running, tripped on a sidewalk crack, and fell on her face–the front baby tooth on one side got chipped and turned gray. The dentist said we'll have to wait and see if there was damage to the adult tooth behind it... so, yes, mouth damage can occur without anything in the mouth.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:20 | Report abuse |
    • justme

      my 18 month fell and broke his front tooth without anything in his mouth. The figure quoted in this article do not prove causation.

      May 14, 2012 at 11:07 | Report abuse |
    • John

      This is ridiculous! Enough studies already – these things are nothing more than money makers for those performing them – and I'll bet the ultimate conclusion of the study was that there needs to be more study on the subject.

      May 14, 2012 at 12:32 | Report abuse |
    • Sarah

      I don't think anyone's trying to say that injuries aren't possible if the child doesn't have anything in their mouth; just that it is more likely, and more likely to be serious if there is something hard hanging out of their mouth at the time. You know how they say don't run with scissors? Well, you can still get cut and hurt by falling without running with scissors, but it could be worse if you have a pair of sharp, pointy things in your hand. Kids are going to get hurt, it's just a fact of being clumsy, energetic little balls of flesh; but if you can minimize the risk of damage from said injuries, why wouldn't you?

      May 14, 2012 at 14:32 | Report abuse |
  3. Jeff

    Oh good grief!!

    The floor could hurt the kid...the chair they eat in could hurt the kid...the bed they sleep in could hurt the kid.

    What are you going to do? Stick the kid in a bubble? I think 95% of the kids that have all these things end up living a normal long life.

    These Pediatric journals need to stop scaring parents. Especially the first time parents that worry about everything.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JudgeDB

      The article is a bit sensationalist, but clearly the evidence indicates that young kids can do more damage to themselves if they fall while they have something in their mouth.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:12 | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Newsflash: Don't walk with things in your mouth. Do we need such an over the top article to tell us this?

      May 14, 2012 at 09:26 | Report abuse |
    • rafael

      You make choices about prudent practices for yourself all the time, something your toddler isn't in a position to do, so you have to do it for them. It's really not so hard. The article presents data, which you can choose to ignore. But if your child falls outside the 95%, you'll be singing a different tune.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:47 | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      Well..since I had 4 kids...none of them fell out of the 95%....so...yes you are right..I have nothing to worry about.

      May 14, 2012 at 11:01 | Report abuse |
    • Florida Grandma

      My toddler grandson, visiting from Minnesota, loved his binkie, and I did not interfere. I had spent two months "baby-proofing" my house before his arrival. He toddled happily about the house with his binkie. However, I took him to a playground, sans binkie, took him down a big slide, whereupon he broke two bones in his leg. Boy, did he need his binkie then!

      May 14, 2012 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
    • angelad

      You are SO right Jeff. Oh yeah – and here's another newsflash: LIFE IS DANGEROUS TO YOUR HEALTH! Perhaps we should all just quit living and beat it to the punch. Good Lord – if we were all SO fragile – would the human race have survived all these centuries! Get a grip people. Quit further terrorizing the new parents...

      May 14, 2012 at 12:02 | Report abuse |
    • Dawne

      Thank you!!! Heaven's sake.... Stuff happens.

      May 14, 2012 at 12:53 | Report abuse |
  4. Grumpster

    Maybe we should have the binky be more designed like a boxer's mouth guard. That'll solve that.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Rob L

    This article is so ridiculous; why are we trying to over coddle our children.

    Next thing you know we will have training wheels for walking because we are scared they will fall and get a bruise.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:13 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JustEric

      You could have just said, "I didn't read the article." It would have been easier to type, and more people would have been able to understand you.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:28 | Report abuse |
    • MKS

      Right on! I say we are better off not to follow the advice of these "professionals" and raise the children in a loving, but disciplined manner. Just look at the behavior of many of the children today – it is atrocious....

      May 14, 2012 at 09:31 | Report abuse |
    • hannah1

      I agree 100 %. I think they should all be in giant hamster balls until they're 10. No bruises, no bumps and lots of exercise!
      Also, they wouldn't be able to annoy us adults.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:32 | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      @MKS – the article is essentially advocating a "disciplined manner." Weaning your child off such things early is a good thing for their health/maturity, and quite arguably good discipline.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:06 | Report abuse |
  6. jefffielhauer

    This just in. Birth not safe for babies.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Boo

      Excellent comment! That about sums it up....

