Monday, January 4, 2010

The Experts: On Pacifiers

So, after reading Dr. Karp, I registered for two 0-3 mo. pacifiers

and two 3-6 mo. pacifiers

because that was as long as we were going to need them.  Cecelia was going to chow down on some fingers at 6 months.  Well, first things first...we're getting close to 6 months and she prefers her pacifier to fingers, toes, teething items and, sadly, me - except for when she actually needs to eat.  Now, we have made her pacifier for naps and sleep only at this point to step her down.  Doesn't it sound like she's on a nicotine patch?  Oh and when we would just really like her to be calm and quiet - if she's freaking out in the carseat (which she still does sometimes) or in church, for example.  So, what's the problem - well, there's some conflicting info out there in regards to pacifiers.  The breastfeeding experts will have you believe that it is not only not necessary, but just plain bad.  If baby is getting her sucking needs met at the breast she simply shouldn't need to suck on a pacifier, OR her fingers.  Well, sheesh - if I could I would.  Cecelia seems to not realize the body of research that states this information and she would very much like her pacifier, thank you very much.  So, as was the case with slings, I've heard from other mothers who's baby wouldn't take a pacifier and they tried a bunch.  At first I was jealous, I was torn that she wanted/needed a pacifier and I wasn't successfully meeting her sucking needs.  I worried about low supply and looks of disdain.  Now I look back and I'm thankful that we found something so easily that works for our daughter.  Babies R Us had a sale on the kind of pacifiers that we use - buy 2 get one free, so I went to check it out.  I thought that since the first two sizes were 3 mo. increments that the rest would be too.  But - the next size up was 6-18 months.  What!?! Jackpot - a whole year!  I found one of the sets with a glow in the dark handle for easy nighttime finding.

 And I picked up two other sets that I like but don't love.

I plan to either exchange them for ones that I do love when they've restocked post sale or return them and keep my free one - ah the retail genius.  The one that we chose is the Avent BPA Free Orthodontic pacifier - it has air vents to provide air circulation to the sensitive skin around the mouth and the one I picked is clear around the mouth so that you can still see her face - sort of.  There is no upside down and it has a handle.  Cecelia likes to play with it and chew on all sides of it, hook her thumb in the handle, fling it across the room - a pacifier and a toy all wrapped into one.  Plus it comes with a protective case for the nubbin part that doesn't get used often enough.  After she was hooked, I heard from other moms about why they choose the soothie

instead and it's because it's all one piece...well, she hasn't managed to tear this one apart yet, so I'm sticking with it.  Now onto the next chapter in pacifying - one of the other reasons I was, at first, opposed was that when she lost it, I'd have to find it and replace it during waking...and sleeping hours. And this is one of the reasons that Elizabeth Pantley, of the No Cry Sleep Solution, suggests gently removing the pacifier gradually to eliminate the suck to sleep association.  We'll get there...right now I'm happy she has any association with sleep.  Also, there is now research to encourage pacifier use for up to one year while sleeping to prevent SIDS as promoted by the AAP.  I don't always agree with their recommendations, but when I do, I'll tell you about it.  So now one year is my new deadline...we'll see.  Check back in 6 months and see if we've kicked the paci habit.

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