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Though mothers introduce a bottle for various reasons, there is no reason a baby must learn how to use one. There is no advantage in a baby's taking a bottle. At about 6 months of age, the baby can start learning how to drink from a cup, even though it may take several weeks for him to learn to use it efficiently. If the mother is going to introduce a bottle, it is better she wait until the baby has been nursing well for 4-6 weeks, and then give it only occasionally. Giving a bottle when breastfeeding is going badly is not a good idea and usually makes the breastfeeding even more difficult.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|