      May 14, 2012 at 08:44 | Report abuse |
    • teagansmomma

      Bwahahahahahahahahaha!

      May 14, 2012 at 10:45 | Report abuse |
  7. lisa

    There is no reason a toddler should still be using a pacifier at age 1. They are used to soothe a newborn. Once a baby learns to self soothe the pacifier should be thrown away. I agree with the writer by age 6 months. After age one a bottle is becoming a habit, it is no longer just a food source.
    Yes of course the baby is going to be upset and cry, but stand firm. After all, you are the parent.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • WhatNow

      You are a wise woman.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:09 | Report abuse |
    • ali

      To assume that something that works with one child will always work with another is very over simplified. From my experience allowing the child to dictate when they are ready for a milestone is much more effective then dictating to the child when they should be ready based on societal norms. My kids are long grown. Over the years I've watched my friends and family members raise their kids according to the current theory. What position they should sleep in, how long can they be on a bottle or pacifier, or when they should be potty trained seems to change every 3-5 years. Each group certain that they know better than the parents who came before them. What I've found is that every kids is different and will reach milestones at their own pace.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:25 | Report abuse |
    • Su

      No no, don't you get it???????????? No binky! No Bottle! The kid can't smash its face in on your breast. See another reason to put children in foster care if their mothers are tooooo neglectful & lazy & abusive to breast feed them!

      May 14, 2012 at 09:59 | Report abuse |
    • Karen

      Every culture and society is different. Americans are famous/infamous for encouraging/forcing early independence. Many cultures don't wean or takeaway breasts, bottlers, or pacifiers until age 3 or 4 because that is often a natural age of weaning [see Katherine Dettwyler's "Natural Age of Weaning"]. If a binky helps an anxious two-year-old get through a scary transition to a new daycare, so what?

      May 14, 2012 at 10:29 | Report abuse |
    • kittykatastrophik

      Su, are you drunk?
      Bottle feeding is not abusive .. NOT feeding your child is.
      Don't diminish the definition of abuse by putting something as arbitrary as "breast or bottle" in there. Not every woman can/or wants to breast feed. Let me guess, you exclusively breastfed your little bundle of joy until they were at least a year old & you felt stuck. Instead of resenting your precious child you instead projected your feelings of envy on mothers who weren't breastfeeding. You're the type of person who wants to make every one of your personal views a law, right?

      May 14, 2012 at 13:17 | Report abuse |
  8. suthunyankee

    This is yet another item that is leading to the pu$$ification of this country. We are systematically breeding out the toughness that made this country great. Kids are going to mess themselves up. Period. Thats how we learn not to do stupid things more than once. The ones that do end up doing stupid things more than once will be taken care of by natural selection.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:28 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Edwin

      Why protect your kid at all, then? Make 'em REALLY tough... if they survive.

      May 14, 2012 at 08:45 | Report abuse |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Edwin, the point he is making is not to overprotect your child. I knew a mom who was so overprotective she wouldn't let him cross the street by himself... at the age of 13! That kid is now a severly messed up adult.

      The point is, keep an eye on your kids and keep them safe but scrapes, bumps, bruises are all going to happen. It is a normal part of growing up.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:56 | Report abuse |
    • IMAWALLY

      Kids fall. It happens. Letting a toddler feel the pain of a broken tooth will not help his balance or ability to trip and fall. That's what kids do. But a little care on the part of the parents to prevent unnecessary injury is smart.

      May 14, 2012 at 11:00 | Report abuse |
  9. Max

    Are you serious? Children are swaddled and doted upon far too much these days as it is, and I have to read this drivel on a Monday morning? Please, what happened to letting children run and play? I have a great idea-just soak a sponge in the child's' favorite beverage, place it in a Zipper bag and all is good!
    No, wait-plastic bags of any type can lead to suffocation. Or worse. Yep. Breast feeding, preferably to the age of 21 is the only way to go.

    Sheeeeeesh......

    May 14, 2012 at 08:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • hannah1

      You're right. And just TRY taking a pacifier (w+f is a "binky" anyway?) or a cup away from a screeching brat. They'll have a meltdown! Last time I looked, pacifiers are soft. If you fall hard enough on your face, you'll bruise or cut it anyway with or without something in your mouth.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:29 | Report abuse |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Lots of people call them a binky.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:54 | Report abuse |
  10. serdich

    This article proves one thing..if sht happens..with observable frequency....

