pacifiers vs. thumb suckers

Melissa - posted on 07/31/2009 ( 23 moms have responded )

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I'm just curious as to how other mothers felt about how their child soothed themselves.

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23 Comments

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Rebecca - posted on 08/01/2009

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It depends partually on your child's preferences but I will point out that my Mom had always discouraged me from allowing my children to use a pacifier. My daughter was 7 when she stopped sucking her fingers and my 16 yr old still sucks his thumb at times. My 10 yr old took the pacifier only to pacifier - not as a plug and stopped using it by 10 month. But if they don't give up a pacifier until they are older at least it they will give it up some people still suck their thumbs even past 18 yrs old.

Melissa - posted on 08/01/2009

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Thanks for everyone's response to my question can't say I agree with everyone entirely however opposing points of view are something to consider. Thank you!!

Lucy - posted on 08/01/2009

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My little girl is nearly 4 months and i hate dmmies with a passion so i've never given her 1. She is BF sp uses me for comfort if she's tired or whatever. She has recently started putting her thumb and fingers in her mouth for a quick chew and suck but this is more of a "Oooh i've got fingers and thumbs" thing than a searching for comfort thing.

Jodi - posted on 08/01/2009

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Both my kids used pacifiers. My son, because he was a thumb sucker, and my daughter because the nurses in the Special Care Nursery advised me to get one to help her very weak sucking reflex, and she ended up addicted, LOL.



I am not a fan of thumb sucking. My brother sucked his thumb, and he actually sucked it until it was raw and bleeding and it got infected badly. My mum always wished she had given him a pacifier when he was young, and first showed signs of sucking his thumb, because by the time he did this it was too late, he wouldn't take one.

Sheila - posted on 07/31/2009

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Let your child soothe himself however he wants. My first born didn't what a pacifier, but loved her thumb. My second takes both but mostly when she is sleepy. My now soon to be 3 yr old sucked her thumb till she was about 2 1/2 yrs. old. At that time my dentist told me that her teeth were starting to pop out so I went to Walgreens and bought a natural liquid called "thum" that you brush onto their thumb twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. It tastes pretty bad so it only took my daughter about 3 days to stop sucking her thumb. It can also be brushed on pacifiers. I personally swear by it and will use it for my second daughter if need be. Good luck!

Cassi - posted on 07/31/2009

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HEY MELISSA! Well, as you know Dylan takes a pacifier. We weren't going to give him one but he was constantly wanting to suck on something and like a few others said, a pacifier is easier to take away than a thumb or fingers. He has figured out the thumb thing now though and takes his pacifier less. I'm not sure how I feel about it because part of me wants to be proud that he can soothe himself, but part of me feels that it will be a very hard habit to break. As far as a mother being a soother by offering breast I think that breastfeeding is a great habit but it isn't always what a baby needs and not every mother has that option. I have been breast feeding Dylan for 7 months now and all of the sudden I am drying up. I tried increasing my supply by feeding more often, but it isn't working and I'm only nursing him twice a day now and he still needs formula after that. I'm not one to judge on that, it's a choice a mother makes, as well as the pacifier is a choice the parents make. However, pacifiers should be taken away while they are younger... Good question Mel!!! TTYL girl!

Kelly - posted on 07/31/2009

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My son started out with a binky and then refused it at around 3 months...then at around 5 months i started noticing him starting to suck his thumb....so i started offering him his binky when i seen him with his thumb in his mouth...i don't really know if it is any "cleaner" sucking a binky than the thumb but i think that it is an easier habit to break when the child is ready.....my sister took her daughters binky away when she turned one and she started sucking her thumb and she is now 7 and still sucks her thumb when she is sleeping, she doesn't suck it to fall asleep but it just "naturally" goes in her mouth when she is sleeping.....so i guess i prefer the binky, but to each there own and each child is different.....

User - posted on 07/31/2009

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almost 8 months my sonn only has it to fall asleep and then spits it out once he has gone down. plus u can take away a bink put cant cut off a thumb

Amy - posted on 07/31/2009

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my oldest son took a paci but, he gave it up when he was 20 months old. I had just had his baby sister and he handed it to me told me it was for babies and never took it back again. My daughter wouldnt take a paci and my youngest only took it for a very short while. I dont recommend letting a child suck its thumb because I was a thumb sucker. My parents could not break my habit and I could not shake it until I was 10. My mouth is scarred for life. On occassion my husband still has to yank it out of my mouth when I am sleeping. I guess old habits really do die hard!!

