Friday, 12 June 2015

About pacifiers

A Pacifier is used to comfort a crying baby. I has many names ....Binky, Soother, Comforter. It is a simple magical object that stops the baby from crying. Magical as no one is sure how it does. Maybe sucking it is comforting or a thing in mouth distracts it from crying.

Now there are two groups of people, one who is against using it and one who is for. So if you are thinking about getting into one of these groups, research on the it. It will be entirely your discretion as you know what is good for you and your baby.

1) Calms down a colicky baby.
2) Avoids the habit of thumb sucking.
3) Helps baby fall asleep.
4) Helps during the need to stop breastfeeding.

1) Can interfere with breast feeding as the baby can sense the sucking difference.
2) Baby might become dependent on the pacifier.
3) It might increase the risk of middle ear infection.
4) Prolonged use might cause dental problems.
5) Can cause infections if not cleaned properly.

Avoid use of a pacifier if the baby does not have a problem with feeding and is a happy baby. Also some babies might not accept it when you introduce it to them. Do not force the baby. You can introduce it to the baby after a few days. Try using it as a last resort to calm the baby.

If you choose to use a pacifier for your baby take care of the following:
1) Wash it with mild soap the first time you buy it. It needs to be sterilized for babies below six months. After 6 months of age, it can be simply washed with soap and water. Read the cleaning instructions mentioned on the pack before using.
2) Prolonged use of pacifier can crumble it. Make sure you replace the crumbled pacifier.
3) Do not use sweet substances on the pacifier.
4) Do not share pacifiers with other babies.

Weaning from pacifier:
1) If you want to wean it when the baby is an infant, you will need to introduce a lot of distractions, like singing songs, massaging, rocking, swaddling.
2) For babies older than 6 months, introduce a new soft toy or a blankie.
3) For toddlers trade it with a new toy. Or tell that the pacifier broke and a new one is not available.

Ultimately it depends on you how you want to comfort your baby. Consult a pediatrician in case further help is required with weaning or comforting your baby.

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