If you are a new parent, then you might have different questions in mind regarding pacifiers like what are different types of pacifiers? How to introduce a pacifier to the baby? How to use a pacifier? And most importantly, how to choose the best pacifier for breastfed babies? Here is an article with answers to all your questions so that you can easily introduce the best pacifier for breastfeeding babies.
What is a Pacifier?
A pacifier is a nipple attached to a handle that is designed to entertain and comfort your baby. While most of the babies like to suckle only during feeding, some other babies like to suckle the nipple of a bottle even after the feeding time. The suckling helps in pacifying an irritated baby and also helps in comforting the little ones. If it is handled properly, then the habit of sucking can help in comforting the nerves of the baby and calming a fussy infant.
Different Types of Pacifier
Baby pacifiers are quite simple and do have many variations, so it is not difficult to define which one is best for your baby whether your little one is breastfeeding or not. There are primarily two types of the pacifier.
1. Multiple Piece Pacifier
Pacifiers are one of the most common pacifiers available in the market. In multiple-piece pacifiers, all the components like a nipple, handle, and the guard is manufactured individually and then finally combined.
2. Single Piece Pacifier
Single piece pacifier is also known as a one-piece pacifier and is made from a single piece of plastic, latex, or silicone by molding it. The best thing about single piece pacifiers is that they can not get apart while using them, which minimizes the risk of baby choking in the pacifier.
The above-mentioned pacifiers are available in a wide range of creative designs and shapes. Below mentioned are some of the famous styles and designs of baby pacifiers.
Feeding Pacifier – Once your baby becomes six, then he or she can be fed using a pacifier as well. This pacifier is perfect for warmer months. You can put some fresh fruit juice in this feeding pacifier, which will help in providing refreshing fruity flavor to your baby.
Stuffed Pacifier – Do you want to give a cute and appealing pacifier to your baby? If yes, then a stuffed pacifier is the perfect solution for you. In this, the pacifier is combined with a stuffed animal. This style of a pacifier has been available in the market from the past few years, but it has gained remarkable popularity among parents.
Novelty Pacifier – You can soothe and entertain your pacifier with the amazing novelty pacifier. It is available in different types of unique and funny designs.
What are Pros and Cons of Using a Pacifier?
Below mentioned are some of the pros and cons of introducing a pacifier to your little one.
Pros of Using a Pacifier
1. Might Reduce SIDS Risk
Doctors have speculated that when a baby sleeps with a pacifier, it reduces the risk of the baby for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The doctors have not yet figured out the reason behind it. Nevertheless, according to certain studies, using a baby pacifier while the little one is sleeping might actually affect the brain of the baby in a way that helps in preventing certain instances of SIDS.
2. Helps the Little One in Leaning Self Soothing
Pacifier helps the baby to calm down or go back to sleep without having to wait for the parents. It helps the baby to learn self-soothing at a younger age.
Cons of Using a Pacifier
1. It Could Impact Breastfeeding
If your baby realizes that a pacifier is sufficient to get sucking satisfaction, then it could lead to difficulty in breastfeeding. If the baby starts developing this feeling, then they find it difficult to nurse from their mother.
The design of nipples that resemble the body of a mother carries the least risk of baby choosing a pacifier over breastfeeding. In addition to this, you can try different methods for soothing your child before giving a pacifier to them.
2. Increases Risk of Ear Infection
There are certain studies that present evidence that there is a relation between regular pacific use and an increase in the risk of ear infection. It is not clear that either it is due to sucking action or due to germs that come on the pacifier despite best efforts by parents. It is one of the reasons that suggest that you should use a pacifier for your baby as little as possible. In addition to this, you should discontinue the use of the pacifier as soon as possible.
3. Possible Dental Issues
The position of the jaw that a baby should use to hold the pacifier properly in the mouth could result in tooth misalignment in certain situations. Most dental risks arise when a pacifier is used regularly and for a long time. Therefore, try to use the pacifier for baby sparingly and try to discontinue its use as soon as possible.
How to Know if Baby Wants a Pacifier?
Now one of the most common questions is how to know if a baby wants a pacifier. Your little one would give you clues that will help you in deciding the right time to introduce a pacifier. Below mentioned are some of the clues.
- Baby sucks on her thumbs or fingers.
- Sucks on the corner of toys or a blanket.
- The baby sucks the breast but does not draw milk and starts crying when pulled away.
- Babies happily suck the milk bottle even if it is empty.
If your baby shows the above-mentioned symptoms, then he or she is a perfect candidate for a pacifier. In many cases, the baby does not give hints, so you will not know if the baby needs a pacifier until you introduce one to your little one.
