Pacifier use by a 3 yr old

Bridget - posted on 05/11/2009 ( 41 moms have responded )

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Does anyone think I'm crazy ('cuz I do) for letting my 3 yr old still use his pacifier when he goes to bed? We stopped using it at naps (which means no more naps-this sucks) and ONLY use it at night.



I'm looking for reassurance that this is still o.k. or I'm looking for advise on when/how I should go through the hell it's going to be to stop cold turkey. In advance, THX

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[deleted account]

I don't think you are crazy at all!! We had the same problem. My 3 year old was obsessed with his 'ducky". He insisted on having 2, 1 to hold and one to suck. We were at a loose end trying to get him over his obsession and the one thing I can't stand is seeing older kids with dummys. Eventually we won the battle though. We worked him up for about 6 months, telling him that when you are 3 Santa takes your dummys and give them to the baby elves in the North Pole. He will swap your dummys for some special presents. We wrote santa a letter and santa sent one back reminding him that now that he is 3, it is time to swap his dummys for big boy toys! We bought a special box and collected all the dummys and put them in the christmas tree for santa to take.We reminded him regularly what would happen. He did ask why the santas in the shops didn't just go and buy the elves dummys instead of taking the kids since they are at the shops anyway, so we told him that they were just santas helpers and that the real santa doesn't have time to go to the shops as he is too busy delivering presents to all the kids. He was happy with that! On christmas ever he decided to change his mind but we reminded him that he had already told santa and santa would be expecting them. He reluctantly left them and didn't look back, although he still trys to find things to suck on when going to bed. He has found a few dummys around the house which we have sent off to santa. He did take longer to go to sleep and to be honest nearly 6 months later he still doesn't sleep as well as he did when he had his dummy!

It is such a massive thing to get rid of the dummy. I never realised how hard it would be!!! My little girl won't take a dummy so after all the effort of getting rid of my sons, I guess I am glad!! But I'm sure there will be another obsession to take its place!

Good luck, be strong and don't give in, things will get better and you will eventually get rid of it!

April - posted on 05/15/2009

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Good Job Christine! You gave us all hope :) I'm happy to hear your success story as I am fighting the same battle. My son is 2 and a half and he uses his pacifier at nap/bedtime. When he wakes up in the morning, he spits it out and puts it in his bed. We tried poking holes in it, but it didn't phase him. I know the best way is to just take it away cold turkey (whether in a ceremonial way or not) and suffer through it with him for a week or so. WE CAN DO IT!

On another note: no one is arguing that pacifiers can have bad side effects on teeth. All mothers know deep down that keeping a paci for too long isn't the best thing... that is not the discussion here, the discussion is how to stop the pacifier...so your comments about how horrible they can be are both insensitive and something we all know already, you are not shedding any light onto the subject. I'm sure you've asked questions looking for support and answers, that is what Bridget is looking for here so she doesn't feel alone in her struggle... we can all relate to that, right?!

Jessica - posted on 08/06/2010

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in reply to:
I don't want to sound harsh BUT as a parent of a 3 year old myself this is one of my biggest pet peeves is the pacifier. I don't like seeing toddlers running around with a pacifier stuck in their mouth. My son had one only on one occasion and it was the day he was born b/c he couldn't suck and it was the only thing he could suck on and he hasn't had one since then. I had to stress to the nurses in the nursery NOT to give him one. I was blessed b/c he wanted nothing to do with it b/c he didn't want anything in his mouth where nothing came out of it. I thank GOD every day that we chose not to give him one (ONE LESS BATTLE)

While it is difficult to take a paci away from a child when the time comes, there are also many benefits. I was against it my whole pregnancy as well, but then I researched it and found one of the biggest arguments for pacifiers is it reduces SIDS. Many studies show it.

So, to all the moms out there that are pro-paci, I'm sure you agree that we will go through a week, month, or year of screaming, if it means we reduce the risk of losing our precious babies.

Rmenda - posted on 05/16/2009

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my daughter is 23 months and I tried cutting the tip, taking it away.. But we have it resigned to bed use ONLY. When she gets out of bed of a morning she brings the paci to me to put away. My parenting books say they will give it up at school age. My best friend's daughter kept her's until the night before starting K and announced she was a big girl and put in trash and never asked for it again.

