Bottles, Sippy Cups & Pacifiers Can Be Hazardous to Your Kid's Health

upset toddlerMoms take note: Those cherished sippies, bottles, and binkies could be dangerous, according to  a new study published in the journal Pediatrics.

It seems kids who cruise around the the house with these time-tested soothers in their mouths are ending up in the emergency room.

Researchers at the Nationwide Children's Hospital and Ohio State University combed through ER records and found that 45,398 children were rushed to the hospital with injuries caused by bottles, sippy cups and pacifiers between 1991 and 2010.


That's nearly 2,300 cases a year of lacerations to the mouth, cuts and bruises on the lip or tongue and chipped teeth. Baby bottles were the biggest offenders, making up 65.8% of the cases and newly cruising one-year-olds accounted for two-thirds of the injuries.

This should give parents a whole new perspective on the notion of baby-proofing. Plug up the electric sockets, latch commodes and cabinets but also be aware of the surprising dangers of sippy cups. Of course there are plenty of hazards that are impossible to avoid, especially if you have a rambunctious boy who scales bookshelves and kitchen islands a la Spiderman. You can't swath them in bubble wrap (I've tried) and they are way to smart to be sequestered by a baby gate (my son had that figured out by 18 months). But responsible parents do what they can to ward off those awful ER visits, even if that means parting with a beloved binky earlier than planned.

Most of those reported boo-boos occurred when children tumbled with the item in their mouths, so the solution is simple: tots should sit while they sip and parents need to break the bottle and paci habit before kids start cruising. Yes, there will be tears of protest, but getting stitches at an overcrowded ER is a heck of a lot worse for everyone to endure in the end. Point is, it's okay for a parent to be a little paranoid and act on it. It's the responsible thing to do.

Should kids be allowed to keep their bottles and binkies?

Image via Just Taken Pics/Flickr


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