While pacifiers or dummies for babies has it advantages, it also has a few cons that parents need to be aware of. Are pacifiers good for your baby?
Opting for the use a dummy – or pacifier
– for your baby is a personal choice, but seeing every other baby with a
pacifier makes you sit back and think about the reasons behind such choices. To help
you make your decision, whether or not to spit the dummy, we’ve pulled together
some pros and cons for using a pacifier.
Pros of using a dummy
Pros #1: Helps soothe your baby
Newborns cry! Typically, they just
cry they become settled and start following a proper routine. As the name
‘pacifier’ suggests, a dummy can help you placate a crying baby almost
immediately, unless your baby has a health issue or a serious discomfort. Many
people use dummies to help babies sleep well and keep them calm while parents
are busy, such as when they’re shopping or in the middle of a gathering.
Babies become focused in the sucking
motion of the dummy, and they enjoy doing it as its shape is very similar to a breast
nipple. Mostly babies fall asleep while doing this calming action. It’s sort of
like baby exercise, which tires them out until they fall fast asleep.
Pros #2: Helps reduce risk of SIDs in infants
When you give your bub a dummy to soothe them, they keep sucking on it. This continuous movement helps them to breath
normally, as it keeps the jaw in a constant state of action, which further
opens the nasal passage. As their mouth is not completely closed, there’s a
very little chance they would stop breathing, as oxygen can easily pass in and
out through their mouth by the sides of the dummy. Once your baby falls asleep
during the day or night, if the dummy falls out, there is no need to put it
back in baby’s mouth.
Pros #3: Helps encourage breastfeeding
Babies enjoy the sucking reflex they
get from a dummy. However, many people perceive that a dummy reduces baby’s
need for breastfeeding. According to many recent studies, a dummy cannot fulfil a baby’s need to suck; rather, it creates the need for breastfeeding in
them, making them desire it more.
of using a dummy
Cons #1: Increases risk of getting infections
Babies have a very sensitive immunity
system, as it’s still developing. It makes babies highly susceptible to
catching infections and diseases. Babies under age of three are particularly at
high-risk of catching ear infections, which can be very painful. There can be several
reasons behind this, and the use of a dummy is one of them.Fluid gets trapped in
middle ear due to pressure changes caused by a dummy.This fluid can then
develop into an ear infection in baby’s ear.Parents need to consider whether a dummy is providing benefits, or is harmful to their baby.
Cons #2: Hindering breastfeeding
Although scientific research suggests
that dummies boost breastfeeding in babies, it can also hinder breastfeeding if
dummy-use is started before you start nursing. According to experienced mothers,
the right way is to first establish a breastfeeding routine until your baby is
around a year old. By this time, your baby would become accustomed to the breast;
bub will then be able to distinguish between the two.
Cons #3: Teething issues
On one hand,a dummy can help soothe
your baby; on the other hand, your baby can start developing dental issues if
they have started growing teeth and is still using their dummy.It has been
observed many times that babies who use a dummy face an issue with teeth
alignment. Therefore,it’s best to regulate when and how often you allow your
baby to use a dummy, as using it for a long period of time may have a negative effect in
the long term. Read more on teething symptoms, health issues and soothing here.
Cons #4: Dummy addiction
Using a dummy all the time may
eventually lead to an addiction to it. Addiction in any case is never a
positive. Babies are unable to sleep well,or settle easily if they lose their pacifier
in the middle of the night. They get up and start looking for it, and if not
found within seconds, they start crying loudly.
It becomes very much difficult to
soothe your baby without a pacifier –and you’ll find it very difficult to help
bub give up their dummy-addiction at a later stage.
Cons #5: Dummy germs
Babies keep playing with and dropping
their dummies everywhere. We cannot control the actions of such little babies. Moreover,
using it all the time for long hours makes it very susceptible to picking up germs
and bacteria, as well as fungi.
You need to be very cautious and
wash it often. Stay alert and never let them use an unclean pacifier. Wash it
properly to remove all traces of germs. It can become very hectic for you to do
this extra task in your busy routine, so protecting their baby from the germs
of a dummy becomes a point of concern for a lot of parents.
You may find it more convenient to
wash your dummies in the dishwasher.
You can use zip-lock bags to store
your baby’s dummy in the refrigerator. If your budget allows, you can quickly replace
a used or dropped pacifier with a new one.
Try to quit the use of a dummy
before your child gets permanent teeth, as it can damage their teeth for life –
which can end up costing you more in dental and orthodontics fees.
Dummies can be dangerous for your
baby if you hang it on a cord or necklace, as your baby can get strangled with
it. Getting the right size and correctly-shaped dummy is
also important for your baby, as it helps bub to hold it properly.
Welcome to Babyinfo – the ultimate pregnancy and newborn information guide. We are here to help you find all the pregnancy and baby info you need to make the most beautiful experience of your life even better.
Our team is comprised of an amazing mix of experienced mothers, recently pregnant women, and editors with tremendous medical knowledge in the fields of gynaecology and childbirth.
Think of us as your friendly advisors, here to give you honest, easy to understand and authentic information. We are here to be your support at this crucial time in your life, when you need it the most.
Note: This website is in no way meant to replace doctors, hospitals, or other healthcare providers that may be utilized by current mothers or mothers-to-be. All mothers are advised to see a doctor for medical advice and the appropriate care before, during, and after pregnancy.