Adult sippy cups can be a great solution for helping disabled adults retain some independence by maintaining their ability to drink on their own.
Sippy cups come with specially designed lids so that the liquid inside can’t spill out at will. The lids ensure that the liquid will not leak, and help adults maintain independence in their daily lives. Many adult spill-proof cups also feature ergonomic handles or other aspects designed to make a cup easier for an older individual to lift and drink from.
Today we’ll explore why adult sippy cups can be tremendously helpful for seniors, and dive into some of our favorite spill-proof cups for seniors!
Why Drinking From a Standard Cup Can Be Difficult for the Elderly
In many cases, adult seniors cannot drink easily from traditional cups because of physical disabilities. They may find it too difficult to grip a cup or have problems grasping the cup’s handle or wrapping their fingers around the rim.
Some seniors may also be so afraid of attempting to pick up and drink from a standard glass or cup that they decline to drink as much water as they should, resulting in dehydration.
If adult seniors have difficulty grasping adult cups or lack the confidence to hold and lift a standard cup, adult sippy cups are a great alternative!
Some examples of situations where seniors may benefit from a no-spill adult cup include:
- Parkinsons or hand tremors that makes lifting a full glass of liquid challenging
- Arthritis, where gripping and lifting a cup can be difficult or downright painful
- Fear of dropping a glass and making a mess, resulting in less liquids consumed
- Difficulty swallowing due to dysphagia can make standard cups too hard to use
- The inconvienence of getting up to get more water due to limited physical mobility can result in dehydration
Factors to Consider in Choosing a Sippy Cup for an Adult
Adult sippy cups are not usually terribly complicated, but they can be constructed differently. There are several features that should be considered when choosing the best match based on how the cup will be used and what kind of mobility issues the user has.
Built-in Straw or Straw-Compatible Opening
Some adult sippy cups have a built-in straw. For adult seniors who cannot operate the necessary coordination to drink from a regular cup with a straw, this is an ideal solution (plus you don’t have to worry about misplacing or losing the straw)!
However, most spill-proof cups are simply designed to be used in coordination with a separate straw, rather than being built with a self-contained straw. Water bottles tend to be the exception!
Most seniors will want to opt for an adult sippy cup that’s dishwasher safe. Cleaning sippy cups by hand can be difficult, especially if the cup has a built-in straw where liquid residue tends to clog and stick.
Some adult sippy cup lids can be cleaned out with toothpicks or other tools, but generally using a dishwasher is the best and most effective option. Luckily, the vast majority of sippy cups made for adults are dishwasher safe!
When a cup is microwave safe, the seniors will be able to reheat beverages that have gone lukewarm. This is why a microwave-safe cup is especially essential for seniors who plan on using the cup for drinking coffee, tea, or other hot liquids that could potentially be unpleasant when unintentionally left to cool.
Seniors should choose an adult spill-proof cup that’s made of light-weight materials, as this will reduce strain on the seniors’ hands and arms as they hold the cup while keeping arthritis symptoms at bay.
Number of Handles
Some adult sippy cups have just one handle, while others have multiple handles.
Dual handles are useful because they allow the senior to pick up and stabilize the cup with two hands rather than one, offering more control and comfort.
Some adult sippy cups will be more spill-proof than others. Some cups can be turned completely upside down without letting any liquid out. Other adult sippy cups have a “lock” mechanism or a pressure-based system to control the flow of liquids.
Consider how likely a senior is to drop or spill a cup, and how any spill-proof abilities may or may not interfere with the user being able to access their liquids easily.
For example, some spill-proof cups simply have small holes that could still dribble out a tiny bit of liquid if dropped, but won’t result in a huge spill. Others use a pressure-dependent hole to control the flow of liquids.
You’ll also want to consider the type of lid when choosing an adult no-spill cup. If the senior will be removing the lid themselves, it’s important that the cup lid is easy to unscrew and remove. Lids with a simple twist-and-pull mechanism can be easily removed by adult seniors, as opposed to lids that require squeezing or popping the lid off.
Another thing to consider is the size of the spout opening. If the senior has a special straw or extra-long straw they rely on to comfortably sip water throughout the day, you’ll want to choose a no-spill cup that has a big enough opening for a straw to fit through.
Size & Capacity
Check the adult sippy cup’s overall capacity, especially if adult seniors have difficulty drinking enough water each day. For best results, adult sippy cups should be at least 12 fluid ounces in volume (the recommended daily intake of water for adults).
