How old is TOO old for a pacifier........

Nicole - posted on 07/27/2010 ( 80 moms have responded )

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My son is 2 1/2 and still uses a pacificer. He mainly uses it to sleep and to comfort himself when he is upset/ angry. My daycare provider is pushing to get rid of it. We are also potty training too. I don't want to push too much on my boy all at once. Oh....and we are having a new baby in about 10 days too.



So...how old is too old for a child to use a pacifier and what is the best way to take it away?

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Carmen - posted on 08/01/2010

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My daughter is the same age and her dentist said she had pacifier teeth. BUT, he said not to get rid of it till she is about 3 so she doesnt start sucking her thumb. He said when she stops her teeth will naturally go back to where they are supposed to be.

[deleted account]

I dunno about some of some statements in that last comment. I think a 2 year old is still quite a baby. A talking walking baby, but still very baby-ish coping wise. And pacifiers certainly help some children to cope. Fortunately 2 year olds are mostly oblivous to unkind mocking.

Ashley - posted on 07/31/2010

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I recently took my daughter (16 months) to the dentist to find out if the rumor of a binky messing up theyre teeth, is actually true and to find out the best time to take it.
She told me that as soon as ALL of theyre teeth come in you should gradually start taking it from them. She said it certainly helps with the teething while they are cutting in, but after theyre teeth have pushed through, the binky does start to put pressure on the teeth causing them to push together.
Personally I think you should take his binky before the next baby that way he gets used to going without it, and just try to teach him that a binky is for a baby, so when your newborn comes home with its binky he will see that it is for a baby and not him, the BIG brother.

Lyndsay - posted on 07/31/2010

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Personally, I think after a year is too old. The best way to get rid of it is to go cold turkey, but your child is a bit older and has had more time to get attached to it so you may have a few days of battle ahead of you. Try replacing it with another comfort object, like a blankie or a new toy.

Sally - posted on 07/29/2010

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By the age 3, your child should be weaned from the paci. I wouldn't take it away while he's getting used to a new baby in the home. Expect him to "act out" a lot during the first 6 months, even acting like a baby. That's normal. But by the age of 3, he should understand that he's a "big boy" now and that the paci fairy is going to come take his paci to give to a new baby who doesn't have one.

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Donna - posted on 08/03/2010

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Well obviously every one has a different opinion. I say just do it when you are ready. Sure there might be a little bit of a fight or trantrum, but everyone will survive. I took my daughter's away when she was 2 years, 5 months. We did the sending them to the paci-fairy to give to babies that needed them. We "mailed" them to her, and she left a present in return. My daughter cried for about 10 minutes a little while later when she figured out they weren't coming back. But she has been fine since and has not resorted to thumb sucking. So each child will respond to it differently. She has been paci-free for 3 months.

Annel - posted on 08/03/2010

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Geez - it sounds like I wrote this message. My son is also 2 1/2, busy potty training, we're expecting our new baby in about 5 weeks PLUS we just moved into a new house. I have got the same question. He only uses his dummy when he sleeps or if he is really upset or not feeling well. I'm quite agenst a dummy at this age, but am feeling that as long as he doesn't use it in the day it should be fine. I also don't know how to take it away without upsetting things too much. Maybe the timing isn't right. They say when you want to instill anything you should do it for 3 consecutive days - no matter what - don't give in. I don't know... as I say - I'm with you on this question!

Kim - posted on 08/03/2010

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Every child is unique. Don't rush getting rid of it if thats his only soothing means as you'll stress him out- just try and restrict it to sleep times and when stressed (e.g falls and is crying). Try not to allow him to talk with it. The braces story is nonsense too- both mine used dummies and at 12 and 10 very straight teeth. If your son is a sensitive child then his dummy is Nb - don't let peer pressure rule you - I've never seen an 18 year old with a dummy but i have seen some very stressed out 3 and 4 year olds that did not knwo how to comfort themselves. Go with your heart.

Donna - posted on 08/02/2010

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My daughter was over three and only used it at night. The night before her fourth birthday is when she had decided to get rid of it. We talked about it three or four months before her birthday so she was ready. Most of my friends thought I was crazy for letting her have it that long. She is twelve now and I have no regrets, it was her way of dealing and coping with things also. I say you do what is right for you and your son and don't worry about what other people think. He may not have his as long as my daughter did but with all that's going on in his life right now, I would not take it away. Good luck.