Rebecca - posted on 05/12/2009

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i lost sleep with the dread of taking away my daughters dugger as she called it! she was two when i did it and like you had onnly been havin at night. what i did was when i put her to bed i would tell her that i had left it downstiars and then made her wait five or ten mins before bringing it up to her. i did this for three nights gradually making teh time that she waited slightly longer. on the third night i went up to give it to her she had falled asleep waitng! she didnt ask for it for the next week and i didnt mention it. when she did ask i just had a little giggle and told her that i had thrown it aaway she just accepted this. good luck

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Natalie - posted on 09/11/2012

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Sorry I'm new to this and I was responding to one of the comments, not to Bridget. I was gonna say to her, I am going through the same thing. He's 3 and 1/2. I'm gonna it But I cried today thinking about. I'm only doing it now because I finally realize it won't get easier. However, there is no way I could have done it at 2. Not with him. He wouldn't have understood. I might have well just starved Him. Emotionally he was not ready. He is understanding the Santa story ( he need them for the new babies, along with his Christmas list). I also cut the tip off and acted surprised. I told him how strong and big he was to break his paci with his teeth. When he smiled, I knew I was onto something. I'm ready for the week. But no, I don't think there is anything WRONG with it. And I certainly understand the benefits.

Natalie - posted on 09/11/2012

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You did not choose to not give him one as much as your son chose not to take to it. That is different. You cannot pat yourself on the back for that. And how exactly does it hurt YOU if a 3 or 4 year old does have one. It should not be judged. Every child is different. It's moms like you I try to avoid.

Amanda - posted on 08/07/2010

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Hi there! I agree with Jessica, I don't wanna seem mean to people but I just can not stand to see a child that is 2 or 3 years or older to have a pacifer in their mouth. Same goes with me for a bottle..Which my girls never took a pacifier I wouldn't let them have it.. Pacifier are very bad for children's teeth it can cause their teeth to be crooked...

Laurie - posted on 05/21/2009

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My daughter also used her "binkie" until she was almost 3. We moved into a new house last August and I was pregnant and on bed rest. I waited until about 2 months after I had the baby and then for about 5 days I told her the binkie fairy would come one night and take her binkie and leave her a present. I actually ended up taking away the binkie after she fell asleep one night and then she and I went on a special shopping trip together and bought her something special. It was kids gardening tools that she wanted so she could plant flowers. She asked once or twice about the binkie, but she knew the binkie fairy took it. It was much harder on me than it was on her. Do what you think will work for you and do it. It's like jumping into a cold pool! Good luck!

Sanet - posted on 05/21/2009

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Hi! I am also thinking of taking my girl's pacifier away. She is 2 now, and I think it is about time. She also only uses it at bed time. Just for all the moms critisizing on the teeth subject above. Maybe you read the article, maybe you didn't. It's an article that was in a baby magazine about a monther who took away her boy's pacifier at 10 months. Then he started to suck on his index finger. I wish I could post the picture here so that you can see how that boy's teeth turned out!!!! Much, much worse than any pacifier can ever do! Their dental cost are allready at R 40 000.00 to correct his severe overbite. With her second child she deciced to keep the pacifier until a later stage. She specificlly used Nuk (which I am using also) Her daughter used her pacifier up until 4 years of age, and if you look at the photo, you will see her teeth are absolutly fine! Not crooked at all!!!



Personally, I don't like kiddies at age 4 running around with pacifiers. So that is why I am going to take my little girls' away now. But that is MY personal choice, and I don't think anybody should critisize any other mom on their personal choices.



You can go to the Nuk Website. The story is on there. It also says how traumatic it is to take your baby's soother away too early. The boy's name is Mik (Mikhail).



Here is a small part from the article:



"This leaves the lottery of the finger or thumb (and possibly similar problems to the one we experienced with Mik) or the dummy. The NUK dummy was designed by a professor and a doctor – both in orthodontics – in answer to a call by the German government for a solution to rapidly increasing jaw development problems, experienced post World War 2. The solution was the NUK orthodontic shape. NUK is short for Natuerlich und Kiefergerecht, loosely translated as “natural and correct for the jaw”. The NUK dummy essentially exercises the jaw, in the correct way, between feeds. It is as simple as that. If only I’d known this when Mik was a baby!