Smaller adult sippy cups are also useful if adult seniors have issues with dropping things, as it will reduce the amount of liquid that might be spilled.
Capacity can be a tricky issue – on one hand, you’ll want a large enough capacity for a senior to consume plenty of liquids without requiring them to get up and refill the cup. However, larger cups end up being heavier when full, and therefore more difficult to lift for a senior with limited arm strength. You’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of capacity vs weight when choosing the best option.
Hot vs Cold Liquids
Consider if the senior will be using the sippy cup for hot or cold liquids. Cups designed to handle hot liquids may be made of different materials – especially in order to keep the user’s hands from getting too hot. Adult cups that are only made for cold liquids can start leaking when placed in the microwave, so make sure you’re always following the manufacturer’s instructions for their use!
Some adult spill-proof cups will have special textured grips or ergonomic grooves that make a cup easier to hold for an individual with arthritis or dexterity issues.
Best Sippy Cups for Elderly Adults
1. Providence Independence 2-Handle Mug: Best Two-Handle Mug
Providence offers a two-handle mug that’s ideal for seniors with arthritis, with dual handles with slight contours that allow users to grip the cup steadily and take strain off of their arms if they have difficulty holding a cup using one hand.
This set comes with three cups and two different lids: The anti-spill lid has two openings – one wide enough for straws and natural drinking, with the other opening is composed of two small holes, allowing for a lighter flow of liquid to come out for more control.
The second lid is designed similar to the product mentioned above, where the user can hold down a pressure vent hole to prevent liquid from exiting the spout.
The clear design of this 10oz cup allows you to see how much liquid is inside, and the spill-proof cup is compatible with warm or cold liquids. In addition to being dishwasher safe, it’s microwave safe too, so you can heat up your lukewarm coffee without issue.
This cup is also made in the USA and is BPA-free. Best of all, it comes in a pack of three, so you can have several of these handy mugs at your disposal!
- Dual-handle mug that’s easier to lift for those with arthritis or tremors
- Two lids included – a spill-proof spigot and a pressure-vent lid
- Can be used with hot or cold liquids
- Microwave and dishwasher safe
- Comes in a pack of three
- A few users reported that this cup doesn’t hold up well after many runs in the dishwasher
2. Flo-Trol Feeding Cup: Best for Soups and Smoothies
The Flo-Trol Feeding Cup is a great “no spill” drinking cup that’s an especially good fit for individuals who need help drinking safely while lying down. It’s especially well-suited for thicker liquids.
This cup features a unique pressure valve system that prevents liquids from spilling. Simply place your finger over the hole on the lid to prevent liquid from passing through the spout. Lift your finger off of the hole to release the air pressure and allow liquid to flow through the spout.
This design is remarkably useful for bedridden individuals, as it allows you to drink while lying down. If you’re caring for a senior who is unable to sit up in bed, this cup can be a great easy-to-use tool to help them.
Additionally, this cup’s mouthpiece is large enough to fit a large straw, allowing this adult sippy cup to work especially well for purees, soups, and smoothies.
This cup is also made to minimize and spills if dropped or knocked over (although some liquid still has the potential to drip out of the vent holes).
While this cup is definitely a huge win for caretakers, it may still be difficult for someone with hand tremors to manage, as it requires some dexterity to press a finger over the vent pressure hole.
This adult no-spill cup is fairly small, making it easy to handle. It has three measurement lines to show how much liquid is in the cup at a glance, with lines at the 4,6, and 8-ounce measurement lines. The cup is also dishwasher safe for easy cleaning!
- Great for help feeding soups, smoothies, etc
- Unique pressure-valve system to control liquid flow
- Three measurement lines
- Dishwasher safe
- Can be used when lying down
- No handles, making it difficult for someone with hand tremors to manuever
- Size may be too small to provide adequate water hydration
3. AliMed Dysphagia Cup: Best Cup for Dysphagia
The AliMed Dysphagia Cup is another fantastic cup for those struggling to swallow.
This adult spill-proof cup has a large oval rim at the top, allowing the senior to tip the cup further forward until it hits the brim of your nose and requires you to tilt your head.
The cup also includes a wide, weighted base that provides additional stability for shaking hands.