User - posted on 08/02/2010

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well u would want to try n get them off as soon as posible does he still take a bottle or no

Dorlainacoil - posted on 08/02/2010

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my oldest needed it for comfort during stressful times and to sleep--she finally broke the habit when she turned 4--my son and my last daughter gave it up at around 3.My youngest still does the sucking motion when sleepy. Each child is different and is ready to give up the binky at different times. As far as the comment about the kids making fun of others--that is something I ALWAYS stomp in the bud--there is NEVER an acceptable reason to tease--I would just tell the child that does not need the binky that some kids need the extra comfort a binky may bring to them and that just because they don't need one anymore it is okay for others to have them. You are the best judge at what is best for your child. There is not a majic age for things to have to happen.

User - posted on 08/02/2010

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I TOOK MY SON OFF THE PACIFICER WHEN HE WAS 7 MONTHS, IN MY OPINOIN I THINK THAT YOU SHOULDNT HAVE A PACIFIER WHEN YOUR WALKING, AND AT TWO AND A HALF IM ASSUMING HES WALKING. THE BEST WAY TO TAKE IT FROM HIM IS TO GIVE HIM SOMETHING ELSE THAT COMFORTS HIM. PACIFIERS ARE GOOD WHEN THEY ARE LITTLE TO SOOTHE THEM TO SLEEP AND TEACH THEM HOW TO SUCK, BUT AS FAR AS YOU SON, YOU SHOULD TAKE THEM ALL FROM HIM AND WHEN HE ASKS WHERE THEY ARE TELL HIM THEY ARE ALL GONE, FIND HIM A TEDDY BEAR OR A BLANKET THAT HE CAN USE IN ORDER TO TAKE HIS MIND OFF OF IT. I HOPE THIS HELPS, GOODLUCK, BTW I USED A PACIFIER UNTIL I WAS FOUR YEARS OLD SO DONT FEEL LIKE YOUR DOING SOMETHING WRONG.

Sharan - posted on 08/02/2010

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I would not take it away yet with everything thats going on at the moment, sometimes taking them away too early can cause more problem.
My 2 nieces had there pacifiers taken away at 2 1/2 and were not at all ready even with the dummy fairy story and replacing with a present and giving the dummies to new babies they resorted to thumb sucking which their parents hate even more than pacifiers as its even harder to stop than sucking a dummy.

One of them is 6 now and still sucks her thumb and the 4 year old still misses her dummy and has a quick suck of my little boys one as soon as she is round here.

Charlene - posted on 08/01/2010

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JUST hide the stupid thing and tell them you cant find it. be prepared for a few tantrums sometimes........Do Not make the mistake wit the new child the best thing is not to give them one in the first place.
Great grand ma

Jan - posted on 08/01/2010

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My 2 kids had pacifiers up to about 1 !/2 and my 3rd child didn't even have one. It is good for a child to have one but if he can do without that is even better. They keep the child quiet yes but if he doesn't need it and is fine without it then i wouldn't worry too much about it.

Mary - posted on 07/31/2010

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my son gave up day time use of his dodo at about one and now it is only used as a comforter at bed time, i wouldnt suggest giving the dodo to the new baby as this could cause jelousy, your baby is allready going to have to share his mommy and daddy!! my son is going to give his dodo to santa clause when we post his christmas letter in return for an extra special surprise

LINDA - posted on 07/31/2010

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i work for a pediatric dentist and our suggestion is to try and get them off the pacifier as soon as possible. However, if he is not ready he may develop other harmful habits i.e. thumbsucking, bedwetting etc.. They can develop an open bite which would be the worst dental problem but, the sooner they quit the sooner the palate can move back into normal position with tongue and lip pressure. Suggestion....he is old enough to learn that if he wants his binky he can use it at naptime and bedtime. My grandson put them in a basket and gave them to the pacifier fairy and hung them in a tree. Hence, they were gone in the morning. He sounds like he is being a big boy not to use it in the store and other public places so I wouldn't worry to much right now. You have a lot on your plate and this isn't really a big deal.

Tamie - posted on 07/31/2010

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WOW!!!! Its nice to know that ppl would go to those lenghs to make there child up to fast....
& to take away the paci b4 or after the other baby comes thats going to be very tramic for them already. Its like u have to put urself in there shoes & kinda be on there level. Ur going from being with mommy all the time to having to share her with this new thing( thats what there thinkin) it could cause him to revert back to baby things... I have 4 kids from 14-4 and there 2 1/2 yr to 3 yrs apart. so its kinda tough... I would pray bout it and see what ur heart says then go from there....
I hope this helped a lil.. Congrats on the new one and good luck on the paci thing...

