Parting from the Pacifier

Posted on July 20, 2015
Some babies begin sucking on fingers or thumbs as early as the womb. The sucking reflex is natural, and a pacifier may help to soothe and comfort a cranky baby. Your little one should begin to lose interest in the pacifier on her own between the ages of 2 to 4. If the attachment is strong, however, you may require an intervention plan. Here are three tips to help you wean the little one from her beloved binky for good:
  1. Anticipate the need. Does your child frequently seek the pacifier when he’s tired? Perhaps, just before falling asleep in the car? When you know the triggers, you can offer substitutes at just the right moments. A favorite stuffed toy to snuggle with, a fun game, or even some extra affection from mom or dad may be just the distraction.
  2. Get creative. Parents today are getting creative when it comes to saying goodbye to the binky. Get rid of the pacifier cold turkey with a send-off party, or place it in the donation pile along with other baby toys your child has outgrown. According to Everyday Family, the Binky Fairy is just as popular as Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny these days. Why not enlist the Binky Fairy’s help to trade the pacifier in for something better?
  3. Countdown. The Mouth Monsters offers a great countdown game for gradual weaning: Over the course of three to four weeks, tell your little one that the binky will be shrinking. Cut a small hole at the top of the pacifier the first week, and gradually cut a portion of the pacifier off each week until she can no longer use it.