NO to Pacifiers

The use of pacifiers for babies have long been touted as an *easy-way-out* method to calm babies (read: shut them up). I guess that’s why they call it the *dummy*. The usage of pacifiers causes nipple confusion especially in the early stages of breastfeeding, is easily soiled and just yesterday, I was saddened to read the news that it caused a 14-month old baby to choke to death:

Toddler chokes to death on pacifier
JOHOR BARU: A 14-month-old baby boy suffered for almost 90 minutes before dying, after he accidentally swallowed his pacifier at his babysitter’s house.
The victim, whose parents work as factory operators in Singapore, was sent to his babysitter’s house in Taman Johor Jaya here yesterday.
It is learnt that the parents have been sending the baby to the babysitter for more than a year.
Yesterday, the babysitter put the pacifier into the baby’s mouth when she went to prepare his milk at about 10am. When she came back to check on him, she was horrified to see that he had swallowed the pacifier.
She tried to pull it out but it was stuck in the baby’s throat. She rushed him to a nearby clinic but the people there could not extricate it. By the time he was taken to Sultan Ismail Hospital at 11.30am, he was pronounced dead on arrival.

I am glad that we have NEVER once used a pacifier with Ethan. Mom had also never used a pacifier for my brother and I when we were babies. Of course initially it was difficult because when Ethan needed to be calmed down, we had to talk, sing, soothe, rock and nurse by offering “the human pacifier” to him. It has all been worth every bit of the effort as there is no need to break him from the pacifier habit now.

 

February 2007
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