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Thread: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    I have heard that you should not use a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed. Is this true?

    However, I have also read that using pacifiers can help prevent SIDS, so am interested in using one after my baby is born.

    Can anyone offer any guidance in this regard? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Default Re: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    Pacis can also cause nipple confusion, adding a challenge to successful latch-on while bfing. But, it all depends on the individual baby. Mine uses a paci fine, with no nipple confusion, but I make it a point not to use the paci often. My LLL leader recommends giving bfing a good 4-6 weeks--enough time for proper bfing to be well established, however much time that is for you--before introducing any artificial nipple. An alternative for the early weeks is to give LO your pinky finger if you need a break and baby needs to suck. Make sure the nail side of your finger is turned down on baby's tongue so your nail doesn't cut LO's soft upper palate. In the end, it all comes down to you figuring out what works for you and your LO.
    I love my kids. I care for them accordingly. What more can I say?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    If you want to use a paci, you should wait until the latch is good and your supply is solid. Too soon, and you can interfere with a proper latch and building a good supply.

    My first baby got a binky wayyy too early, thanks to my mom I really think that contributed to the 8 weeks of difficult nursing I had with him, along with a bottle he was given in his first few hours of life.

    I planned to not use one with my second child, but after about 6 weeks, we really needed him to comfort suck on something other than my fingers. He won't comfort suck at the breast, but I really needed my hands back. So we found one he would take, but we use it judiciously and try to not substitute parenting for the binky, if that makes sense.

    Here's an article on pacifier use: www.llli.org/NB/NBNovDec95p172.html

    Check out Dr. Sear's Baby Book for more information on reducing SIDS. There's a lot more to it than just giving a binky.
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Re: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    I did not plan to use one before my son was born, but he was given one in the hospital and had no problem nursing. We continue to use it if he needs it and have been fortunate not to have problems with nipple confusion, even with bottles being in the mix.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    We waited several weeks too. I was going back and forth and even asked my ped for her advise (I do not want a 5 yr with a paci in his mouth) and she said that if I took it away at a year, I shouldn't have much of a problem. She said I could let him find his thumb (which he has), but the downside of that would be that I couldn't take it away.

    I needed it mainly for when daddy had him or in the car and those are mainly the times he gets it. Sometimes when he is going to sleep, he will finish eating, but will still want to suck (but not on me) so he gets it then too.

    I have never had a problem with nipple confusion with either the paci or bottles (he had one w/ ebm at 3 wks so I could get some sleep). We make sure that the paci does not replace us as the parents either. I refuse to use it as a plug, but it does have its uses.

    We use the Avent pacifiers. He would not take the ones he received at the hospital. Always spit them back out. The Avent is supposed to be more like the breast (but they almost all claim that).

    Good luck.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Default Re: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    I would also recommend until bfing is well established. I was very sure i didn't want our son to use one, but at about 3 weeks i was in such pain from thrush that i couldn't stand to let him comfort suck, so i introduced the paci. it worked fine for us and now we just use it to go to sleep, some of the time. it actually seems like he's weaning himself off it now so we'll see! So I think the bottom line is be cautious, they can be a good tool if necessary, and while they may reduce the risk of SIDS, if you follow all the other safe sleeping guidelines you would be just fine without one too.

    Anne- Mom to two active boys: Henry 10/06 and Jamie 4/09

    Looking for an LLL leader in your area? click:

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  7. #7

    Default Re: using a pacifier if you plan to breastfeed?

    Hi There

    I'd strongly suggest you look at the link that IansMommy posted. I'd have put it up if she hadn't

    Also, here is LLL's statement on pacifiers and SIDS:
    This article says "Pacifiers, which are recommended in [the AAP] policy statement, are artificial substitutes for what the breast does naturally."

    "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
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