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My son is 3 and STILL sucks on his index finger, he only did a pacifier for 2 dys & didn't like it? His hands were in his face in the ultrasound, and well...haven't really left! He gets bored & sucks on his finger... tired, finger... you know he's really out when his finger falls out of his mouth :) I think it'd be easier to get rid of the paci, but like Santeiria pointed out, they may then switch to finger :) He also tucks his ear inside itself? Started with his left finger in mouth & right one on right ear, occassionally he switches ears :) Both of the tops of his ears will stick inside the ear hole if he puts it there :) goofiest thing I've ever seen! BTW, my son's hardly EVER been sick, so guess it don't hurt too much :)

Santeiria - posted on 07/31/2009

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I think it different for every child. I did not try a pacifier with either of my children. My daughter sucks on her tongue (yeah crazy huh?) and my son sucks his middle two fingers. Both are breastfed babies but when they are sleepy or fussy that's how they soothe themselves! Mind you I sucked my middle two fingers as a child and my husband sucked his thumb, so I really think its okay for either. It may be easier to rid the habitual sucking on pacifiers but that doesnt mean that after the binkie is gone your baby want find something else to soothe him/her and it may just happen to be a thumb/finger!

Callie - posted on 07/31/2009

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My oldest(5 yrs. now) threw the pacifer at out of his mouth at me at 6 months and I never gave it back. My youngest(7 months now) has to have the binkie because of health issues. I am personally a mother who can't stand to see a 4 year old walking around with a binkie in their mouth.

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My nine month old sucks her pointer and middle fingers palm up! Tried several soothers but she just spit them out. Totally not interested. I sucked my thumb (for an embarrassingly) long time. I wasn't sold on the pacifier thing anyway since I had a lot of trouble breastfeeding, I didn't need anything else that would interfere with that. In the end, I am glad she has found a way to soothe herself. She sleeps great now, all through the night and two naps a day.

Kim - posted on 07/31/2009

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Personally, I can't stand pacifiers. Both of my daughters sucked their fingers. My oldest (she's 11 now) sucked her thumb, and my youngest (she's 6 now) sucked her pointer and middle fingers. My oldest daughter was "broke" at 18 months. I used a product called THUM and within a few days, that was it. My youngest actually liked the taste of THUM and she wasn't as easy to break. Also, with her being my "baby," I let her be a "baby" longer. It was before she went to kindergarten when she quit with the fingers. Fingers are attached and can't get lost in the crib like pacifiers!! :)

Good luck!

Stephanie - posted on 07/31/2009

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Our son had a pacifier. It was fine with us when he was young. Didn't want to make it an ABSOLUTE habit though. So we got rid of em on his 1st bday.

Ashley - posted on 07/31/2009

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my first son loves his soother. he was in the hospital for 2 months so when he was sick he liked his soother for comfort. my 2nd son is only 4 wks old but he doesnt seem to like it. he will very rarely take it so we dont really offer it to him. it'll work out great for me once he's older but i'd much rather them have a soother than suck their thumbs

Samantha - posted on 07/31/2009

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i would have rather my daughter use a pacifier cause u can take that away when u want and u cant take her fingers away.. so i pushed the pacifier so she wouldnt suck her fingers and guess what???? she sucks her 2 middle fingers LOL! (guess this is what its gonna be forever me trying to get her to do something and her doing the opposite HAHAHA) But i think its all up to the kid if they want a pacifier they are gonna do that and if they want their fingers then u cant really stop them.. Ally has gotten to where she only sucks her fingers at night which is good so she is slowly weaning herself off! Fine with me =)

Jaimie - posted on 07/31/2009

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my daughter only gets a binkie when she is sleeping.... and she gives it back to me when shes awake..... shes 14 months old...

Minnie - posted on 07/31/2009

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Neither. It's very rare for a child to suck a thumb or finger in cultures where babies are given frequent and unrestricted access to the breast.

So I am my child's soother. Not her finger or a plastic plug.

Melissa - posted on 07/31/2009

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That's what all moms I know tell me but my own. My little Haden only does it at night.

Ashlee - posted on 07/31/2009

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my daughter wants my to sing to her...she hates her pee pie and she dont do the thumb thing

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