Not a few parents give pacifiers to babies so that their babies are not fussy and calmer. In fact, the habit of squeezing can have a bad impact on the health of the baby. you know. Therefore, you must know when is the right time to give your little one a pacifier and when to stop.
Babies naturally have the urge to suck or put something in their mouth, even when they are not hungry. This can be seen from the baby's habit of sucking his own fingers or any object that he can reach.
Because of this habit, many babies are given pacifiers by their parents. In addition, pacifiers are also used to make babies calmer and less fussy.
Even so, Mom and Dad need to know what are the benefits and risks that can occur if your little one sucks too often.
Benefits and Impacts of Breastfeeding Habits on Babies
Until now, the use of pacifiers or pacifiers on babies is still reaping the pros and cons, especially regarding the effect on the baby's health. In general, the benefits of ngempeng for are:
- Makes baby feel calmer, comfortable, and less fussy
- Helping babies sleep more easily
- Reduces baby's discomfort in certain situations, for example during immunizations or when he is fussy due to colic
- Reducing the baby's risk of sudden death
- Train babies to learn to swallow and suckle, so they gain weight faster
Even so, the habit of squeezing can also have a bad impact on the baby's health. you know. If the baby is too long and often suckling, he is more at risk of developing the following conditions:
- Difficulty learning to suckle directly from the nipple or nipple confusion, especially if she has been breastfed since she was under 4–6 weeks of age
- More prone to ear infections
- Infections due to use of dirty or unhygienic pacifiers
- Dental problems, such as crooked or uneven teeth
- Addiction to pacifiers
Tips so that your little one doesn't become addicted to sucking
If you decide to give a pacifier to your little one, be sure to choose a good quality pacifier. Mothers can choose a baby pacifier made of silicone, free of bisphenol-A (BPA), easy to clean, and according to the age of the little one.
Also choose a baby pacifier that has a hole on the edge so that air can get in and out. The following are some guidelines for using a pacifier on a baby to make it safer and not make him dependent on a pacifier:
Don't give a pacifier to a baby too early
The earlier your baby is allowed to suckle, the higher the risk of the baby becoming addicted to the pacifier. Therefore, you can start giving your little one a pacifier after he is good at sucking through the nipple or at least when he is over 4-6 weeks old.
Don't use a pacifier as an initial effort to calm the baby
Avoid the habit of giving a pacifier as a "weapon" to calm your little one when he cries. Mothers can try other methods first, such as rocking the little one, giving a massage, or singing a song to calm the little one. You also don't need to give your little one a pacifier when he's not fussy and isn't looking for a pacifier.
Avoid adding sweeteners to the pacifier
Avoid the habit of applying sweetener liquid to the pacifier, such as honey, sugar, or syrup, because it can damage your little one's teeth. In addition, the sweet taste can also make it more dependent and difficult to stop sucking.
When giving a pacifier to your little one, you should not give a pacifier that has a string or chain because there is a risk of choking the baby.
Mothers also need to clean the pacifier often and make sure that the pacifier that will be given to the little one is clean. If the pacifier is dirty, your little one can get a bacterial or viral infection from the pacifier.
Avoid feeding the pacifier with a string or chain to avoid the risk of choking the baby. This is dangerous because it can cause injury to the baby.
How to Train Children to Stop Breastfeeding
Mothers should start to control or reduce the provision of pacifiers when the little one is 6 months old or at least 1 year old. The following are tips for training your little one so that he can stop sucking:
1. Keep the pacifier out of reach of children
You can store the pacifier in a drawer or high place and lock it, so that it is difficult to reach and your little one cannot take it.
2. Limit the time to suckle the child
So that your little one doesn't make sucking a habit, you can schedule your little one's pacing time, for example, only in the morning or at night.
3. Distract your little one from the pacifier
When your little one wants to suckle, try to distract him by inviting him to do other activities, such as singing, playing, joking, or watching television.
When it's time for your little one to sleep and want to suckle, you can distract him by reading a fairy tale or playing a song with a calm rhythm.
4. Give understanding slowly
When your little one is old enough and starts to understand what Mom and Dad are saying, start giving him a simple understanding of why he has to stop sucking. For example, by saying that the habit of sucking is only done by babies and not children their age.
So that ngempeng does not become a habit or dependence for your little one, you can apply the methods above and do it gradually but consistently.
Usually, children will stop pacing when they are 2–4 years old. However, if your little one is having a hard time getting rid of the habit of sucking, even when he is older, you can consult a doctor to get the best solution.