Tiffany - posted on 07/31/2010

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well i tok my sons pacifier away from him at around 4 months so he wouldnt get attached cuz this is nothing more taky than a 5 year old who needs his pacifier i would give him a blanky that he likes and let him cry himself to sleep and i know it sounds tough but they will never learn if you dont and it will mess up his teeth so i would do that and like i did take the pacifier away from ur newborn around 4 months and give him or her a teething ring instead

Nathalie - posted on 07/31/2010

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When they start looking silly with it,we waited for the garbage guys to come and let them throw it the back of the wagon saying i dont need this now im a big girl now and it worked,which any way you choose all the best.

Kate - posted on 07/30/2010

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Hi Aliesha,

I think you'd be pushing it to get successful potty training at only just 1 year of age. But you could get a potty ready and start talking about it, and read picture story books about going to the potty etc. If you child is starting to tell you they need their nappy changed they should be ready to start thinking about the potty. If you wait until they are ready then you are more likely to have success. If you try and push it too quickly then it just won't happen and will cause you and your child stress.

good luck!

Aliesha - posted on 07/30/2010

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is it easy to get them to use a potty and at what age? because i have a daughter who turned one on the 24th of july this year

Kate - posted on 07/30/2010

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I think that age is less relevant than 'readiness'. I agree with the others who say there is too much going on now and perhaps you are expecting too much. Dummy and toilet training at the same time is a big deal, especially with a baby on the way.
I had a dummy till I was 4 and I remember my mum cutting the top off and beign very distressed. I wouldn't do that to my own child. My step daughter had it until 6 because her mother would not be firm with her, at our house (every weekend) she stopped with it by 5, we used the dummy fairy strategy, and never needed it again.

I think if you are firm, and say, you don't need it anymore, then it will only take a few days. You just have to be consistent and firm, and be prepared to put up with tears and trantruming for a while. But it is a really important lesson for your child to learn. When mum and dad say no... they mean it.

But you need to decide when your child is ready and when you are ready to go through that battle. don't worry about what other people think, and their strong opinions about what is right and wrong, that is judgemental and unfair. As long as they are not using it when they talk, and don't have it hanging out of their mouth all the time, there is no reason why you can't wait until it is going to suit you guys.

good luck with it all.

Becca - posted on 07/30/2010

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my son is 2and a half and he still has a dummy he only uses it wen hes tired or upset but he has done everything like grow up to fast and we are pottie training him to id let him have it abit longer hes still little and yer it does kinda get in the way of him talking but i tell my son to take his dummy out wen he wants to talk i get told of alot of people to take it off him but he is ur child if ur not ready to take it off him then dont we are trying just to give it him at night at the moment and we take 1 out with us with out him knowing just in case he gets to restless and hes tired but amin of haveing it he spits it out anyway i have noticed if he doesnt see it he will not ask for it untill hes tired my goal i to try and get him off it b4 he starts nursary but dnt rush him alot is happining in his life at the moment but good luck with it and congrats on the new baby xxx

[deleted account]

I didnt use them with my kids so I'm by no means an expert but I say the daycare shouldn't be telling you what to do with your son, you are the expert on him and how he will cope- who cares what other people think- it's none of their buisness.

Stifler's - posted on 07/29/2010

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I meant like emphasise that he is the big brother/a big boy now and doesn't need a dummy anymore.

Yolanda - posted on 07/29/2010

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Wow! I can't believe there wasn't more ideas on how to get the pacifier away. So here is a few for when you and your son is ready. I have always been told COLD TURKEY. From not buying in new ones and say it's broke and we can't get anymore. Cut them up and say no more. ( I thought that was kinda rude but a friend did that and it worked) Having one bronzed and told the child you can always have it now but it is only to look at. I personally just told my son he lost it in his bed and now it's all gone. And we can't get a new one becuz it wouldn't be like the old. It worked for him but he wasn't very attached. Good luck! and Congrats on new baby.

Melanie - posted on 07/29/2010

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as long as u dont allow the child to speak with their dummy in their mouth it wont effect their speach! we always told our son to take it out before he spoke (its rude to talk with ur mouth full anyway)

SUSAN - posted on 07/29/2010

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3 it should be gone. I had 4 boys all dependent on the pacifier..No one had it after 2 1/2. Take it away and stick to it ...by 2 days its done

Danielle - posted on 07/29/2010

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Oh my doctor told me that babies feel the need to suck until they are 6 months old and after that it's more for the parents than the baby. With that said, my 15 month old still gets his soother at sleep time. But that's it. It never leaves his crib other than to get washed.

