Should I give my baby a dummy?

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Find out the pros and cons of using a dummy to put your baby to sleep.


Letting your baby sleep with a dummy (pacifier/soothers/binkies) brings conflicting results on both sides of the debate.

Many experts advise against giving your baby a dummy to sleep, because of hazards, while some child psychologists say that it could help them sleep by themselves better.

To give a dummy or not?

To be frank, it is really your right as a parent to decide what helps your baby to sleep the best. So whether you choose to give or not give their baby a dummy to help them sleep is your decision. Theoretically there is nothing wrong with letting your baby sleep with a dummy to help, but always keep in mind their safety and the effects of sleeping with a dummy.

Using a dummy to help your baby sleep

Many parents have found lots of benefits of allowing their baby to sleep with a dummy.

1. Babies associate sucking on a dummy with nutrition and safety.

2. It gives them the sense of comfort while they are in that big bed all by themselves.

3. There have also been some studies that show using a dummy to help babies sleep may reduce the chance of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. (Although it remains unclear why).

4. Convenience


If you do give your baby a dummy there are some things to note:

1. Don’t give your baby a dummy in the first month if you’re breastfeeding, as it may interfere with your child’s ability to feed at the boob.

2. Gently withdraw your baby from using a dummy  after six months, by which time the risk of cot death is dramatically reduced.

3. Don’t allow your baby to suck the dummy for more than six hours a day as this is likely to affect your baby’s teeth. Do also use an orthodontic dummy where possible.

4. Don’t put a dummy in your own mouth to ‘clean it’ as mouths are full of bacteria!

5. Dummies trap bacteria and germs easily so do sterilise it daily in a steam steriliser or sterilising solution. Do also throw it away at the first signs of wear.


Go to page two for cons on using a dummy to help baby sleep

Baby Health Baby sleep