    May 14, 2012 at 08:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Sarah

    I've got to say, I'm typically a staunch opponent of over-coddling children and trying to protect them from EVERYTHING, but this just seems like common sense, not overparenting. Children are clumsy. They fall down, they get dirty, they break stuff...and that's okay - it's part of growing up. But isn't it just...well...simple wisdom to try to keep them from actually _seriously_ injuring themselves? No one is saying put them in a bubble or anything, but they can actually be seriously hurt from running around and falling down with something in their mouth, and it's a simple fix to have them put it down until they're seated.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rob L

      Ok people what percentage of the child population is 45,000?

      I mean seriouly, they are trying to scare parent into being over protective because 1% or less get hurt walking or running with these things...

      OMG i guess i cant drive any more; people get hurt driving...

      May 14, 2012 at 08:55 | Report abuse |
    • Sarah

      Sure, 45,000 is a small percentage of the population, but a) those are just the ones who are taken to the ER - as it clearly states in the article. This doesn't account for the injuries that Mom and Dad tend to on their own, or if the child is taken to a pediatrician's office, etc, and b) it's needless for even those 45,000 to be hurt for something so simple. It's not a matter of being overprotective - overprotective would be carrying your child everywhere so they don't fall when they walk at all. What this article is saying is that kids fall and get hurt on their own all the time, and that's just fine, but throw in a cup or bottle or pacifier and it could, potentially, be serious.

      There's a difference between common sense and coddling.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:02 | Report abuse |
  12. Edwin

    Transitioning to a regular cup at 12 months... why? Our doctor told us the same thing, but when pressed admitted there was no medical reason to do so. We delayed the transition until she was ready - she stopped using the bottle herself, about a year later than that, and has had no problems at all about it.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Allyson

      Prolonged bottle use is linked to obesity and increased risk for baby bottle tooth decay. A 24 month old is developmentally able to use a cup and should.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:04 | Report abuse |
    • watergirl

      A 12 month old baby doesn't even know they are a seperate person from their parents, much less learn how to "self soothe" I agree, children know what they need to do when they need to do. I believe just the opposite, expecting kids to self soothe and put themself to sleep at one year leads to sleep disorders, obesity problems, and other self soothing habits like smoking.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:15 | Report abuse |
    • OvernOut

      I was a "bottle baby" over 50 years ago. I had cavities in every single baby tooth that came in started seeing the dentist at age 3. I have about 12 "real" teeth left, the rest are all crowns. The teeth look pretty, but I wish I could've spent that money on something else. I've spent more time in dentist's chairs than most people spend at their hobby, I would like all that time back, too.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:41 | Report abuse |
  13. Teri

    This could be resolved by simply making the kid sit while eating/drinking instead of running around like a wild child. Wow. What a concept that something as simple as teaching manners could also prevent injuries. It also keeps juice off of the carpet and sofa.

    May 14, 2012 at 08:59 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rob L

      wow you mean some people still teach manners?? ;);)

      May 14, 2012 at 09:00 | Report abuse |
    • Guest

      Rob....I know what you mean! I though the new norm was to allow kids to do as they please. We wouldn't want to stiffel their "me" obsessed progress.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:22 | Report abuse |
    • hannah1

      Make a kid sit? ha ha ha You sure are out of touch. No one "makes" a kid do anything anymore. They are all self-serving, manipulative, tyrrannical spoiled brats. If junior wants to run with something in his mouth, you'd better LET him!

      May 14, 2012 at 09:35 | Report abuse |
    • PHinMiami

      Yes! It's called socialization.

      Most parents are too lazy to even try.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:32 | Report abuse |
    • shootmyownfood

      @hannah1

      Kids are spoiled brats because their parents let them be that way. Don't blame the little children – their parents obviously don't want to be "mean" and teach them manners. I blame the parents.

      May 14, 2012 at 14:47 | Report abuse |
  14. Voodoo Idol

    Who in the world is taking their child to a doctor, let alone an emergency room, for a bruised lip?

    May 14, 2012 at 09:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • hannah1

      Stupid people with an IQ of 58.

