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The best dummy for newborn Australians

The best dummy for newborn Australians: Are they an old tradition?

It’s a question every parent asks themselves: what dummy will be the best dummy for my newborn? Is it an old dying tradition that we give our children a dummy to sooth them or is it an easy made decision that turns into a bad habit that eventually leads to a baby relying on the dummy.

A baby sucking their thumb is not out of the normal. Most babies suck their thumb as it provides a soothing and calming effect for your little one. Right from being born their natural reaction is to suck. That’s why it’s only natural as a parent to put two and two together and use a dummy, because it’s a natural reaction of providing comfort to your bub in downtime.

The best dummy for newborn Australians, Best Baby Australia

What are the benefits of using a dummy / soother / pacifier?

  1. Multiple studies show that using a dummy in the first year of birth decreases the chances of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Although it is still up in question, you can find more information about SIDS.
  2. You can control and coordinate the use of a dummy to you, the parent’s discretion. However you cannot control thumb sucking as it is a part of their body!
  3. Sucking a dummy can relieve pain. For example, if your baby is getting immunized, it will help sooth pain if you are feeding or if he has a dummy.
  4. The breastfeeding to tube bottle adaptation will be easier as your bub is getting adapted to more foreign ways of feeding.
  5. It may help with postnatal depression. For more information on postnatal depression click here.

What are the cons of using a dummy / soother / pacifier?

  1. With overuse, it can be harder for your baby to learn to talk or make sounds. A good idea is to limit dummy use as necessary, like when he/she is trying to sleep.
  2. The more regularly your baby uses the dummy the more likely it is to alter the way he/she’s teeth growth. This can lead to a over or under bite. You may see signs of this if your child sucks vigorously or is still using the dummy past two years of age.
  3. Using a dummy for a prolonged period of time can cause middle ear infections which may conjure bacteria from your child’s mouth into the tubes between his throat and ears.
  4. With regular use of a dummy, it may be harder to control use. Limiting dummy use as necessary is important.
  5. Infants are more susceptible to infection, therefore you need make sure the dummy is constantly sterilized especially during the first 6 months, after 6 months a child is generally more resistant to infections so just washing with water and soap may be viable.

At what part in the child’s growth cycle should I use a dummy?

It is generally recommended that if you are regularly breastfeeding that you should wait until it is well used to breastfeeding which generally is around the 4 week mark. Ultimately, the decision is up to you, the parent. Many parents use them during the first six months and others use them for years on end. Also, the common denominator is parents using them to help them settle to sleep, whether that be a nap or sleeping at night. Other parents may use them to help reduce the chance of SIDS, although there is a big for and against to the issue, more research is required to clarify.

Finding the best dummy for my newborn:The best dummy for newborn Australians, Best Baby Australia

If you have decided to use a dummy, there are many things to consider before buying the best dummy for your newborn:

Ventilation: Make sure that the dummy has at least two holes to prevent suffocation, to prevent the situation of your child having the whole dummy in their mouth and being unable to breathe.

Integrity: Check that the dummy is a sturdy dummy and that no tangible bits are exposed or if it can be easily ripped by your teething little one.

Grip: Ring or handle grip to make sure you can hold it easily and properly.

Types: Orthodontic and Cherry teat. Your traditional cherry teat dummy is the one that we all have seen with the bigger head and inclining walls, where as the orthodontic dummy is catered to be more like breastfeeding.

Materials: Dummies are usually made out of latex and silicone. Silicone are probably the most common, with a silicone teat and either/or a plastic/silicone hilt. Latex ones are generally more softer however they have less of a lifespan.

Strings/cords: Do not use any dummy that has a string or a cord. It could cause harm by strangulation if they tangle it around their neck, or swallow part of the cord.

Be Selective: Be very selective with anything that comes to your child. With dummy’s it’s important that if you are to use one you find the best dummy for your newborn, and the right dummy for your newborn.

Tips:

  1. Limiting and controlling your child when and where to use the dummy. If you use it only to try and assist with sleeping this can be both an adequate and moderate amount that your child does not have any teething, ear infections or general infections. Pre-plan how much you roughly want your child to use the dummy, for example planning up to 4 years as past 4 years old your child will need to develop stronger strategies to cope.
  2. Never humiliate, pressure, harm or intimidate a child to give up using a dummy. This can have greater mental consequences. Make sure you make the best decision as a parent and strategize how to give up the dummy.
  3. Start a diagram that your child can see, to mark your child’s progress. This chart can have colourful stickers on important dates.
  4. Compliment and comfort your child when he or she stops using a dummy. Inform them that they are growing up into a big adult!
  5. Like an adult going through withdrawal symptoms, your child will have symptoms of giving up the dummy. In this time comfort your child and remind them that they’re growing up and help them cope.
  6. If your child asks for the dummy after stopping them, don’t give in. Remind them that they’re grown up now and don’t need the dummy.
  7. Always be really selective when buying the best dummy for your newborn.

* This article is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be providing medical advice and is not a substitute for such advice. The reader should always consult a health care provider concerning any medical condition or treatment plan. Neither bestbaby.com.au nor the author assumes any responsibility or liability with respect to use of any information contained herein.*

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