When Olivia turned 2 we started to limit daytime dummy use and she quickly learned that her “nummy” was only for sleep time. She eventually gave it up when she turned 4, declaring dummies were for babies.



So many parents simply don’t understand the trauma caused by trying to take away the “blankie” or dummy too early. Your child will make that decision at the appropriate time (Olivia proved that to us)."



There you go. Don't force it!

Traci - posted on 05/20/2009

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That is one of my pet peeves-toddlers with pacifiers, but at least your child only uses it at night, so that's good. For future reference, I took my kids pacifiers away once they turned one. The longer you wait, the harder it gets! You just gotta throw it away, and deal with the bedtime hardships for a few days, and it'll get better.



Be glad that its a pacifier, though. At least that you can take away. My first two kids, used them, but my last daughter never would, she's a thumbsucker. How do you take that away? I'm so afraid she'll be going into Kindergarten with that thing in her mouth. She just turned one and whenever I see that thumb in her mouth, I pluck it right out of there. She laughs. I know this is gonna be a struggle!

Kelly - posted on 05/20/2009

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First of all you are not crazy. I totally understand how difficult it can be to take your child off the pacifier cold turkey. But by 3 years old it is definitely time to wean him COMPLETELY off.
I tried several different methods, but this one was by far the best and most painless. Simply cut the tip off of the pacifier - just take some scissors and snip off the tip of the pacifier's nipple. He will still try to use initially, but it will feel so awkward to him and he will eventually stop wanting it. It only took my son a few days to wean off of it using this method. Just hang in there and don't give in! It might be hard at first but it will be OK. Good luck and keep me posted on his progress. I have confidence that you can do it :-)

Amanda - posted on 05/19/2009

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By the way, we thought it was gonna be awful, because he was soooo addicted, but he fussed for like 10 mins and that was it! We were so shocked and excited!

Amanda - posted on 05/19/2009

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We had the same problem. My son was 3 years and 8 months at christmas and we told him for a couple months that the night before he got lots of presents we were going to leave all of his pacis out for santa to take and leave for other children who don't have pacis. And that really worked until..... we had a second little boy and now he tries to steal his pacis and hides them in his room, but it really worked for us.

Kelsey - posted on 05/19/2009

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I was trying to get my daughter off the pacifier for a while and just kept giving it back to her then one day we were visiting friends and their dog chewed up her binky, and they came to the house a couple weeks later and the dog chewed up her only other binky.....so me and my fiance decided not to go out and buy another one.....just went cold turkey.....and the first week will be hell...but after that its great!! and u should start soon......pacifiers mess up kids teeth as they get older!

Keisha - posted on 05/18/2009

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Yes, it is definitely time to take the pacifier away for good. He definitely will throw a fit, probably a little more so now because he is a bit older, however he will get over it. The best advice I have for you is to be patient and let it ride. Dont give in and give it back to him. To make it even easier for you, your best bet would be to throw them all in the trash and take the trash out of the house. It will be hard, but you can do it. He will be fine in no time. You never know he may be able to get over it quicker than you think.

Nadia - posted on 05/18/2009

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well this is worse.. my 4 yr old uses one.....i took it away and she got so angry she scratched me and threw a chair....knocked things off a table, kicked the dog....i dont know what to do.....

Kelly - posted on 05/18/2009

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My daughter turned 3 in April and she still uses a pacifier to sleep. My husband is military so he is gone a lot, and we are almost done potty training. I can't see throwing too many changes at her at one time. Plus she just went to the dentist and they said just to get rid of it sooner rather than later. I figure once the weather warms up (I am in New England so its still cold here) that she will be outside playing and sooooo tired that hopefully we can just get rid of it and she won't care :) Good luck!