Plus, the handle on this cup is extra-tall, allowing a senior to use up to four fingers to comfortably hold the cup and provide a better grip.
This cup comes in a two-pack and can hold up to 8 ounces. The transparent material allows you to see how much of the beverage is left. Plus, these cups are dishwasher-safe for easy clean-up.
- Oval opening allows the cup to be tipped further forward
- Wide, weighted base
- Extra-tall handles
- Fairly small at 8oz, requiring frequent filling
- Some users find this cup to be much lighter-weight than implied, making it not as useful for seniors with hand tremors
4. Provale Regulating Drinking Cup: Another Great Choice for Dysphagia
The Provale Drinking Cup is specifically designed for those with dysphagia. The drinking cup delivers a fixed amount of 2 teaspoons of thin liquid per sip, allowing for small, manageable swallows for each drinking motion.
With its broad base to minimize tipping and dual handles, this cup is easy to drink even for those with tremors or hand dexterity issues.
Plus, the cup is dishwasher safe making it easy to clean and maintain.
- Provides a set amount of liquid per sip, which can be important for dysphagia patients
- Dual handles make this cup easy to grip
- Dishwasher safe for easy cleaning
- Users note that this cup actually needs to be lifted quite high to be sipped from, making it at time challenging to use
- Some users found that the lid for this cup leaks a bit
- Quite expensive compared to other options
5. Nosey Cups: Great for Drinking While Keeping Head Up
Nosey Cups are great no-spill cups for seniors with dysphagia who have difficulty swallowing. The rim around the top of this cup features an indentation hole where you can comfortably fit your nose through, making it easier to drink from the cup without needing to tilt your head back all the way.
This design allows the senior to drink from the cup while keeping their neck straight, which in turn makes it much easier for a user with dysphagia to swallow, as the muscles in the user’s throat can remain relaxed.
Nosey cups are sold in a three-pack.
- Ideal for seniors with dysphagia
- Allows the user to drink comfortably without tilting their head back all the way
- Comes in a three-pack
- Dishwasher safe
- Not spill or leak-proof
- Not ideal for hot drinks
6. Homecraft Clear Polycarb Mug: Another Great Adult Sippy Cup
The Homecraft Clear Polycarb Mug is a solid adult sippy cup that’s ideal for elderly individuals with a limited or weak hand grasp.
This cup includes a spout lid, which allows for easy and convenient drinking, as well as a recessed lid that is designed to reduce splashes while drinking.
You won’t have to worry about breakage either since these adult sippy cups are made of tough, shatterproof material.
This mug holds up to 13.5 oz of any kind of beverage – water, coffee, tea, or soda – and has markers on it to measure how much you’re consuming at a time. Plus, this cup is dishwasher and microwave save (although the lids are not – so remove them before cleaning or heating up the drink).
- Includes two lids – a spout lid and a recessed lid to reduce splashing
- Holds up to 13.5 oz of liquid
- Ideal for hot and cold drinks
- Markers on cup show how much has been consumed
- Only the lids are dishwasher safe – not the entire cup
- Some users find the lid too difficult to remove without a struggle
7. Kennedy Cup: Best Spill-Proof Cup For Lying Down
The Kennedy Cup is another type of spill-proof cup that is commonly used to assist the elderly, handicapped, and disabled with mess-free drinking. The cups are designed to be tilted at an angle that allows for easy consumption of liquids – whether sitting or lying down.
The spill-proof lids screw tightly onto the containers to contain the drink and prevent leaking even when tilted at a 90-degree angle. The cups can be used with any standard disposable or reusable straws.
Plus, these latex-free cups are dishwasher safe up to 180 degrees. They also can hold 7 oz of liquid and are suitable for both hot as well as cold drinks.
- Can be used while sitting or lying down
- Won’t leak even when held at a 90 degree angle
- Can be used with disposable or reusable straws
- Dishwasher safe up to 180 degrees
- Comes in a pack of three
- Only hold 7 oz of liquid
- Some report the handles to be not very ergonomic
- A few users found the cup to be less leak-proof when used with hot liquids
8. Rehabilitation Advantage Clear Spouted Cup: Another Two-Handle Option
The Rehabilitation Advantage Clear Spouted Cup with Two Handles is a great two-handle cup for seniors who struggle with arthritis or hand tremors.