Danielle - posted on 07/29/2010

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If they're trying to talk with a soother in their mouth then they are too old. In my opinion anyways.

Patty - posted on 07/29/2010

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I was lucky my kids never used them but before going to the dentist you will have to get rid of it.

Momof1 - posted on 07/29/2010

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I was told 3 or 4 months is when you should stop, because that is when babies aren't attached enough to realize you are getting rid of it. My son never took one and I'm glad I don't have to go through the weaning process.

[deleted account]

I plan to get rid of our sons dummys when he's about 18 months, 2 years old at the latest. Dummys affect speech development and at the age of 2 there are plenty of other ways for them to find comfort. With Logan we're going to go cold turkey. He's 8 months old now and hardly ever uses his dummy now.



Having said that this is going to be a stressful time with the new arrival without the stress of losing a dummy and potty training at the same time. I'd continue with the potty training and delay taking away the dummy for now.

Stifler's - posted on 07/29/2010

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Maybe being a big brother might encourage him to get rid of the dummy and toilet train though.

Melanie - posted on 07/29/2010

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my son had his until he was 3.5...at about 2.5 we (him & I) decided he only needed it for bed time & it wasnt to leave his bedroom or id throw it out! he kept it in his room & gradually as each 1 got a hole in it (we had about 10!) HE threw them in the bin (he refused to suck it once it went flat) eventually he was down to the last 1 & it wasnt long before he tossed that 1 too.
he asked me to go buy a new 1 that night & i said "no it was your own choice to throw it in the bin" he hasnt asked since, is now 10 has no teeth problems & unlike my neice whoose dummy got swapped with a prez from santa when she was 18mths DIDNT START SUCKING HIS THUMB!!
YOU KNOW YOUR CHILD...WAIT TIL HE'S READY & IT WILL BE FINE :)

Rhiannon - posted on 07/29/2010

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If he is only using it to sleep and to clam himself i would leave him alone for now. it only becomes an issue when the child permenantly has it in their mouth and won't even take it out to talk which having worked in a nursery i can say is a regular occurence.

It sounds like he doesn't use it to much and with the stress of a new baby its not worth the fight of making him give it up. You never know if the new baby use's a dummy he might decided that he is too old for it and give it up himself x

Lindsay - posted on 07/29/2010

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My daughter is 2 and I have NO plans on breaking her of her pacifier until SHE is done with it. I won't let her talk to me with it in her mouth and really she keeps them in her bed. If we go out and about she takes one with her but she doesn't have it in her mouth all the time. I had them til I was 10 or 12. My mom kept trying to throw them away and I think that's why I hung on to them. My teeth are fine and I have no issues because of it. My advice is don't sweat the small stuff =) you know your child will out grow them eventually.

Analisa - posted on 07/29/2010

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When my son was two I could not get the pacifier away from him but I know I needed to because it was doing more damage to his teeth than anything else. I watched Super Nanny on night and learned to cut a whole in the top of it and when they don't get the same feel and suction they tend not to want it anymore. I cut a whole in my son's own and every time he was bad I cut it more and eventually he threw it away in the trash and never asked for it again.

Gabrielle - posted on 07/29/2010

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You could always get him to give it to his new baby sibling :) Doing that usually helps it be easier!

Casey - posted on 07/28/2010

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At 2 1/2 a child can understand and rationalize the concept that the paci is no longer appropriate. He may throw a fit, but that's part of the 2 year old personality. There will always be a reason not to stop bad behavior, but it is your responsibility as a mom to 'be the mom' 2 1/2 is much too old for a pacifier. At this age, children can comfort them selves in other ways. If this is an issue, this could be a concern you may want to bring up your pediatric Dr. A tantrum would be an expected response, but if your son can not comfort him self with say a teddy bear or soft blanket, this would be a good time to introduce time outs for inappropriate behavior.

Jacqueline - posted on 07/28/2010

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I read the Baby 911 book and it comforted me by saying rest assure your child will not end up going to KG with a pacifier or sleeping in their baby bed still. It took a lot of pressure off of my mind. My son is 2 years old and also only uses the binky for sleep however I do not let him take it out of his room and explain it is only for sleepy time.