Kay - posted on 05/18/2009

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we got my son to give them up by telling him his little brother needed them now because he's 2 old for them and he happily gave them up cause he now thinks he's a big boy 4 doin it

Leslie - posted on 05/18/2009

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I feel your pain, my daughter is 2 1/2 and still uses her at bedtime and sometimes at nap. I have tried just about everything to help her get rid of it. My family and friends say not to worry she will grow out of it. Your not the only one with this problem. If I find a "cure" I will let you know.

Erica - posted on 05/16/2009

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It is definitely time to stop with the pacifier. It will be frustrating and it might make you lose your patience a little, but you have to hang in there. Luckily, my oldest son stopped on his own before he was 6 months old. He took his pacifier out of his mouth as soon as we gave it to him and threw it across the room. That was our que that he was done with it for good. My youngest son took a little longer, but eventually he stopped somewhere between 7 to 10 months old. It is much harder to stop the older they get.

Lisa - posted on 05/16/2009

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We would always have a nukkie in our pockets, diaper bag, car seat, pretty much if we went anywhere we always had 2 or 3 nukkies!! When my son was 2 1/2 he would have one in his mouth, bite it with his teeth and pull it out. One day he did this he dropped it, so I gave him another one so I could go wash it the one he dropped off. When I washed it I cut the WHOLE tip off. When he dropped the 2nd one, I gave him the 1st one back and cut the 2nd one off. When he got the nukkie he said "oh-oh". I told him that he bit it off and we would have to throw it in the garbage. He threw it away and asked for the 2nd one. He tried it and went and threw it in the garbage. That night he asked for nukkie, I told him that he bit them off and we had to throw them. He cried himself to sleep that night and he never asked for them again. :)

My daughter now is a thumb sucker and I wish she would have gone for the nukkie...

GOOD LUCK!

Katie - posted on 05/16/2009

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Quoting Jamie:

My sister left my niece's binkies out with Santa's cookies. They decided "together" that they should leave them for Santa to take to other babies who needed them. It worked like a charm!



I have another idea that is sorta the same. A coworker of mine had her grandaughter tie it to a helium balloon and send it to heaven for any babies that may be up there. Kinda like a going away ceremony for the binkie...you could flip it to whatever reason you have for sending up towards the sky. Whatever your preference may be it worked for her and made her feel like a big girl for helping someone else out.

Ruth - posted on 05/16/2009

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i had the same problem & worry that you do my son turned 3 in Feb. i knew it was time but didn't want sleepless nights so i didn't bother with it but i didn't buy a new binky either the binky he had was an old one & it caused him to have a fungus in his mouth & i didn't know it he started running a fever 102 & at night 103 still using his binky took him to Dr. the said it was just a virus i went through this for 2 months he'd seem to get well then his fever would spike again i tokk him to the dr 5 times & they said the same thing finally the 5 time they gave me a low dose of med. i think to make me happy but that evening he wouldn't take his binky said his teeth hurt & his fever went to 103 by the time we got up in the morning you couldn't see his teeth his gums were swollen over them & he was screaming in pain there was puss coming out from the teeth took him back to dr & that's when i was told it was a fungus cause by old binky took 2 weeks to go away & because his mouth was so swore he didn't want it & hasn't asked for it since so if your not ready to break him make sure you have a new clean binky i never knew some thing like this could happen

Marie - posted on 05/16/2009

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my son turned 3 in march and still has his but only to sleep at night also...ive tried putting him to bed with out and he just screams ..ive also tried saying he will have treats if he goes with out but his dummy seems more important than treats

Kattiie - posted on 05/15/2009

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ya know pacifiers can ruin their teath even their adult teath even though they haven't cam in yet. My sister in law used a paifier untill she was 3 in a half and her teath are all sorts of messed up. and will have to be fixed after her adult teeth come in

Christine - posted on 05/15/2009

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i actually cut the tip off of his tonight, i guess i was feeling brave. he went to put it in his mouth and took it right now and kept saying uh-oh. i told his it was broken and we had to throw it out. we waved goodbye to it and in the garbage it went! he cried for about 2 mins if that when i layed him down. now i can hear him snoring in bed just fine and peacefully!

