Is it okay to give pacifier to your baby?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Jan 22, 2016

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Quick Bites

  • Pacifiers can soothe the baby.
  • They can be a source of distraction.
  • Pacifiers can cause middle ear infections.
  • Their prolonged use can cause dental problems.

Most new mothers can’t decide whether they should give their baby a pacifier or not. Well, it is up to you irrespective of what you have been told. In fact, here is a breakup of the good and the bad for your perusal. But, before you decide anything, know that every baby is different and you have to see what works for yours.


Pacifier benefits

The good

Pacifiers can be a key to contentment for a lot of babies. For such babies, nothing but a pacifier may work. Some other benefits include:-


  • It is disposable. When you want to stop your baby from using a pacifier, all you have to do is throw it away. If the baby gets used to sucking his/her thumb, you may have to deal with it for as long as it takes for the baby to consciously realize it is a bad habit.
  • It may soothe the baby. 
  • It may put your baby to sleep.
  • It may reduce risk of sudden infant death syndrome.
  • It may ease discomfort on a flight. Babies are not capable of voluntarily popping their ear or yawning to ease pain in the ears. Sucking on a pacifier may do the trick for them.
  • It may act as a temporary distraction, especially when the baby is getting shots or undergoing blood tests.

The bad

  • Introducing pacifiers early on may interfere with breast-feeding. While it may seem like the same things, breast-feeding and sucking on a pacifier are different. Also, a baby is quite sensitive to the differences between the two.
  • Pacifiers increase risk of middle ear infections.
  • Prolonged use can cause dental issues. It has been found that a prolonged use of pacifiers for a couple of years may cause misalignment of teeth.

If you end up letting your child use a pacifier and have a hard time weaning, consult your doctor.


Read more articles on Parenting Tips.

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