Ah, the pacifier debate! On one side, we have parents that swear by it, protesting that their baby and their lives would be in utter chaos if it weren’t for this magic little soothing instrument.
On the other side however, we have parents raging war at the pacifier – stating that it’s the cause of all dental problems and creates a culture that promotes the idea that kids should be seen but not heard.
And then there’s the less extreme ends of the spectrum. I suppose I fall somewhere in between there.
I didn’t have strong feelings one way or the other during my first pregnancy. I have younger siblings and I can remember as a child giving my baby brother a pacifier, so I never thought of it as anything other than the norm.
We bought pacifiers for my first child. However, she just wouldn’t have it. Luckily for us, she was easily settled with milk and wasn’t overly vocal.
When it came to my second child, we thought we could do the same thing. We were wrong. He was an absolute mess without his pacifier – the moment it fell out of his mouth, all hell broke loose.
I think it’s easy for parents with one child to judge what has worked for their child, forgetting that all children, like adults, are individuals, and what works for one wont necessarily work for the other.
People also seem to love rejecting science these days. It’s a bit of a religion if you ask me!
I’ve found certain judgemental parents to be extremely dismissive of the idea that a pacifier could not be doing serious harm to children that use them.
On the flip side, I have a friend whose child is now 4 and wont stop sucking their fingers. Now this is a problem – the dentist has stated that their teeth will be damaged if this continues.
But this wasn’t caused by a pacifier. This child was sucking their fingers even without a pacifier.
It’s really easy to put all situations into a single box, tie a pretty ribbon around it and say this leads to that.
However I’m finding as a parent of 3 kids, life just isn’t that simple.
Should you use a pacifier? I say it’s entirely up to you. And your baby!
Looking for other useful baby products? I share here the Baby Products I Couldn’t Live Without to give you some ideas.