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Does your child sleep with a favourite toy?

(20 Posts)
Summerdays2014 Wed 15-Feb-17 14:07:17


At what age did your child start sleeping with a toy? My son is 13 months and I'd like to get rid of the dummy. Replacing it with a soft toy/comforter would be good I think, but as yet he hasn't found a favourite that he always wants. Should I introduced one, or wait for him to pick something? Does it actually work as a dummy alternative? I've not done so so far as I've been a bit worried about him suffocating in the cot (pfb?!)

Thanks all

Anatidae Wed 15-Feb-17 14:11:44

Mine has never taken a dummy (we tried) and never had a favourite soft toy. He's never had any comfort item at all :/

I think some kids just don't. You can certainly try introducing one - I spent months with a bloody soft toy in his hands while breastfeeding but he is just not having any of it. 16 months now and still no interest.

Summerdays2014 Wed 15-Feb-17 14:15:45

Thanks Anatidae. Should have said that my son loves to play with my hair as a comfort thing so I've tried putting a soft blanket on my head (!) to try and encourage him to play with that instead, but he just throws it on the floor!

FATEdestiny Wed 15-Feb-17 14:26:15

DC3 was a hair twiddler, he learnt to twiddle his own hair. He also had a dummy though, so not really helpful.

DC2 has "Ted", a jellycat pig. I put a selection of safe toys into the cot when I moved him into his own room, so about 9 months. My intention wasn't as comforters (he had a dummy) just as company now he wasn't next to me. DS selected and bonded with Ted completely independantly. It took me ages to realise he was attached to
Ted. I hadn't expected it or planned it. Yes was as well as dummy though, not instead of.

DC4 had a dummy plus two snuggle blankie. I thought I was being clever introducing two so I had one spare. But she outsmarted me. She needs both when she goes to bed. So instead of halving my stress of "what if we loose It?", I have doubled the stress because we have two to loose now. <sigh>

These were again introduced as she started sleeping away from me, so from around 9-12 months. But again didn't replace dummy, they were instead of

DC1 had no comforter aside from a dummy.

Orangedaisy Wed 15-Feb-17 14:30:08

DD chose a duck which was mine, thieving monkey when she started nursery at 11 months. I took a selection of small toys in her bag and non of the others cut it when she got upset, apparently. She's nearly 3 now and takes 10(!) soft things to bed but the duck still beats all of them. Not sure when she started taking the duck to bed but certainly wasn't before 1 ish.

Summerdays2014 Wed 15-Feb-17 14:31:59

How long did yours use dummy's for fate? We only use at nap and bed time, but I'm conscious that he's over a year now and he still has one bottle a day (bedtime)

Summerdays2014 Wed 15-Feb-17 14:34:31

Sorry, posted too soon. I'm worried about damaging teeeh and speach development (no words yet) with a dummy (this could be pfb again!)

thenewaveragebear1983 Wed 15-Feb-17 14:47:23

My ds age 4 has a revolting bunny raggy thing which looks well loved now to say the least. Fed up of carting bunny around everywhere, I decided ds2 wouldn't have a comforter. He overruled this and carries round a great big piece of blanket which is equally smelly and disgusting as bunny.

My advice op is, if you go and buy one, buy 2 the same so you can rotate and wash them.

thenewaveragebear1983 Wed 15-Feb-17 14:48:37

Should add, both have had these ^^ since not long after birth, definitely well established by 6 months.

SingingSands Wed 15-Feb-17 14:52:45

Both mine had a comforter which they snugged whilst sucking their thumbs. They started getting attached to their comforters at about 5 months.

As for teeth... DD is 13 now and doesn't need braces; DS is 9, still sucks his thumb if very tired whilst snuggling his toy, and his teeth are also really straight.

Comforters are great but also come with a risk... if you lose it then it really is the end of the world!

vvviola Wed 15-Feb-17 14:55:02

There's also the risk of them choosing something you'd rather they didn't.

DD2's comfort object is my old dressing gown (that I used to wear when I got up to her 5+ times a night for her first 2 years). She cannot sleep without it. You can imagine the fun we have packing for holidays!

NickyEds Wed 15-Feb-17 14:58:32

My ds is 3 and likes to have a teddy but doesn't care which out of a selection it is. Dd is 19 months and is quite attached to a Jelly cat rabbit and very attached to a duck. Called duck.....or 'quack quack' as she says it. Both have a dummy for sleeping though so it's not instead of that, I'm not convinced it works like that!

FATEdestiny Wed 15-Feb-17 15:10:43

How long did yours use dummy's for

I'm probably not the best person to ask. Mine were around 4y. I knew they needed comfort so I wasn't going to deny that until it was no longer needed. As a result stopping the dummy was really easy and no stress to anyone.


