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Thread: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    37

    Default Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    Hello...

    Just wanted to get some feedback from you more experienced bf moms as it relates to pacifiers. Has anyone used the pacifier to pacify their newborn in between bf sessions? My almost 3 week old tends to be quite fussy & antsy in the wee morning hours despite having just nursed and had her diaper changed. I used a pacifier tonite and swaddled her and it seems to be doing the trick. I wonder if there are any negative affects to giving her the pacifier (ie: nipple confusion, etc.). Look forward to hearing your opinions and/or experiences.

    Leslie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    1,168

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    There are some risks associated with pacifier use, especially in the early weeks. Nipple confusion is one potential problem. Another risk is that if the baby is doing a significant amount of her sucking on something other than the breast, then mom's breast may not get the stimulation necessary to produce enough milk. A third risk is that a baby might reduce her milk intake if she is happy sucking on the pacifier.

    These are risks, not guaranteed outcomes. Some babies seem to have a much greater need to suck than other babies do, and I've know at least one die-hard breastfeeding mom who was thoroughly surprised to find herself using a pacifier with one of her several babies. If you decide to continue giving a pacifier, watch closely for any impact on his nursing behavior.

    I believe LLL's general advice is that waiting until 4-5 weeks of age before introducing any artificial nipples minimizes the risk of nipple confusion and milk supply issues.

    --Rebecca

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    8

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    I have a 4 wo and we have used a pacifier since about 2 1/2 weeks (as well as ebm in a bottle for one night feeding). My dd has had little to no problems, my milk supply is strong, and she's gaining at a good rate...I do watch her closely and would eliminate anything but the breast if any problems occur. I think each baby is different!

  4. #4
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    Jan 2006
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    18,063

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    my 9 year old, when he was a baby was very high needs and he would suck and suck and suck forever on my breast at bed time, but 3 sucks on the pasifier and he was out like a light. He didn't use it during the day, unless we were out in the car and he could not be at the breast. Watch your babies latch and if it seams to change then I would limit time on the pasifier.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    65

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    I also used a pacifier and had no side effects. Make sure you use the orthadontist recommended pacifiers. If you use something other your dc could have teeth problems. I had no problems with nipple confussion. My ds hated bottles so all I did was bf and use a pacifier. I just wouldn't use it all the time because it also effects speech development later on.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    It is very normal for a 3 week old baby to wake frequently at night. I used a pacifier one day for one of my 3 children and never used it again. Why? Because he was about 7 months old and I had a bunch of cookies to make for the holidays. I remember he sat in his high chair, sucking on the binkie, watching me, letting me get my "work" done. At one point I realized we were not having our usual interaction - his looking at me, smiling, cooing, with me smiling and talking back. Yes, I did get most of my cookies baked. But I learned a lesson. You can't see a baby smile when they have a pacifier in their mouth. It made an indelible impression on me. It was as if I had taken away my child's ability to communicate with me. The pacifier allowed me to prolong the time between feedings that day and it interfered with my communication with my baby. I threw it away and never used one again.

    You say you tried swaddling and the pacifier on the same night. I wonder if just swaddling would help your baby have longer periods of sleep. You may want to read about the normal sleep pattern of infants, though. They really aren't designed to sleep through the night in the traditional sense. They need contact with you and they need to feed often in order to thrive.

    Dr James McKenna is a well known authority on the biology of infant sleep. You can learn more about his research at the following sites:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/ba/Feb93.html http://www.nd.edu/~jmckenn1/lab/culturalarticle.html
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/cbi/journal12.05.html
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/sleep.html

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    37

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    Hi...

    Actually my goal is not for her to sleep at night (well that would be nice, but I know that ain't gonna happen)..I would just like her to be less fussy & grunty after feeding her and changing her. I'm sure it's making myself and dh more agitated than our dd is. She just looks so uncomfortable. And, we would like to get some sleep too. The swaddling works somewhat...she manages to always get her hands out of the swaddle and her wailing hands do not help her get to sleep or relax.

    I will ditch the pacifier for now b/c to be honest she really doesn't seem to "enjoy" it. I think it is more for my dh and I than it is for the baby.

    Still curious to hear other experiences...

    Leslie

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    37

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    Thanks for the resources.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    I think Quakerm0mma put it best: If you do decide to use one, be very careful that it doesn't interfere with your breastfeeding relationship or your milk supply.

    Here is an article from LLL about whether or not to use pacis:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBNovDec95p172.html

    Different things work for different mother and baby couples. But also be aware that 3 weeks is a common time for a growth spurt. Many mothers find that their babies want to nurse more frequently or become more wakeful during this time. And during growth spurts, it's very important that your baby be allowed to nurse as much as she wants--this helps your milk supply increase to meet her growing needs!

    HTH
    Jen
    "Mothers are designed to be available to their babies--to help them make the transition into this big, wide world. To teach them to trust, and love, and feel good about being alive."
    --Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq., So I Nursed Him Every 45 Minutes

    Click here to find your local LLL Group
    How to tell if your breastfed baby is getting enough milk!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    181

    Default Re: Pacifier & Breastfeeding

    Hi Leslie,
    Every baby is different, but we've given our dd a pacifier from day one and she never had nipple confusion. She was able to switch from one to the other without an problems. I would always try to breastfeed first though, and if that's not what she wanted, then she just wanted to suck and I would giver her a paci. HTH
    Tracy

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