The Use of Pacifiers

Pacifiers

Pacifiers-Should You Use Them?

New parents are always wondering and asking should they use pacifiers. Being a new parent, one of the highest priority is keeping your baby comforted and content. Many babies can be soothed with just a soft rocking, while some babies prefer to suck. It seems that some babies are only comforted when they are sucking, even when their belly is full.
There is nothing wrong with letting your baby suck on a pacifier. There is actually a benefit to babies sucking on a pacifier. There has been studies performed that have shown babies that suck on a pacifier at bedtime or naptime have a reduced risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). The studies don’t show that using the pacifier will eliminate any risks, but there was a very strong indication of a lower risk in babies sucking pacifiers at bedtime and naptime. Another added benefit of your baby sucking on a pacifier is the pacifier is easier to break than your baby sucking on their thumb.
Pacifiers
Some babies like the sucking feeling from a pacifier. They are not hungry, but the sensation of sucking is what is needed to keep them comforted. You should never force your baby to take the pacifier if they just spit it out. When you know your baby isn’t hungry, but is still fussy, then you can try the pacifier to see if it will comfort the baby. This may keep your baby content.
The most important thing to remember if you use a pacifier is to choose a pacifier that is safe. Never give your baby a used pacifier. If the pacifier falls on the floor, then always clean it with warm water. When the pacifier starts to wear out and cracks, then replace the pacifier. You also never want to rinse or clean the pacifier off in juice or anything with sugar in it as this will get into the gums of the baby’s mouth and can cause damage to teeth. Another tip is don’t clean the pacifier with your mouth or saliva. I have seen some mothers do this and it is not only disgusting, but the bacteria that is in your mouth will be transferred to your baby.

Selecting a Pacifier

PacifiersSelect a pacifier that is recommended by pediatricians and the American Dental Association. Use a pacifier clip that clips onto the babies bib or car seat. You should never tie a string around the pacifier and place it around the baby’s neck. This is very dangerous as the baby can get caught up in the string and cut off air flow to the baby.
There is nothing wrong with using a pacifier to sooth and calm your baby. Select an appropriate pacifier, and then realize that as the baby grows there will come a time to remove the pacifier from your baby. This transition time can be stressful to both baby and parent however it does not take many days until your baby learns to comfort and settle without the aid of a pacifier.

Our Use of Pacifies

PacifiersOn a personal note both my children and my five grandchildren have had pacifiers with no ill effects. I remember my son put his in the garbage to give it to the garbage man. One of my granddaughters just stopped using hers at about eight months. The others had theirs removed when it seemed it was the right time. None of the children had any dental problems as a result of using soothers. None of them reverted to sucking their thumbs. I think in all cases the pacifiers were used just at bedtime and naptime and not used throughout the day. The use of a pacifier is an individual choice but our experience has been positive.

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