I’ve waited four weeks for this. The day we finally decided to introduce our baby girl to a pacifier. On those days she seemed inconsolable, I would just think to myself, “not much longer… she’ll get a paci soon.” Well, the day is finally here.
And she doesn’t like it.
Why did we wait so long to give her a paci? That’s just want I want to talk about today. Here are my reasons for waiting a month to give my baby a pacifier. And my reasons for wanting her to take one now (aside from the obvious).
Why We Waited
The hospital I delivered Norah at doesn’t give out pacifiers (unless absolutely necessary). They do this because they are HUGE on breastfeeding.
When you have your baby there, they give you a handout explaining that they recommend not using a pacifier for the baby’s first four weeks. This is to prevent (the ever-dreaded) nipple confusion.
Nipple confusion is when baby can’t figure out how to suck on mama because they have been sucking on something that isn’t shaped like mama (aka a pacifier). I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t look like one of those!
There is also a concern that introducing a pacifier too soon will affect baby’s weight gain. If they suck on paci instead of mommy, they aren’t getting all the calories they need!
For those reasons, we decided to hold off on using a pacifier. Well, as I said before, the day finally came and we decided it was time!
Now we have to deal with the fact that she isn’t too crazy about it. She’ll take it sometimes, but it’s obvious it’s not her favorite thing in the world.
Why We Want To Start Now
Why do we want her to take a pacifier now after holding off for four weeks? There are two main reasons:
- It’s believed that pacifiers help reduce the risk of SIDS
- It can act as a pain reducer
Aside from those two reasons for getting Norah to take her paci, there’s the obvious “it’ll soothe her and make her stop crying.”
If you’re planning to breastfeed, it’s definitely recommended that you wait on giving your little one a pacifier. We did, and I’m glad we did. We had so many problems with breastfeeding at first (still need to post an update about that… note to self) that any little thing–like nipple confusion–could have ended up derailing us completely.
BUT we’re faced with the problem now that she may never take a pacifier. Which means we might miss out on those benefits I was just talking about.
So, in the end, it’s your choice whether or not you want to give your baby a paci. There are obvious benefits and obvious drawbacks. This is just my experience. And who knows, maybe my baby girl will take to it in a couple days (we’re definitely not giving up). And maybe waiting four weeks has absolutely no bearing at all on her preference for them. Maybe she just plain doesn’t like them.
My recommendation? Do a little research before you make your final decision. And, as always, do what is best for your family and don’t let anyone try to convince you otherwise!