      May 14, 2012 at 09:22 | Report abuse |
  15. Possum

    Studies show humans are accident prone thus let it here by be decreed: Any Human, upon conception, should be removed as an embryo and placed in an intensive care womb that grows with them into a special, protective bubble, in which, they will spend their entire life, free from injuries of any kind. Well, at least until it's Harvest Time. You WILL be assimilated. Resistance in futile.

    May 14, 2012 at 09:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. hamsta

    your mom never taught you not to run with scissors? or with a sucker in your mouth? its called common sense. its not the sippy cup that is dangerous, its your failure as a parent to train your sasquatch.

    May 14, 2012 at 09:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • MKS

      Exactly!

      May 14, 2012 at 09:46 | Report abuse |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Some kids have pacifiers in their mouth a lot. You clearly have not had much experience around kids. Try keeping a 1 year old from ever running with a pacifier in his mouth. Good luck and may god have mercy on your soul.

      May 14, 2012 at 10:52 | Report abuse |
  17. DAVENYUSA

    Oh, great, the whiney-asss libs strike, again!

    May 14, 2012 at 09:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. JustEric

    I get a kick out of all of these clowns coming in here and claiming that we're making our kids "soft" (or some other term) by saying the child shouldn't be walking around with something in their mouths, while completely ignoring the fact that we're ACTUALLY making them "soft" by allowing them to keep those items (bottles, pacifiers, etc.) at walking age.

    Nice inconsistency, folks. Clearly didn't think that one through, did ya? 🙂

    May 14, 2012 at 09:33 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Glenn

      You're just too clever

      May 14, 2012 at 10:08 | Report abuse |
    • anon

      That pretty much sums up what I was thinking looking at these comments. The soft ones are the parents who don't take the stuff away from their kids because they can't stand to hear them cry/whine/moan.

      May 14, 2012 at 12:59 | Report abuse |
  19. glyder

    yet another useless study.let's hope no one takes these clowns seriously.

    May 14, 2012 at 09:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Su

    Thank you Dr. Sanjay – obviously someone has been provided with too much grant money! Kids have accident & kids get hurt that is unless . . . . you have them chained to your breast until they are 6 years old!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 14, 2012 at 09:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Tr1Xen

    So if the kid reaches for a binky, you should smack him upside the head. Then when you take him to the emergency room and the doctor asks, "What happened to his head?" you can say, "Well, he didn't hurt himself on a binky, I can tell you that much!" 🙂

    May 14, 2012 at 09:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Glenn

    NEWS MEDIA BAD FOR HUMANS!

    May 14, 2012 at 10:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. PLZ

    While reading this article I realized its over the top and unnecessary and then I started to think of the many clueless parents I have come across...so while a waste of time to most this sort of 'parents handbook' article probably does serve a purpose. 😉

    May 14, 2012 at 10:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. PHinMiami

    Pacifiers are NOT needed after 3 mo. & toddlers can drink from a cup at 12 mo. I know because I followed Dr. Spock's (I had an old book) advise and raise 3 boys that didn't use a bottle past 12 mo.

    Seeing toddlers/kids with pacifiers, I know that their mother failed them.

    Pacifiers and bottles are for lazy parents.

    May 14, 2012 at 10:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

    Are you kidding me? Hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of kids use binkies, bottles, and sippy cups. Kids have been using them for decades and I have never heard of anybody adversely affected longterm due to using them (except with kids who use binkies for too long which can mess up the teeth). What a non-issue.

    May 14, 2012 at 10:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Heather

    I thought this article was going to be about how many children who use pacifiers or bottles for extended periods of time often have rotting teeth – usually from sucking on a bottle with juice or milk all day long. I think that is the more serious problem as I have seen it with my own eyes – a 3 year old needing his teeth pulled because they are that bad from being dependent on a bottle for too long. I am glad I just go from breast to sippy cup with my babies.

    May 14, 2012 at 10:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. DeeNYC

    Doesn't matter if kids are holding anything, they're still going to fall and get hurt. I hope this doesn't end up being some kind of class action law suit.

    May 14, 2012 at 10:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. orangeUglad

    I find it hilarious that many are commenting against this article's advice because it is "over coddling" children, as I see the cause of the injuries- running around with bottles and binkies- as "over-coddling."

