- Reduces SIDS: Sudden infant death syndrome or SIDS is the unexpected death of a healthy baby. SIDS can happen anytime, especially during sleep, as the baby may suffocate due to excess bedding or when in an incorrect sleeping position. Experts assert that the use reduces the chances of SIDS as it helps open airways wider and lets the infant breathe better
- May help relieve colic: The sucking reflex brings a sense of security and soothes the baby. Parents can try pacifiers to control the repeated bouts of colic in a baby
- Soothes and works as a distraction: There are times when the baby is just fussy, and no solution works. Pacifiers could relieve the fussiness by working as a distraction and relief
- Pain relief: The pacifier is known to alleviate pain in babies undergoing invasive procedures such as lumbar puncture, catheter insertion, and even immunization.
- Helpful during air travel: Parents dread traveling by air with their baby as the abrupt changes in air pressure during flight makes the little one’s ears go pop. A pacifier is helpful in keeping the infant’s mouth engaged with the sucking reflex, which normalizes the air pressure in the ear
- Benefits the preterm infant: Research shows that non-nutritive sucking, using a pacifier, helps a preterm infant improve the sucking reflex, which is vital for breastfeeding
- Avoids early cessation of breastfeeding: A study has found that the pacifiers may help the mothers, who have a high risk for depression, to continue exclusive breastfeeding for a longer duration
The baby should be at least four weeks old (almost one month) before you introduce him to a pacifier. By four weeks, breastfeeding is established, and thus a pacifier will not interfere with the process.
When To Discontinue Pacifier Use?
Babies give up pacifiers on their own between two and four years of age. Most break the habit through peer pressure, and also because they are old enough to soothe themselves without pacifiers.