The cup features a weighted base and a tight-fitting lid which includes a drinking spout. This clear cup lets you see how much liquid has been consumed, and it’s capable of containing both cold and hot liquids.
The cup’s two extra-long handles extend out an extra 1 1/4″ and are 3″ long, providing plenty of secure space to hold and grip the cup, even if the user’s hands aren’t entirely stable.
The cups are dishwasher safe on the top rack only, and can hold up to 10 oz of liquid.
- Two handles for easy lifting
- Weighted base to help with hand tremors
- Capable of using with hot or cold liquids
- Extra-long handles
- Dishwasher safe on the top rack
- Those without Parkinson’s or hand tremors may find this cup to be heavier than necessary
9. Marusya Easy Grip Cup: Cup With Best Grip
The Marusya Easy Grip Cup is designed to reduce pressure for those with arthritis.
These ultra-lightweight cups feature ridges along the sides, putting the senior’s fingers into an ergonomic placement. This makes the cup easier to hold, even for those with dexterity issues. These cups were even designed in collaboration with hand therapists and occupational therapists.
The lid isn’t specifically designed to prevent spills, but they are made of sturdy BPA-free plastic so you don’t have to worry about the cup breaking when dropped.
Plus, the cups are microwave as well as dishwasher safe. They come in a set of four, and are 12 oz cups.
- Ridged, intended sides for easier gripping
- Microwave and dishwasher safe
- Available in a set of four
- Open top that’s not designed to be spill-proof
10. Spill Proof Insulated Coffee Mug with Tumbler Lid: Best For Hot Drinks
The Spill-Proof Insulated Coffee Mug is a great choice for seniors who prefer hot beverages or require an on-the-go mug.
This cup is insulated in order to maintain a desirable temperature for both hot and cold beverages. It’s also designed to keep your hands safe from burns.
With a built-in, easy-grasp handle and sturdy polypropylene material, it’s easy to hold as well as durable.
The snorkel-style tumbler lid helps spillage or leakage while enjoying beverages, from coffee and tea to soda and water.
The mug can hold up to 500ml of liquids and is dishwasher safe!
- Insulated mug keeps hot beverages warm
- Long, easy-grasp handles
- Dishwasher safe
- It’s unclear if the mug is microwave safe or not
Alternative Options: Best Water Bottles for Elderly Seniors & Beyond
Next we’ll detail some alternatives to the standard adult sippy cup. If you’re primarily concerned about hydration and need a cup for sipping water, we’ve selected water bottles below that may be a great fit for a senior who needs help staying hydrated.
With built-in straws, many popular water bottles may be suitable for seniors who plan on propping their bottle on an overbed table and leaning forward to sip.
We’ve also included some spill-proof cup alternatives that use silicone covers to be fitted to standard-sized cups!
11. SP Ableware Hydrant Water Bottle: Longest Drinking Straw
The Hydrant Water Bottle from SP Ableware features a 1 liter water bottle with a long tube and mouthpiece, allowing a senior to sip water convienently from the extra-long straw at their leisure.
The water bottle even comes with a clothing clip that allows you to attach the water bottle to a jacket, strap, or other nearby stable object.
The bottle’s markings on the outside allow both the caretaker and user to monitor fluid intake to ensure the user stays hydrated!
The spout at the end of the tube features a bite valve that makes drips or dribbles a non-issue.
This design is extremely valuable for elderly patients as it allows them a constant, instant access to fluids at all times, increasing independence and hydration.
In addition, it’s dishwasher safe!
- Long tube allows for constant access to water
- Includes clip to secure the water bottle nearby
- Some find the clothing clip to not be strong enough to secure the bottle adequatly
- Requires some level of sucking motion to start water flow, which may be difficult for some
12. Munchkin Miracle 360 Cup: Easiest Spill-Proof Water Bottle for Seniors
The Munchkin Miracle 360 Cup is a 24oz water bottle that’s simple and easy-to-use. While it’s designed for children, its spill-proof design makes it a great choice for the elderly as well!
The cup features a unique 360-degree drinking rim. All the users needs to do is tilt the cup up and sip from the valve edge – then the liquid will be released.
The only drawback is that this cup isn’t designed to be used for hot liquids – only cold ones. The grippy material around the middle also makes this cup easier for those with arthritis to hold. We’ve seen several reports of users saying this cup works great for their elderly relatives!
The cup even comes in some bright, fun colors to add a splash of fun to a senior’s daily hydration.
