I think many people have a stigma placed around the use of a pacifier or as we call them here in Africa, ‘dummies’. Some reasons behind it that I have heard of are, it can create nipple confusion for baby if on the breast, it can slow the speech down and also make the teeth grow skew.
I personally had the dummy for all three kids who are now 9, 7 and nearly 3 years old. All had no nipple confusion, spoke when they were ready to speak and there teeth are fine! And let me tell you having the dummy was a lifesaver of note when you have a little baby that needs settling in an instant or just to get a decent nights sleep with a niggly newborn when your tired. I do not regret the decision to have given all three kids the dummy.
Remember this is a personal choice for everyone.
So on this post I wanted to share how we transitioned off the dummies for the kids and maybe share some tips for people looking to do the same.
So how did we start and how did it go?
I am not a firm believer in taking baby steps with this. I think as a mom you know when the right time is for your baby/toddler to now stop the dummy. There is no right age neither is there the right solution for every child. My view is when they are ready to start the transition phase off the dummy, they seem to have a sense of understanding, independence and have started to not need the dummy most of the day. It becomes more a habit than what is needed I’d say. I stopped all the kids at around 2 and a half I would say, and I went ‘cold turkey‘.
For me this was going to be the quickest way to stop the habit and yes I think the most challenging in a sense because you will have to throw all the extra’s and spare’s the one you been hiding in your cupboard for an emergency, you can’t go to the store to buy a new one. It will be tears, tantrums, cuddling and constant asking. The emergency is never coming. THIS IS YOUR LIFE NOW FOR THE NEXT FEW DAYS! God speed! lol
So have your reason ready to why there is no more dummy (I told my first two kids the dogs ate them and the last one that it got lost). We walked around and looked for them but we just could not find any. You definitely need a reason and stick to it.
After a few days they did forget about it. And this is what surprised me after every try with all the kids is that with this technique, the kids quickly forgot about it because there minds became occupied with other things like playing, eating, watching tv, going for drives etc..
The nights were a bit of a struggle. I wont lie. But the kids got very tired from a full day of play and trying to resist sleep most of the day because they missed the feeling of the dummy, but eventually they fell asleep without it on their own. Days passed I wouldn’t say more than a week, and the dummy was a thing of the past. Hard work paid off with the niggling kids, tears and sleepless nights but you will make it through no matter what process you take.
This was my way of doing it, I am not telling anyone to follow my steps but I wanted to share my journey and experience with this topic. If you have a tip or trick please comment on my IG page under this post and share it with other moms.