(Closed) breastfeeding and pacifiers

posted 7 years ago in Babies
Post # 3
423 posts
Helper bee

I’ve given Kayla a pacifier from day 1 basically.  She is almost 5 months old and I have exclusively breastfed her, no supplementation with formula at all.  She also has used about 4 or 5 different types of bottles, 3 of them she had no problems with at all.  (The other 1 or 2, the nipples were too skinny and she just fussed trying to take them.)  We’ve given her 1 bottle of expressed milk a day since 2 weeks old.  We’ve only recently been added really small amounts of formula to the bottle to try to maybe do one bottle of formula a day so I can get some extra pumping time in to save up for going back to work eventually.  So in my experience, we’ve had no problems what so ever and she’s growing great!  And, we no longer let Kayla fall asleep by sucking on her pacifier and we hardly use it anymore.

I know everyone probably has very different experiences with this.  Maybe you could just try it for a few days and see if it affects your breastfeeding at all.  If it seems to inhibit anything in your opinion just take it away.  I don’t think a couple days will cause too much damage!  Plus, you are the mom and you know best! 🙂  Our pediatrician told us that the great pacifier debate is really just a parenting decision, no real evidence of “nipple confusion” etc.  But again, everyone says different things! GOOD LUCK!!

Post # 4
2547 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

Maybe she is just still hungry? I mean, they say that babies need to eat for 30 min-an hour each time. I remember I breast fed for about 10 min each boob, because my son preferred to eat little amounts numerous times a day.

I know alot of woman who breastfed entirely with the pacifier, so I don’t know really if it is true that the pacifier interferes. My son took the pacifier for all of about a month, and realized it served no purpose.

Do whats best for the two of you guys, happy baby means happy mama!

Post # 5
2561 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I work as a nurse in the NICU, and I really don’t think that giving a pacifier occasionally, especially since you have established breastfeeding, and after you know she is full is going to cause any harm.

In fact, I have yet to see any convincing evidence that pacifier use interferes with breastfeeding at all.

Post # 6
1892 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

We’ve given DS a pacifier (the ones called GumDrops) basically since day one and he’s exclusively breastfed. He loves to suck and would do the same as your daughter, so we started allowing him to have a paci when he was no longer hungry but still in the need to suck. Some babies are just suckers. He’s 7.5 weeks and sometimes he wants it and sometimes he refuses so I just go with his cue. I asked my pediatrician because I too heard it was bad for breastfeeding but she said that “he already knows by now that milk is not coming out of it and it’s fine to give him”. We haven’t had any problems.

We also introduced a bottle at ~4 weeks and he gets a bottle of expressed milk at least once every 2 days, usually once a day (given by either Darling Husband or my mom, never myself). Sometimes it’s only an once from a bottle, but just enough for him to still have ‘practice’ using one. He goes from breast to bottle and back with no problems besides needed his milk warm…but he also needs everything warm including his wipes 🙂

Post # 7
1645 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

My son is 11 weeks old now. We waited until about 3 weeks to introduce the pacifier. I wanted to make sure that breastfeeding was going well and avoid the dreaded nipple confusion or latch issues. (I’ve yet to meet someone who’s infant had nipple confusion). Our son doesn’t really like the pacifier much. He wouldn’t take it early on, but now will sometimes in the car when he needs to suck to fall asleep. We introduced the bottle at 4 weeks also. We tried a few kinds until he took one, and haven’t had issues since.

The lactation consultants that host weekly breastfeeding meetings (there are 5 that rotate through) all have said that as long as you aren’t having issues breastfeeding, it’s usually fine.

Some babies do just need to suck, and if that’s the case, a pacifier will really help soothe your child and keep you sane.

Post # 8
634 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I would give her a dummy (australian for pacifier). You don’t want her to have to be fed to sleep every time, that leads to BIG issues. I gave DS a dummy at about 2 weeks, and tooke it away from him at 2 months. He was breastfed and never ever had nipple confusion and Boyfriend or Best Friend like a trooper!

We ended up taking the dummy away because I didn’t want him to become so attatched to it and it to cause a problem. Taking the dummy away can cause huge issues in regards to self settling and things like that. It sounds like your LO just needs to learn how to self settle. It just depends what you as her parent wants to do. Even though giving DS a dummy was good at the time I wish we never gave it to him. Just weigh up the pros and cons for YOU.

Also, another idea might be to put some cooled boiled water in a bottle and give that to her when she just wants to fall asleep on you whilst feeding. She will realise that it’s not milk and might get over it after a few times.


Post # 9
2695 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2008

My opinion – and that of our peditrician – is that once BFing is established, it is more than ok to introduce a pacifier – unless you want your breast to be the pacifier 🙂

Post # 10
817 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I had the exact same experience as you with my little guy and he’d latch on and then get so mad because he wasn’t hungry, didn’t wnat milk to come out! From day one we used a combo of bottle feeding, breastfeeding, and pacifier and he never had issues.

Every baby is different. Just do what you think is best. If you find that yours is starting to have an issue with breastfeeding, take the paci away for a few days and comfort nurse instead.

Post # 11
2820 posts
Sugar bee

I’ve been wondering this too.  We introduced bottles of expressed milk at 2 weeks and she’s had no hint of nipple confusion but I’m still hesitant to start the pacifier.  My worry is that she’ll tire herself out sucking on nothing and then miss a feeding but it doesn’t sound like others had that problem.  

Post # 12
5398 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Our son is 2 months old and is exclusively breastfed.  We’ve given him a pacifier since early on because he loves to suck and he can’t have my boob in his mouth 24/7!  What’s funny, though, is he’s actually weaned himself from it now and he prefers to suck on his hand.  Either way, we’ve had no problems with breastfeeding due to his sucking on a pacifier or his hand.

Post # 13
1882 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I nurse DD-I gave her a paci in the hospital the night she was born, and a bottle in the hospital the second day. NOOOO problems at all.

Post # 14
2866 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Baby boy was in the NICU so he was bottle fed formula and then they gave him a pacifier. He started nursing on day 3 and hasn’t really had any problems. So he’s had every experience under the sun.

I like the pacifier for times when he’s not hungry but just cranky (like 30 mins after he’s nursed a good amount) – it helps to get him to sleep, plus I also read the thing about it reducing the risk of SIDS.

Post # 15
801 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

We waited until week 5 to try a pacifier with my son but he did not take one at that time.  It wasn’t until we tried the MAM brand pacifiers during week 8 that he started to accept one sometimes.  We never had issues with latch after introducing bottles/pacifiers and he is still nursing without issue and is 4 months old.  He is still finicky over when he’ll take one (in the car and at daycare is about it) but I think that is more to do with his personality than when we introduced it.

Post # 16
536 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2007

Our pediatric nurse practitioner / lactation consultant told us to wait 40 days- we made it to about 35. I think we could have used it way earlier with no problems. DS has had a couple bottles a day since birth, and that didn’t interfere at all with BFing. DS LOVES the pacifier, and we use it all the time (we’ve only tried two kinds- the Soothies one that they gave us at the hospital, and Nuk ones- he prefers the Nuk ones). I wish we’d started with it earlier- I didn’t feel like we needed it for the first three/four weeks, but about a week before we let him have it he started getting fussy at times when he wasn’t really hungry, and it made a big difference to be able to just stick a pacifier in his mouth.

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