The cup is dishwasher safe on the top rack, but not microwave safe.
- Unique 360-degree drinking rim
- User simply tilts the cup and sips from valve edge to release liquid
- Silicone grip around the cup’s middle makes it easier to grip
- Only suitable for cold liquids, not hot ones
- Not microwave safe
13. Thermoflask: Most Insulated Water Bottle With Built-in Straw
ThermoFlask creates durable, sturdy water bottles for hikers and adventurers, but these water bottles may be ideal for certain seniors as well!
This water bottle includes two lid options – a unique leak-proof “chug lig” and an updated built-in straw lid, both of which work great for seniors looking for an easier way to stay hydrated. These lids allow for one-handed or even hands-free drinking!
ThermoFlask’s bottles are made from stainless steel with vacuum insulation that keeps beverages ice-cold for 24 hrs, and hot up to 12 hrs with double-wall vacuum construction. Plus, they come in several sizes from 18oz to 40oz sizes, which means a senior can drink a ton of water without running out.
While these bottles are designed for adventuring, there’s no reason they won’t work well for a slower-paced senior too! As a bonus, they also come in several fun colors, including blue, grey, pink & green.
- Sturdy, vacuum insulated water bottle keeps liquids cool
- Includes a leak-proof lid and a straw lid
- Comes in several sizes depending on hydration goals
- Water bottle can weigh 1 lb or more, so may be too heavy for many to manuever (although if kept at an appropriate height, the built-in straw may negate the need to lift the bottle).
14. Owala FreeSip Insulated Water Bottle: Another Great Spill-Proof Water Bottle
The Owala FreeSip Water Bottle is another great stainless-steel, insulated water bottle that may be suitable for certain seniors.
Its patented “FreeSip” spout is what makes it an especially great choice for keeping elderly individuals hydrated, allowing the drinker to either sip sitting upright through the bottle’s built-in straw, or tilt the bottle bag and swig from the spout.
The water bottle relies on a push-to-open lid in order to protect the spout and keep it clean. and provides easy carrying features for any adult on the go!
The attached handle also allows the bottle to be looped to a senior’s walker or potentially to a stand nearby for easy access.
The water bottle comes in a 24oz or 32 oz capacity size and can keep cold drinks cold for up to 24 hours with its double-walled insulation. It’s made with BPA-free materials and has a dishwasher-safe lid (but the cup itself needs to be washed out by hand).
Plus, the bottle comes in different colors to mix and match with your style!
It should be noted that this bottle is only designed to hold cold liquids – not hot ones.
- Double-wall insulation keeps cold liquids cool
- Includes a unqiue spout with a built-in stra
- Handle allows the bottle to be attached to a walker or handle
- No official weight info, but users report it’s not unusually heavy
- Only holds cold liquids
- Only lid is dishwasher safe
15. O-Sip! Silicone Straw Lids: A Great Adult Sippy Cup Alternative
These O-Sip Silicone Straw Lids aren’t spill-proof cups, but instead, allow you to transform a standard tumbler into a spill-proof cup. These stretchy silicone covers can expand to fit up to 4″ diameters. Just place the cover over a cup, put a straw through the hole, and you’re all set!
By adding these lids, you can use a large cup with a straw for safe, convenient hydration!
- Covers can stretch to fit 4″ diameter
- Great for large drinks where a straw is desired
- Comes in a pack of three
- Not a traditional spill-proof cup
- These stretchy lids can be difficult to take on and off – they may require a caretaker’s assistance
16. Hydr-8 Water Bottle: Best For Hydration Monitoring
The Hydr-8 Water Bottle isn’t an especially unique water bottle, except for its time markings! The added time markings allow a caregiver and drinker to easily keep track of how much water has been consumed so far, making it ideal for meeting certain hydration goals.
The water bottle holds up to 32oz of water and features a large handle along with a built-in straw.
- Time markings make it easier for a senior to track their water intake and meet hydration goals
- Large-capacity cup holds 32oz of water
- Includes a large handle and built-in straw
- Not designed to be spill or leak-proof
Keep in mind that using these tools can require a bit of a transition and expirementation. You may need to try a few different set-ups or models before finding a good sipping solution!
Have you or an elderly loved one ever used an adult sippy cup or modified drinking cup? Let us know your favorites in the comments below!
Last update on 2021-07-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API