Pacifiers and Breastfeeding: What You Need to Know

Pacifiers and breastfeeding, sure or no? In case you are a breastfeeding mother, I’m positive this query has crossed your thoughts. Pacifiers have turn into the norm in Western societies.1 They even have a number of nicknames they go by, like paci, binky, dummy, nini, or soothie.

Though it’s common to see an toddler or toddler with a pacifier of their mouth, there are a number of execs and cons to think about when introducing your toddler to a pacifier. Let’s enable you to make your resolution a bit simpler by diving into the whole lot you need to learn about pacifiers and breastfeeding.

Can I Give My Child a Pacifier If They’re Breastfeeding?

The quick reply is sure, you should utilize pacifiers when breastfeeding, however let’s break this down. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) launched new steerage earlier this yr for breastfeeding for the primary time in a decade. On this new launch, they proceed to recommend that pacifier use be a private resolution made by the mother or father.2 You learn that proper. Analysis has proven that providing a pacifier to a wholesome toddler exhibits no important affect on the length of breastfeeding when supplied earlier than or after the breastfeeding relationship is established as much as 4 months.3 Phew; you’ll be able to chill out now, mama.

Execs and Cons of Introducing a Pacifier

Now, let’s discuss the advantages and issues of pacifier use.

Execs of Utilizing a Pacifier

1. It decreases the Danger of Sudden Toddler Loss of life Syndrome (SIDS)

The AAP steerage for secure sleep contains utilizing a pacifier persistently to decrease the chance of SIDS. Though the explanation why pacifier use reduces the chance has not been decided, research have proven a positive relationship between pacifier use and decreased threat of SIDS. It’s important to supply the pacifier throughout all sleeping durations, each nap occasions and bedtime. The AAP notes that if the pacifier falls out whereas the newborn is sleeping, there is no such thing as a must put it again in, and in case your child doesn’t like a pacifier, don’t power them to make use of one.4

2. It’s Soothing for Infants

Newborns have a pure sucking reflex. Nonnutritive sucking will be soothing in your child.1 It will possibly even promote emotions of safety in your toddler.5

3. It Can Be a Ache Reliever

Sadly, some infants must endure widespread procedures equivalent to heel sticks, venipunctures, circumcisions, or immunizations which will trigger ache. It has been discovered that utilizing a pacifier for infants underneath six months can have analgesic, pain-relieving results.1

Cons of Utilizing a Pacifier

1. Dental Issues

In relation to “longer-term” pacifier use, dental issues will be on the forefront of issues. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) expresses issues about pacifier use after 36 months. When a pacifier is used for prolonged durations, the chance of your baby growing oral and dental issues, equivalent to malocclusion, anterior open bites, and posterior cross-bites, will increase.5

2. Otitis Media (Ear Infections)

Pacifier use can enhance your baby’s threat of growing an ear an infection, particularly recurrent ear infections.6 It has been beneficial to cease pacifier use after six months to lower the chance of growing otitis media.1

3. Infections

Pacifiers can harbor yucky germs that would make your toddler sick. Germs may trigger gastrointestinal and respiratory infections. Guarantee your toddler’s pacifier is clear earlier than every use to assist lower germ publicity.1

4. Potential Affect on Milk Provide

As we all know, infants like to suck. If they’re given a pacifier when hungry, inflicting them to overlook a meal, this might affect your milk provide. Breastmilk manufacturing relies on demand, so in case your child feeds much less, you might begin producing much less milk. It’s important solely to offer your child a pacifier when you realize they don’t seem to be hungry to assist fight this potential downside.3

Suggestions for Introducing and Utilizing a Pacifier

There are numerous manufacturers of pacifiers. There are totally different bases, totally different nipple shapes, totally different weights, and the checklist goes on. Is one pacifier higher than one other? With time, you’ll discover the one your child likes greatest. When searching for a pacifier, the AAP recommends you discover one massive sufficient to not match utterly in your baby’s mouth. You additionally wish to guarantee it has a agency protect and vent holes and is one single piece, making it tougher to interrupt into small items your child may choke on.5

As soon as you discover the pacifier your child likes, listed here are just a few ideas:

  • Be sure to clear the pacifier earlier than utilizing it every time. This may assist lower the germs your child is uncovered to.
  • Don’t power your child to make use of a pacifier. Some infants love pacifiers; some need nothing to do with them.
  • Solely provide the pacifier when you realize your child isn’t hungry.3
  • By no means tie a pacifier round your child’s neck.
  • Examine the pacifier earlier than every use. Search for any structural injury or put on that would enhance your child’s threat of choking.5

So, there you go, mama, pacifier or no pacifier; the selection is yours. Weigh the dangers and advantages of pacifiers and breastfeeding and do what you’re feeling is greatest in your child. In case your child has superior medical wants or you aren’t positive in case you ought to introduce a pacifier to your child, take time to seek the advice of together with your pediatrician for additional steerage.

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