Customized lid and cup for child with dysphagia(Kensington NH)

My daughter is 6 years old and has been trying to learn to drink from a cup on her own for few years. She has gotten good at holding it and tipping it the right amount, but due to the shape of the spout she loses a lot out of the corners of her mouth so we have to hold a towel under her chin 100% of the time to catch it. Additionally, if she goes just a little too fast too much comes out and she chokes on it. We have tried so many toddler cups on the market but nothing fits her. However, I’ve figured out the parameters she needs and would love to discuss them with someone who thinks they could program and print such a cup. Thank you for your interest! This would be a massive life improvement for all of us.

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Hi! I am the Community Coordinator- we will do our best to match you up with a maker!
Closest chapter to you is NYC
@loretod @Professor.Zia any of your chapter members/students you can think of who would be interested to help with this long distance?
@bingfangchen? @michaeljd33? @MMC_Kristina is there a better material to use for this type of project?

Hey @amandajkelly12, some caution is required here as typical 3D prints are not food safe, and are not a suitable choice for cups and drinking vessels.

There are still options, including using a 3d print to create a mold, or using a different manufacturing process.

I would encourage you to add any relevant info here, as a larger audience may lead to more ideas.

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Hello All,

Let me know if i could help you guys with this requirement.

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Hi All,

Thanks for the info I’ve seen so far. I would really like to find a food safe way of making this. Margot struggles so much to drink from regular toddler cups so I really think it’s worth it. Anyone who thinks we can move forward just let me know!

Thanks again!!

Hi Amanda,

I guess there are few type of Food grade filaments available in the market approved by FDA.
If our design is ready…we can find out the solution to print it as well…!!

We can talk about your requirements…then it will be easy for me to take a start…!!

Gurbaksh Singh (Techie Baksh)

Amanda, Thank you for sharing this design challenge. Congratulations on Margot’s improved independence with drinking. I imagine it’s rewarding for you and her as skills develop and yet the spillage and certainly the choking would be difficult.
Is Margot’s increased ability reliant on a particular commercially available cup? If so, can you share the brand/model? If not, is there any criteria that is desirable or should be avoided in the design? I’m thinking size, shape, texture, weight, color, etc.?


Hi Brady,

Thanks so much for your interest and questions! Yes, Margot does have a current commercially available cup. It’s the Talk Tools recessed lid cup: I can share a video at any point of her drinking, but partly because of her scoliosis tipping her to the left and partly because of her insufficient lip closure, as she sips she loses liquid out the left corner area of her mouth. If we could even make a soft attachment to add on to the cup to help redirect it or help her gain more closure that would also be an idea. On the current cup, the handles are perfect, the size is good but could be bigger if needed just not smaller, the color doesn’t matter so much but the translucency is nice though not necessary. I can keep brainstorming and can also sketch the mouth-piece shape if you like!

Thanks again and I look forward to more thoughts and questions,


Thank you for the link and the explanation. I looked at the cup and see that it is provided with (2) lids, one with two small holes and one with a larger hole to accommodate at straw. Do you have and are you using both lids?

I can think of a few ways to implement modifications to that cup:

  1. Replace the whole lid with one that has a lip that is twisted to align with the angle that Margot drinks at.
  2. As you’ve said, make a soft attachment that could utilize the straw hole lid and present the liquid in the appropriate location, angle, and quantity that would work best for Margot.
  3. Add a “dam” to the existing lid that would restrict the liquid from pouring out of the side of Margot’s mouth.

Let me know about your lid usage, and if you have a preference on which of the above paths you’d like to try first.

I prefer the public dialogue on this forum as I believe it will help others present their quality of life challenges and could act as a framework for all to see the things to consider and discuss as custom solutions are developed. However, if you would prefer to communicate through email we can do that too ( I would just post milestones here as we reach them in hopes that anyone else struggling with a similar drinking challenge could benefit from our efforts.


Amanda and I are communicating through email as we continue to develop the lid to help Margot drink independently. After acquiring a Talk Tools cup through Amazon, I was able to measure and replicate the threads for the lid. Then modeled up a 1st draft prototype and have sent images for Amanda to review and provide feedback and/or alternate design options. Once we have a few variations, I’ll send them to her for testing and then work on a more permanent solution that is food safe for long term use.


Thx for the update Brady, this looks great!