    May 14, 2012 at 10:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Ethics Board

    Not really shocking information. And as far as chipped teeth go or lacerations to the lip, these are minor injuries.

    Suffocation (ie co-sleeping or possible SIDS), submersion injuries and accidental ingestions are a far greater risk to children under or around 1 year old.

    May 14, 2012 at 11:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Amber

    i wouldnt worry so much for smashing in there teeth as i would be for bottle rott. if they have teeth then its by by with the bottle. drinking from the bottle and use of a binki causes buck teeth with prolonged use and all the suger thats in milk and juice just sits on there teeth all the time causing bottle rott. my sisters have it soo bad that have caps on all ther baby teeth because of my mom not stoping with the bottle. they have fallen many times with them in there mouth mut never damaged teeth. one of them fell face first into a key board for a computer and really messed up her front teeth and caused permanet damage to her teeth. if they have teeth they need real food not a baby bottle. but thats just my opinion.

    May 14, 2012 at 11:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Waterstar

    Around 2.5 thousand cases a year out of hundreds of thousands of babies and toddlers in the US....

    May 14, 2012 at 11:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Faith McFarland

    Bottles and blinks arnt dangerous. PARENTS allowing kids to walk around with stuff in their mouths are the problem. No risk of falling if they are sitting like they should with a bottle.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Old school mom......

    Kids wouldn't get hurt with sippy cups if they were taught to sit at the table and eat properly. Running around with a sippy cup or bottle is a recipe for a dental emergency or facial laceration. Pacifiers are just gross. Thankfully, my son never liked them. However, my nieces had them FOREVER.......they learned to talk with the dumb things in their mouths......mumbling through the binky. I think they had to go to kindergarten to finally end the habit. UGH.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Lanfear

    Gotta say that despite the contents of this article, I love how all the parents jump at the first chance they get to express their expertise in the comments section here. "If they can walk they don't need a bottle", "Weaning your child off such things early is a good thing for their health/maturity", My favourite one: "Prolonged bottle use is linked to obesity and increased risk for baby bottle tooth decay" .... hahahahaha! You really think all these tiny things will make any difference. Seriously, get over yourselves!

    May 14, 2012 at 12:21 | Report abuse | Reply
    • shootmyownfood

      Every little bit helps.

      May 14, 2012 at 14:50 | Report abuse |
  35. hamsta

    didnt your mother teach you not to run with scissors? or with a sucker in your mouth? trust me a sippy cup is not dangerous, it is however dangerous to allow a sasquatch parent to raise a sasquatch child.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. BeaverQB

    This is a silly article. Think about the items that most toddlers spend the most time with during the average day. My guess is that pacifiers, sippy cups, and bottles are some of the most used items for the average toddler. So, of course the items that cause the highest injuries are the ones that the toddlers are holding onto the most! That's simple logic. If toddlers held on to wood blocks or board books most of the time, my guess is that this study would reveal that wood blocks and board books are dangerous. Silly story designed to get more click-throughs on Gupta's blog.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • thatwave

      If children were sitting down while eating and drinking, and weren't relying on pacifiers to baby-sit them, it wouldn't be an issue. This isn't a problem caused by bottles; it's a problem caused by irresponsible parenting. I don't run around with utensils and glasses in my mouth and I don't have a problem.

      May 14, 2012 at 13:10 | Report abuse |
  37. Futon Torpedo

    Never! come between a baby and his binkie! I'm 44 and I still have my binkie... yeah its in storage but you just can't give it up. :o)

    May 14, 2012 at 12:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Portland tony

    With all this differing sage advice, maybe a step back is in order! Doesn't anybody see that all kids are just a little different and chronological age, within reason, is no standard to hold them to. Give em a chance to develop and quite likely they will simply amaze you.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. mayflower

    I nursed my kids until they were preschoolers. Problem solved.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. joe

    Kids need parents with self restraint, common sense, infinite patience, good hearts, lots of energy and the ability to love unconditionally. They don't need endless studies about what is or isn't good for them.

    May 14, 2012 at 12:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Sarina Grady

    I have a 14 month old son and he walks around with his soft straw cup all the time, and he has fallen and cut open his lip a couple times- both times without holding any cup! So I think these studies are just a waste of time and a ploy to scare parents......just use common sense and observe your child, and he or she will be fine.

