Pacifiers are a great source of comfort for babies, and an absolute blessing for any parent who has ever found themselves in need of a quick solution to their baby’s fussing. But they can’t stick around forever, and taking them away can be a hard milestone for your little one to accept.
In today’s video, I have some tips to help you decide when the time is right to ditch the dummy, as well as some clever strategies for minimizing the amount of protest and sorrow on the part of your little one.
You’ve all seen it, you’ve been in the mall or the grocery store and you’ve seen that child where you’re thinking to yourself hmm, he’s too big for a soother or a pacifier. Right, we all make these little judgements even thought we’re you know trying to be supportive and it might even be you, you’re the one with a child that you know it’s too big for that pacifier. So I wanna talk today about some tips and strategies for getting rid of the pacifier.
Now I believe that pacifiers often cause interference with the consolidation of nighttime sleep so I tend to be a little more pushy with getting rid of them earlier because of that reason. I mean that’s what I’m doing here people I’m all about teaching children how to have glorious beautiful nighttime sleep and so if anything’s getting in the way of that I’m getting rid of it, absolutely I am.
And even if your child doesn’t wake you up they are having wake ups in the night full wake-ups in the night where they have to find that pacifier and get it back into their mouth and that’s a fragmented night, that’s a broken night. Yes we all have naturally occurring wake-ups in the night but they should be so brief that you don’t even have awareness around them you think you slept great through the night that’s what I want for every child so if anything’s in the way I’m getting rid of it.
But what if, you know what you miss the memo on that and you got a child where you’re thinking it’s time let’s get rid of this thing. Great, then let’s do it.
Now there’s a few different ways you can do it I’m the kind of mom I’m the let’s just rip that band aid right off fast, get this over with and so if it were me I would just gather them all up one day and throw them out, and they’re gone, they’re gone.
Now I want to share with you some good news almost always you the parent are way more attached to this pacifier than the child is and that might shock you but it’s the truth. When I tell parents to get rid of a pacifier their face goes white, they get super nervous they might even start to sweat but it takes a day or two, it’s gone, it’s over, it’s not that big of a deal to the child you’re just making it one, okay?
So if you’ve decided, hey just go for it. She may ask for it there might be even a little bit of tears now and then right throughout the day but within a couple of days she’d have completely forgotten that she ever even used one. So to get through that little hurtle distraction is the best form of defense. If she starts asking for her pacifier or her soother whatever she calls it oh it’s time for snack let’s go have a snack, or oh my goodness let’s go and call grandma or oh let’s go and take the laundry out. Just distract her from the idea. Children are very easy to distract and then again it’s out of sight out of mind and off she goes.
Now there’s a couple of other ways if you wanna do this a little more gently or a little more fun, you can have what we would call the pacifier fairy come. So the pacifier fairy came and she took all of your pacifiers but she left you this wonderful gift, whatever it is. That can be a way to spin it positively.
I’m not in love with the idea of giving it away to a baby you know if you’ve got a baby in the house or you know someone who had a baby I don’t really like to get the toddler involved in giving the pacifiers to the baby because toddlers have this sort of love-hate relationship with growing up they wanna be big boys they wanna be big girls but they’re also still babies in lots of ways and so they might even actually like the idea of giving the pacifiers to the baby but somewhere in the near future they’re gonna have some regret around that and they’re gonna wish that they hadn’t and they might start saying you know I’m the baby, I want those back, so I would steer away from that approach.
But I think the bottom line is you ultimately make the decisions here, you’ve decided it’s time to say goodbye to these pacifiers and so you have to stand behind that and know that it is okay if she’s a little bit upset for a few days because it’s not there. If it’s used for sleep there might be a little bit of you know sleep regression or some protest at bedtime because she doesn’t have her pacy but this blows over really quickly and you’ll wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.
Thanks so much for watching. Sleep well.
If your baby, infant or toddler is having trouble sleeping through the night, help is just a click away! The Sleep Sense Program has helped over 57,00 parents to get their kids sleeping 11-12 hours through the night AND taking long, restful naps during the day. If you’re ready to get started today – I’m looking forward to helping you!