Christie - posted on 05/15/2009

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As soon as I saw this question, I just had to read it. I too, have a three year old that still uses a binkie for nap/bed time. I've been debating about asking the question, but have been afraid of what other mother's would say, that they would critize. I've been thinking, but we're about to move into our new house, and am not sure how he is going to take it, so taking about his binkie right now isn't the best time. I was thinking about the binkie fairy, but am not sure if that will work. I was also thinking about putting a pin hole in it and see if he'll still use it. But whatever you choose, I wish you luck!

Christine - posted on 05/15/2009

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my son also uses his for nap and bedtime. he just turned too and ive been thinking a lot lately that maybe its time to get rid of it. my sister in law told me that she would cut the tip shorter and shorter until they couldnt suck it anymore and they didnt want it. im thinking of trying that and hopefully it works. good luck!

Brittany - posted on 05/13/2009

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My baby girl isn't there yet, but she too only uses the pacifier at sleep times. A friend of mine, with three older girls, said all she had to do was let her kids use the pacifier, but they HAD TO BE laying down in bed. She made sure there was nothing to play with or anything so all they could do in there was sleep and suck. She said after a few days of them hearing her playing when they weren't, they just left the pacifier behind. I'd love to know if it works because my girl is almost there! Good luck with whatever you decide to do!!

[deleted account]

Quoting Jessica:

I don't want to sound harsh BUT as a parent of a 3 year old myself this is one of my biggest pet peeves is the pacifier. I don't like seeing toddlers running around with a pacifier stuck in their mouth. My son had one only on one occasion and it was the day he was born b/c he couldn't suck and it was the only thing he could suck on and he hasn't had one since then. I had to stress to the nurses in the nursery NOT to give him one. I was blessed b/c he wanted nothing to do with it b/c he didn't want anything in his mouth where nothing came out of it. I thank GOD every day that we chose not to give him one (ONE LESS BATTLE)


 









 





Oh yay, another mom deciding to criticize a mom that is struggling.  How is your comment supposed to help this mom at all?!?!?



I thought is was very brave to ask for help on this issue.  Too many questions are scrutinized and criticized by other moms that are so insecure about their own parenting that they need to pick on other moms to make them feel better about their own inadequacies.



 









 





OK, now that i got that out...a friend of mine decided to use a "soother fairy" to help take the bobo away from baby.  Their daughter was just over 3 when they tried this.  Similar to the tooth ferry, they had their little girl go around the house with a little bag that they collected all the soothers in.  When they were done they told the story of the ferry how she needed the soothers for all the new babies, and that tonight was the night that she would be coming to pick up the bag.  In return she would leave a treat.  The next morning the bag was gone and there was a toy and a note thanking the girl for sharing all her soothers with the new babies.  They told me that their daughter asked for it maybe once or twice after that, but when they reminded her about the fairy and other babies, she stopped asking.



I thought it was a great idea and it seemed to work.  Good luck with whatever you decide to do even if it's keeping it ;)



 



Jessica

[deleted account]

Quoting Jessica:

I don't want to sound harsh BUT as a parent of a 3 year old myself this is one of my biggest pet peeves is the pacifier. I don't like seeing toddlers running around with a pacifier stuck in their mouth. My son had one only on one occasion and it was the day he was born b/c he couldn't suck and it was the only thing he could suck on and he hasn't had one since then. I had to stress to the nurses in the nursery NOT to give him one. I was blessed b/c he wanted nothing to do with it b/c he didn't want anything in his mouth where nothing came out of it. I thank GOD every day that we chose not to give him one (ONE LESS BATTLE)


 









Oh yay, another mom deciding to criticize a mom that is struggling.  How is your comment supposed to help this mom at all?!?!?



I thought is was very brave to ask for help on this issue.  Too many questions are scrutinized and criticized by other moms that are so insecure about their own parenting that they need to pick on other moms to make them feel better about their own inadequacies.



 









OK, now that i got that out...a friend of mine decided to use a "soother fairy" to help take the bobo away from baby.  Their daughter was just over 3 when they tried this.  Similar to the tooth ferry, they had their little girl go around the house with a little bag that they collected all the soothers in.  When they were done they told the story of the ferry how she needed the soothers for all the new babies, and that tonight was the night that she would be coming to pick up the bag.  In return she would leave a treat.  The next morning the bag was gone and there was a toy and a note thanking the girl for sharing all her soothers with the new babies.  They told me that their daughter asked for it maybe once or twice after that, but when they reminded her about the fairy and other babies, she stopped asking.



