Practical Parenting – Soothers

May 21, 2011

You may have heard about the risk of nipple confusion if babies are given soothers. I know plenty of breastfed babies who love their soothers, but it’s totally up to you whether you go with them or not. My daughter still adores her soother at the age of 3 ½ (although only at night now) while my son turned his nose up at his at 8 months. There are pros and cons to using soothers. I find they calm my daughter down very quickly and were great for getting her back to sleep when she woke. On the downside there were times when she was little when we were going in to reunite her with her soother throughout the night. We don’t have that problem with our son but he’s much harder to settle when he gets distressed without a soother.

If you do decide to go for soothers then you’ll need to decide between the cherry style or the flat style. The flat style is said to be better for the development of teeth but as children loose all of their front teeth at 7 I’m not sure how a soother at the age of 0-3 can harm them. Also flat soothers are much easier to transport as they can be bought with a cap that keeps the soother sterile. Some babies find it hard to keep the flat soothers in their mouths and may find cherry soothers easier to keep a hold of, particularly when they’re small. The cherry soothers are also great for chewing when teething.

Even if you’re hoping not to use soothers there’s no harm in having one sterilised soother to hand for the hospital just in case you feel you need one.

It can be quite tricking getting a soother into the mouth of a crying baby in the middle of the dark. I found it easier to do if I sucked the soother to wet it before attempting to put into my kid’s mouths.



One Response to “Practical Parenting – Soothers”

  1. elainebutler Says:

    Thought i’d comment on my post now that my daughter has finally given up her soother at 4.5 years. We’ve been trying wean her off it for about a year now – easter bunny, santa and the soother fairy all offered to take them – and we had her down to just night time but it took a chat from the dentist for her to agree to put her soothers in the bin.

    He showed me how her soother had created a gap between her upper and lower teeth and i think my daughter knew from my reaction that i was horrified and that it was time to give them up. Afterwards we bought her a new teddy to help her with giving up her soothers, She found it hard to get asleep for about two weeks but only asked for her soothers back twice and even then only half heartedly.

    I think she felt so grown up going to the dentist that she got enough courage to give up her soothers. If i had know she would have reacted to the dentist like this i’d have gone a year ago.


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