Vanessa - posted on 07/28/2010

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My boys decided when they were done with the paci. My oldest had it the longest he had it til about 7 months and he stopped taking it. My youngest was about 4 months and he stopped taking it. So sometimes they need a push and sometimes they decide on thier own.

Alicia - posted on 07/28/2010

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I was on a pacifier until I was actually 5 lol, but if its what he uses to comfort himself then, i would let him keep it for a while longer! Especially with a new baby as well! A new baby potty training and trying to ween him off the pacifier will only make things much more hectic for all of you! Good luck with the babies and have fun! lol

Joanna - posted on 07/28/2010

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I am in a somewhat similar situation. My daughter is almost 3 and uses her pacifier only while sleeping. She is potty trained as far as peeing go but we are still working on potty training poop wise, which she refuses to do in the potty. And she starts preschool in September. And on top of that, we are due with a baby in October. For those reasons alone we are not pushing to get rid of the pacifier yet. It's always been her comfort object (no loveys at all ever), so I'd feel like an awful person to take it away during an uncomfortable time (potty training, starting school, new baby).

Kathy - posted on 07/28/2010

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First off I'll tell you I have no experience in getting rid of a soother. My daughter is 10mo and she uses hers mostly at nap time and in the car, or if she's upset (usually if she's standing up and falls landing too hard) to help sooth her. We do have plans that once she's a year first its weaning off the bottle then we're going to get rid of the sucky. We are talking about having another in the near future, and I think if I had another on the way and she was old enough to understand I'd try to use that to get her off it.

Also, to the mom that teaches her kids to laugh and point at kids with a soother, thats not just rude, but really how could any mother teach their kids to pick on other kids? I would never condone that behaviour and if a child did that to my daughter and I found out their mother taught them that I'd be having words with the mother PDQ

Shonna - posted on 07/28/2010

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i thank its time to take it away what i did was tell my child that a princess wants to come by and get all of your memes and take them to another little girl and if you go get all of them out of the toy box and the other places they may be and put them in this bag and hang them in the tree when you get up there will be a gift for you for being a big girl and it worked so tell your son the same store but for a boy and see what happens but if u do this make sure u keep one just in case.

Jeanna - posted on 07/28/2010

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I say a year old at the most? I have been lucky my daughter never used one.. Also potty training around 2 as well.. Wow and a new baby?! this little boy has a lot of his plate.. but it needs to be done lol steps

Katie - posted on 07/28/2010

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My MIL had my fiance's pacifier on the counter with some peanutbutter on it and said that the cat went poop on it so it wasn't good anymore. He didn't have one since..lol
We went through SO MANY pacifiers with my daughter because our cats would chew them up. After a while we just stopped buying them and she didn't really care. I would take it away slowly...maybe even ask him if that can be his present to the new baby...have him wrap it up as a present and everything. Good luck with everything!!

Fran - posted on 07/28/2010

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Oh, so many opinions. You are the mom, you know your child, you know how much he can handle. My son, bit through his pacifier when he was about 2 1/2. I just stopped replacing them. By that age, he knew when something was broken, and therefore garbage. I let him make the choice to throw it out. I too hate seeing "older" kids (3-5) with pacifiers when they are out in the mall, etc, and they either talk through them or take them out to talk, but everyone needs something to sooth themselves, and it is hard as a parent, especially one expecting another child, to take that comfort away from a child.

I would suggest that you relax, once the new baby arrives, you will see how much stress that puts on your son, and you can decide what is best. Your daycare provider has a vested interest in your son being potty trained, it becomes easier when they are not in diapers (at least eventually lol!). Once the new baby is on a schedule and your son sees that the "baby" uses a pacifier, he will probably choose to get rid of it. He is only 2 1/2, why do we want to have our kids grow up so fast!

Wanda Renee - posted on 07/28/2010

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when my kids were little my oldest throwed his down and i hid it from him and he never really asked for it back but the best way to take it from him is when he is asleep he will spit it out hid where he cant find it but be careful cause he will try to take the new babies away from him or her he is at the correct age to get off of the pacificer but it going to be hard since you are going to have another baby but try this give something in the place of the pacificer and see if that will help

Jenny - posted on 07/27/2010

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i have two kids my son went of his at nine months as he got sick and never looked for it again my daughter is two and eight months and i took it off her at two , and she used it day and night always had it stuck in her mouth it took four days and she forgot all about it was the best thing i ever did she sleeps better than ever not looking for it during the night i think we have the bigger problem taking it off them we feel like they are growing up way to fast.

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