I thought it was a great idea and it seemed to work.  Good luck with whatever you decide to do even if it's keeping it ;)



 



Jessica

Jamie - posted on 05/11/2009

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My sister left my niece's binkies out with Santa's cookies. They decided "together" that they should leave them for Santa to take to other babies who needed them. It worked like a charm!

Charmaine - posted on 05/11/2009

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Thats up to you. If you don't mind him having messed up teeth, then go right ahead. When my son turned 1 we threw them all away and he never noticed the difference. And when my daughter turns 1 in Nov we're gonna do the same thing with her.

Kate - posted on 05/11/2009

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my daughter will be 3 in august and she still uses a paci at nap/bedtime. i think that we *should* take it away...we just haven't yet. i am currently pregnant again (due in september). we will be moving my daughter to a larger bedroom and she is getting a "big girl" room this summer, so my plan is to take it away when we move her to the other room and just tell her that her paci had to stay with her other bed and other room. don't know if it will work, but we're going to give it a try.



i don't like the idea of telling the child that they need to give it to their younger sibbling because i think that could lead to resentment...but thats just me.

Jen - posted on 05/11/2009

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Quoting Jessica:

I don't want to sound harsh BUT as a parent of a 3 year old myself this is one of my biggest pet peeves is the pacifier. I don't like seeing toddlers running around with a pacifier stuck in their mouth. My son had one only on one occasion and it was the day he was born b/c he couldn't suck and it was the only thing he could suck on and he hasn't had one since then. I had to stress to the nurses in the nursery NOT to give him one. I was blessed b/c he wanted nothing to do with it b/c he didn't want anything in his mouth where nothing came out of it. I thank GOD every day that we chose not to give him one (ONE LESS BATTLE)


My daughter spit hers out at 6 weeks and didn't want it ever again. I was glad so that I didn't have to worry about weaning her from yet another thing. The only experience I have with older child pacifier use is my friend's kids who have both just stopped it. I hope my future kids also decide to spit it out early lol.

Jessica - posted on 05/11/2009

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I don't want to sound harsh BUT as a parent of a 3 year old myself this is one of my biggest pet peeves is the pacifier. I don't like seeing toddlers running around with a pacifier stuck in their mouth. My son had one only on one occasion and it was the day he was born b/c he couldn't suck and it was the only thing he could suck on and he hasn't had one since then. I had to stress to the nurses in the nursery NOT to give him one. I was blessed b/c he wanted nothing to do with it b/c he didn't want anything in his mouth where nothing came out of it. I thank GOD every day that we chose not to give him one (ONE LESS BATTLE)

Jen - posted on 05/11/2009

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My friend's just got rid of the pacifier from their almost 3 year old. He finally had bit through all of them and they told him they weren't buying any more and he finally stopped asking. I kept him overnight last week and he didn't even ask for it before bed (I was impressed after trying to help get rid of it for soooo long) he just went to sleep. I know we had tried to tell him that the "par" (that's what he called it) took all the "pars" and would leave him a present later. He didn't buy it. Another friend of mine's grandmother told her daughter that the lizards got it and that was the end of the "foo-foo." Find a story that works for your little one and stick to it. Once it's gone don't give it back. Good luck.

MariLynn - posted on 05/11/2009

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I just pulled the plug (literally) one night. You have to prepare yourself for a week of hell, but after that it is done and over with. Also, store up all the patience you can, because you will need it.

Kathleen - posted on 05/11/2009

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I think sleep is more important than the pacifier. Don't let it effect his naps. It sucks for you but it's taking an even harder toll on him.

Julie - posted on 05/11/2009

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Well my daughter is 2 and fully addicted to her "bopple." We spoke to her doctor several times and at first they were telling us that she would eventually give it up. Yeah right! Now they are telling us to have a ceremony and just throw them all away. And once they are gone, they're gone. There's no going back. Doc said it would most likely be more emotional for us parents than our daughter. We will see.....

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