There's a marked difference in the language/dental damage dummies do, according to how you use them.

I established very early on that dummy was only for sleep time. So free use of dummy 0-6months (when mostly life is all about sleep), slowly restricting so that by 12 months the only dummy child has access to is perminantly attached to the sleeping bag (with a ribbon I see on).

So when baby get up, gets out of sleeping bag, no more dummy. When it's naptime, "let's go find your dummy" is enough to get toddler running to bed.

I also have developed fairly deep sleepers by the time they are 12m. So dummy is in child's mouth for probably 10 minutes max, then not used again until the next sleep time.

So while 20 minutes a day with dummy in mouth (lunchtime nap and bedtime) is not as perfect at 0 minutes, I don't really think it's going to have any impact on dental development. It's certainly not stopping language development because child never had dummy when awake.

These will be very different outcomes to a child who has a dummy in their mouth almost all day, every day, for several years. I am one of those mums who judges others when I see a toddler with a dummy in their mouth. Especially when playing, like at a toddler group or similar. Yet my toddler (2y6m) has a dummy. It is contradictory but I justify it that no one ever sees my children with a dummy - they only have it when in their cot, asleep.

Summerdays2014 Wed 15-Feb-17 15:13:00

Thanks Fate, that's really interesting.

NickyEds Wed 15-Feb-17 15:20:26

We do similar here FATE, little pot in each dc's bedrooms with dummies in and there they stay. With the exception that dd still j has hers to nap in the buggy.

Anatidae Wed 15-Feb-17 18:45:19

FATE my dh and I were talking about what we would do differently if we ever have another baby. His was 'I'm taking a selection of bloody dummies to the hospital.'

When he was born the anaesthetic wore off during my section so I was a mess and not allowed to see him until they stabilised me. He was given to dh who let him suck and twiddle his fingers as he was desperate for food. Ds now has fingers as a comfort item - won't use his own, has to be mine. I've tried wrapping them in thin fabric over weeks, gloves, everything. He will have none of it!

So next time, dummy at the ready AT BIRTH grin

FATEdestiny Wed 15-Feb-17 19:06:46

Hee hee. I waa exactly the same with my second born.

When my first was born I was a nose-scrunchy judgmental "no child of mine will have a dummy" type. Until I eventually tried a dummy at 20 weeks and the results were... magical!

I took dummies in my maternity bag into the delivery room for my second!

Summerdays2014 Wed 15-Feb-17 19:37:18

Thanks for all your responses. I think I'll hang onto the dummy (yay-wasn't looking forward to that battle) for now, but try and put a few toys in the cot and see if he goes for any. Good suggestions about having more than one if he picks something. I might see if he wants my soft toy from when I was little...

Is it safe to have toys/blankets in the cot at 13 months? So far all he's had is his dummy and been in his sleeping bag as I've been a bit paranoid! He wiggles his way upto the top of the cot and gets his head stuck at the moment!

skankingpiglet Wed 15-Feb-17 22:45:59

Yeah cuddle toys are fine in the cot/bed once over a year old. The same for duvets and pillows. DD1 got a toddler pillow at around 13mo as she kept scrunching up her soft toys and stuffing them under her head at night. She formed an attachment to a particular soft toy (her choice) around 9mo but I didn't let her sleep with it until she was a year. She had a dummy too, and as above by 1yo it was limited to sleep times only. We finally got rid just before Xmas at 2.5yo using the dummy fairy: she was ready and it went really smoothly. No issues with teeth or speech as a result. She now sleeps in a single bed and has a good 20 or so toys in with her (half at the foot of the bed, half at the pillow) which must all be present and correct before bed. Of those 4 are particular favourites which get to share her pillow. I'm always amazing she can sleep surrounded by such clutter TBH.

DD2 is nearly 8mo and has a couple of cuddlies in with her already that are attached to the top rail of the cot (the kind that have a hanging ring for use on pushchair etc). She's still in with us though and the size and shape of the toys, coupled with them being attached, mean she'd struggle to smother herself with them even if she was trying intentionally. No preference shown as yet to a particular toy. She has a dummy too.

OP if your DS does end up with a chosen favourite, make sure you go out and buy 4 or 5 at least one spare ASAP, and keep them in rotation so they're equally worn.

Anatidae Fri 17-Feb-17 10:16:53

Ha! No we had no opinion on dummies really, slightly clueless first time mum who was resolved to just do whatever worked ;) it never occurred to me to even try until he was few weeks old...but Ds just will not have one no matter what (I suspect now he was mildly tongue tied and lip tied.)

Dc2, should we ever produce it, will be introduced to mr. Dummy on day one 😂

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