    May 14, 2012 at 13:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. believer

    So remove the artificial breast (a.k.a. bottle) in favor of the real breast and you decrease the risk by two thirds. And they're healthier, smarter and have less allergies. Hmm, sounds like a no brainer to me.

    May 14, 2012 at 13:05 | Report abuse | Reply
    • mab18

      Not everyone has the physical (medical? not sure which would be the right word here...) ability to breastfeed.

      May 14, 2012 at 13:17 | Report abuse |
    • Ethics Board

      While I have no problem with children breastfeeding, this is actually no definitive proof that children are "healthier, smarter..." if they get breastfed over bottle fed. Read http://www.ahrq.gov/clinic/tp/brfouttp.htm

      Also, for some parents, breastfeeding is not an option (double mastectomy for cancer, maternal HIV, etc), so by your argument, those parents are doing a disservice to their children?

      May 14, 2012 at 13:36 | Report abuse |
    • PHinMiami

      Baby formula is a product of the 20th century. Man has evolved for 10's of thousands of years without it. Breast-feeding is superior to formula is every-way and for good reason. Using formula for only the 'Rare' occasions a mother is medically unable to breast-feed (NOT, "I just can't") is certainly not the norm we are seeing. Perhaps Moms (and Dads) should try drinking some formula, before giving it to their baby. The disgusting taste might make breast-feeding more viable.

      Hey, don't forget to 'prop' the bottle when you put baby to bed. This way you don't have to hold & cuddle your child. Then, later on, wonder why you haven't bonded.

      May 14, 2012 at 14:23 | Report abuse |
  43. thatwave

    My son is mostly breastfed, so bottles aren't an issue and he's never used a pacifier; however, I am teaching him that meal time is meal time and play time is play time, (plus sleep time is sleep time.) We don't mix eating and playing or eating and sleeping or playing and sleeping for safety reasons. When it's time to eat, he sits in his highchair and we enjoy a relaxed meal time. No choking hazards, no rushing, no stress.

    May 14, 2012 at 13:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. alcourts

    http://www.Hear-The-Truth.com

    May 14, 2012 at 13:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. insanity

    Please stop the insanity! We are the first-time parents of a 16 month old and we are rebelling against the community of alleged "experts." We'd rather listen to our parents than allow you experts to scare us by reinventing the wheel when it comes to parenting. Last time I checked, generations of us grew up just fine using bottles, formula, pacifiers and yes, even the "evil" walker, which by the way, our healthy child used all. Some of us are old enough to have had paregoric (opium salve) applied to our teething gums by our mothers. We all managed to survive. Enough already with the "expert" nonsense.

    May 14, 2012 at 13:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Leigh2

    Mine never injured themselves, just fumbled bottles and sippy cups for me to clean up. lol. I also haven't known anyone else's child who ever fell and injured themselves. But it doesn't hurt to air on the side of caution. More concerned about that person who picks up a pacifier off a dirty floor and jams it back into the child's mouth without cleaning it off first. At any rate, after a certain age, it isn't that 'cute' any longer. I knew a couple who permitted their child to suck on one until she was 3 1/2. To me, it looked kind of silly since she was beyond her baby years and into toddler hood, but more importantly, maybe it did something to her developing teeth.

    May 14, 2012 at 13:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Dangerkittie

    What's bad for toddlers are parents that abuse, neglect, degrade, ignore, beat, or otherwise harm. Bottles and binkies are no match for loving parents that feed, nurture, educate, house, clothe and pay attention to their toddlers. Good Lord, people need to get over themselves with this CRAP.

    May 14, 2012 at 14:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Paul

    I'm all for improved safety.

    But, to put this in perspective, that's about one in 10,000 children with injuries "involving" bottles, pacifiers, or sippy cups.

    How many injuries did not "involve" one of these objects? How were these objects "involved"? How many would have sustained the same injuries without something in their mouths? And, how many cases are there where a bottle, pacifier, or sippy cup actually prevented injury?

    May 14, 2012 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. aj

    If you coddle your kids too much and keep them from bobos and germs, they'll grow up with allergies and no pain tolerance whatsoever. You don't want your 18 year old walking around in a bubble.

    May 14, 2012 at 14:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. no nothing

    This is why I don't breed.

    May 14, 2012 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.