8 Frequently Asked Questions About Pacifiers
A pacifier is a useful tool for comforting your baby and satisfying their natural sucking reflex. Are you having a baby soon and don't know yet whether you will offer them a dummy? We've gathered answers to the most frequently asked questions about pacifiers!
What is the difference between a rubber/latex teat and a silicone teat?
A silicone teat feels sturdy and is, therefore, more durable than a latex teat. A rubber teat often feels softer in a baby's mouth, but it is also less wear-resistant than silicone. Some babies react to a latex (rubber) pacifier, while an allergic reaction to silicone rarely happens. So which dummy is best also depends on your baby.
I'm breastfeeding my baby. Can I offer them a dummy?
Sure! Though try to take the following tips into account:
- Wait until your baby is used to drinking from the breast. They must continue to distinguish between your nipple and a pacifier, to avoid nipple confusion*.
- A round teat resembles the shape of a nipple more and is, therefore, more suitable for a breastfed baby.
*Nipple confusion occurs when a baby has forgotten the difference between sucking on a nipple and sucking on a teat. This changes the way they suck during breastfeeding and it could be that they suddenly don't latch on properly anymore.
How many pacifiers do I need?
Usually, you can get by with about 5 pacifiers. Choose a different colour or print for each location. For example, you can use a plain bamboo dummy in the crib, while a pacifier clip with a nice print is fun for when you're out. By always using them in a fixed place, they are less likely to get lost:
- one in the crib,
- one in the living room during the day,
- one to attach to the car seat/pram with a pacifier clip,
- one in the nappy bag,
- and one as a spare.
How do I sterilise a pacifier?
It used to be recommended to sterilise pacifiers and bottles regularly, sometimes even after every use. However, it now appears that it is sufficient to do this only for the first use.
You can sterilise the Elodie dummies by putting them in boiling water for 5 minutes. After that, it is enough to clean them with warm water and a mild detergent.*Just be sure to squeeze the teat after each cleaning or sterilisation to get all the excess water out.
*Unless your baby was born premature or has a weak immune system.
Why should I replace a pacifier every 3 months?
It's not just the size that determines how long you can use a particular pacifier, but also the firmness. A pacifier for a newborn baby up to 3 months is softer than one intended for an older child of 18 months with teeth, for example. A 1-year-old child has stronger jaw muscles, so a firmer teat is required.
Check the teat before each use for cracks or holes. Over time, a teat becomes softer, which could cause it to tear or break. So it is important to keep a close eye on the dummy's shelf life and change it promptly!
How do I attach a pacifier clip?
There are two ways to attach a pacifier clip to a dummy. It depends on the dummy.
- If it only has a ring, put the pacifier chain through it. (A)
- If you have one with a handle, you can easily pull the pacifier chain over it. (B)
Does the form of the teat of the pacifier affect teeth?
No. It is the way a baby sucks that plays a role in dental malformation, not the shape of the pacifier. So it is not the case that children who use a pacifier are more likely to have crooked teeth. Thumb sucking, on the other hand, does have an impact on your child's teeth. Don't let your child use the pacifier for too long either, as the duration of use has a negative impact on the development of the tongue, lip and chewing muscles. This in turn has a bad effect on teeth, speech and language.
So you can just choose the dummy that your child finds most comfortable to suck! And, you use the pacifier wisely, limited and not for too long.
My child is 3 years old and I think it's time to stop using a pacifier. How can I decrease my child's dummy use?
Initially, try to agree on a specific place or times with your child to use a dummy. For example, only at bedtime or only in the buggy.
Then you can choose a specific time in the future when they may use a pacifier for the last time. In some cities, you can find a 'dummy tree', for instance, a tree in which children can hang their dummies on a ribbon and leave them. Your child can also give it to Sinterklaas or send it to Father Christmas.
Still, looking for a cute pacifier or pacifier clip? Whether you want a round, orthodontic, silicone, or rubber teat... Elodie has something for everyone! In addition, Elodie is the first baby brand to bring sustainable bamboo pacifiers to the market. And for each pacifier, you will find loads of matching pacifier clips. Discover the collection here.