How to Introduce a Pacifier to the Baby?
If you are thinking about how to introduce a pacifier to the baby, then here some easy tips that you can consider.
Choose Right Time – You should set time wine to introduce a pacifier to your little one. The perfect time is after the baby has been fed. However, the chosen time should not be close to the baby’s next meal.
Check for Baby’s Mood – The next tip is that you should consider the mood of your baby. You should introduce the pacifier when the baby is happy, and he or she is feeling content and calm. If your little one is crying or upset, then you should hold until the baby’s mood improves.
Let Baby Develop a Taste – In the beginning, your baby might reject the pacifier due to confusing new taste. In order to introduce it to the baby, try to dip the pacifier in breast milk and then give it to the baby. Once your baby develops taste, he or she might not easily give it up.
Choose the Right Type – Every baby is a unique individual. Therefore if one baby likes one type of pacifier, that does not mean the other one will also like the same. You need to find out which one is best for your baby. For this, you can try different types, colors, shapes, and texture.
How to Choose the Best Pacifier?
You must be thinking about how to choose the best pacifier for your little one? If you think that a pacifier is simple baby equipment that you are right. However, there are some points to consider while buying a pacifier so that you end up buying the right one and best for your infant.
Pacifiers are available in different sizes according to the age group.
Small – For kids of age 6 or less
Medium – Kids belonging to the age group of 6 to 18 months
Large – For kids of age 18 months or older
While purchasing a pacifier, it is essential to stick to the age. A pacifier that is too big can lead to issues of choking, and too small might be rejected by your little one. Therefore while buying a pacifier, you should pay attention to the age group mentioned on the pacifier.
The construction and design of anything that enters the mouth of a baby is highly important. Pacifiers that are made of three different pieces could be a little bit risky. While buying this type of pacifier, make sure that the nipple is properly attached. If the nipple gets removed easily, then your baby might also easily detach it, which might not be good for your little one.
Many pacifiers are made of single piece material, and they are considered the safest choice for your little ones. These baby pacifiers do not fall apart, which makes them the perfect choice.
The nipples of pacifiers are made up of different materials.
Latex – Latex is soft and flexible. Due to soft material, these nipples can wear out easily and faster as compared to the other materials. These pacifiers are usually not dishwasher-safe, so you should avoid them to wash using dishwasher unless it is mentioned on the packaging. If your kid has a latex allergy, then you can opt for silicone or natural rubber.
Silicone – It is one of the most commonly used materials. It is easy to clean and is less likely to retain odors. It can be cleaned using a dishwasher cycle.
Hard Plastic – It is one of the least common materials that are used to create nipple Plastic is usually long-lasting and easy to clean. However, most babies reject plastic nipple, and it can develop a jagged nipple that might be harmful to you little one.
The shield or guard should have measurements of at least one and a half inches. It helps in preventing the baby from drawing the pacifier’s nipple, which in turn helps in preventing choking. In addition to this, the guard should contain holes for ventilation. These ventilation holes allow the circulation of air between the guard and face of the baby, which helps in avoiding moisture rash.
Since the pacifier spends a lot of time in the mouth of your baby, so it is better to buy one that is easy to clean and sterile. You should choose a pacifier that can be boiled or cleaned with the help of a dishwasher, as it will help in keeping germs away from the pacifier.
Best Pacifier for Breastfed Baby
Here is a list of best pacifiers for your baby, so that you end up buying the right one.
The First Years Gumdrop Newborn Pacifiers
This one is the best pacifier for newborn babies. It is light-weight and has smart construction to provide the babies with a soothing and comfortable experience. The silicone material of this pacifier is light so that young babies can easily hold it in their mouth. It has a one-piece design that is best for your babies.
Philips Avent Soothie Pacifier
It has easy design but is highly preferred by parents. It has a single-piece design made from silicone and a cylindrical nipple. The entire shape of this pacifier is round, and it can be easily put in the mouth of your little one.
NUK Newborn 100% Silicone Orthodontic Pacifier
It has a smart shape and is made from soft silicone material, which helps in providing soothing feelings to your little ones. The nipple of this pacifier has an open design, which makes the cleaning process easy and also helps in preventing the retention of moisture.
Nuby SoftFlex Orthodontic Pacifiers
It has a light-weight construction, innovative nipple design, and handy features, which makes it a great choice for breastfeeding babies. It has a curved handle so that your little one can easily hold it.
Evenflo Feeding Balance Plus
It has a cylindrical nipple, and it comes in white color in order to make it a gender-neutral choice. It has cylindrical nipples that allow the baby to use the same mouth and tongue position that they use while nursing. It has light-weight construction so that it can be easily held by the baby.