Too often pacifiers can be viewed as a negative thing for babies. And as a first time mom, you might even be hesitant to start the habit.
But, pacifiers can actually be a good thing for momma and baby! And YES, even for breastfed babies.
Cara Dumaplin, from the infamous Instagram account Taking Cara Babies (if you don't follower her, do it now), talks about why she loves pacifiers for babies. And we couldn't agree more!
Here are 3 reasons why a pacifier is a good thing...
1. It appeases the sucking reflex. Most babies have a strong sucking reflex. And some even start sucking their thumb while they're in the womb. Sucking is how they receive their nutrients, however it also has a soothing effect. It can help calm an upset baby and give you (especially if you're nursing non-stop) a break.
Sometimes babies will suck even when they're finished eating-- a non-nutritive suck which simply means they are sucking without gaining nutrients.
Non-nutritive sucking has many benefits including:
- releases endorphins in the brain
- promotes relaxation
- provides a sense of security and comfort
- encourages sleep
2. Reduces the risk of SIDS. Sucking on a pacifier during naps or bedtime can reduce the risk of SIDS. In a study published by the AAP, researchers “recommend that pacifiers be offered to infants as a potential method to reduce the risk of SIDS. The pacifier should be offered to the infant when being placed for all sleep episodes, including daytime naps and nighttime sleep.”
3. They are disposable. When it's time to stop using a paci, you can simply throw it away. It's an easier habit to break than getting a child to stop sucking his/her thumb or fingers. They are also easy to clean and disinfect. No more toting a lovie or blanket around town.
The pacifier myth
If you're trying to breastfeed and concerned about offering a pacifier, we have good news for you. You can do both! Research demonstrates that nursing moms who are allowed to offer a pacifier are equally successful with breastfeeding.
What about the idea that your baby will become confused and refuse the breast if they like the pacifier? Well, true scientific research dispels this myth of nipple confusion and shows that not offering a pacifier does not increase your chances of breastfeeding success with your baby.
Even though a pacifier can be a good thing, not all babies like them right away. And you might need to try several brands to find one your baby likes best.
If you're feeling frustrated and like you're trying to force the pacifier, try practicing it a little bit each day. An easy way to get a baby to get used to the paci is to offer it when they are drowsy after they nurse or eat. This is a good time to slide the paci in using reverse psychology.
If they still aren't interested, other methods of soothing like swaddling will always help!
Order your pacifier clip set today!
Do you have other pacifier tips and tricks? Comment below!