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dummies: pros and cons

(15 Posts)
Ladypug Wed 09-Dec-15 00:15:59

I am pretty clueless on dummies and just wondered what the pros and cons were and people's experiences of using them - do they help with crying and babies struggling to go to sleep? What are the negatives? How long does it take to wean them off? At what stage did you introduce a dummy or take it away? If you didn't use one why not and how have you found it?

FattySantaRobin Wed 09-Dec-15 00:22:24

DS1 used a dummy. I gave it him because he wanted to suck constantly. It didn't stop me from knowing when he was hungry as some people claim as he would suck, realise there was nothing coming out and spit it out. It is a pain waking up just to shove dummy back in though when yheyve dropped it.
He didn't use it often as he got bigger, just when he was being super fussy and he started throwing them out of the pram so when he was 8 months I just didn't bother buying anymore and we never looked back.
DD refused a dummy. Completely refused wouldn't take any dummy at all.
DS2 has a dummy. He also only uses it when super fussy and is usually quite happy without. He's 18 weeks and I plan in eliminating dummy by a year. (Whether that works or not remains to be seen, but that's the plan!)

Peaceloveandpartyrings Wed 09-Dec-15 00:36:40

Was very anti-dummy during pregnancy but had a nervous breakdown when DS was about three weeks old and gave him one, which he adored. He started to lose interest by the time he could take it out by himself (about 8mo) so when I decided to sleep train at 9mo I ditched them at the same time and he had all but forgotten about them after a few days.
Pros for me:
Got him off my boob for a bit, quietened him down and soothed him when I was unable to deal with his needs immediately (ie feed him when we were getting off the bus)
Cons for me:
I don't like the look of them (was always snatching them off him for photos/if someone wanted to coo in his pram), perceived feelings of failure (though this is very personal and of course isn't universally applicable. And I didn't fail, I just picked my battles), had to get up 10x a night to pop the damned thing back in his mouth because he couldn't go back to sleep without it.

I don't regret using one but I am pleased that I managed to ditch it before DS really grew attached to it and understood what it was.

HirplesWithHaggis Wed 09-Dec-15 00:38:34

Ds1 did not want or need a dummy, and I didn't offer.

Ds2 wanted, needed, and got a dummy. By the time he was three, he could accommodate three in his mouth and one in each hand, all at the same time.

He is now 25. He has never had speech problems, and he has the best teeth (without braces/orthodontics) of all of us - even, and white.

Pal's ds was encouraged to use his thumb, and was bf. (Mine ff) Spent teen years in braces to sort them out - you can take away a dummy, you can't remove a thumb.

At the end of the day, do what your dc seems to need atm, or when s/he is actually here. Don't get bogged down in any sort of "parenting philosophy" in advance.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 09-Dec-15 05:41:49

Pros: SIDS prevention and settling (my poor boobs). Can be taken away.

Cons: Possible dental and speech issues. Oh, and snobs.

Ladypug Wed 09-Dec-15 06:06:48

Thanks everyone this is really useful!

Weebeastiebaby Wed 09-Dec-15 09:15:46

I was quite anti-dummy but gave ds one at about 5 days old when it became clear he was a "sucky" baby after hours of cluster feeding and comfort sucking and general fussiness. You can see him relax before your eyes, helps him settle to sleep and he'll suck away contented in the pram for hours if I let him.
Nowadays they are all designed to not be detrimental to teeth development (when used reasonably) and are much less damaging than thumb sucking.
It remains to be seen whether I can wean him off the dummy before he becomes attached but I would keep an open mind if I were you. It was a total lifesaver in the early days of bf. I could actually hug and kiss the person who invented the dummy!!

ShoeJunkie Wed 09-Dec-15 09:22:37

Same as Hirples. DS1 had no interest in a dummy, DS2 is a sucky baby who only settles when he's got a dummy or a boob. Both ebf and DS2 has no difficulty letting me know when he wants to feed as opposed to suck!

Millionprammiles Wed 09-Dec-15 12:30:24

Popping a dummy in is way easier than having to feed, rock or pat back to sleep. Assuming you had to do one at 2am (and 4am, and 5am...) which would you choose?

Noone chooses to use a dummy just for the fun of it. If you have to use it restrict it to sleep/nap times if poss.

JimmyGreavesMoustache Wed 09-Dec-15 12:39:51

i think dummies are great
you can use them for as short a time as you want, and then wean kids off them at a time of your choosing. dd1 had a dummy when unsettled as a young baby. We got rid at a young age so no damage to teeth, and she spoke early and clearly.

dd2 is 5 and has sucked her fingers ever since she was 8 weeks old. She shows no signs of stopping, and has the overbite to prove it. I wish we'd managed to get her interested in a dummy, but she wasn't.

ODog Wed 09-Dec-15 12:47:12

My DS was a very high needs baby and is a fairly high needs toddler and it has helped him sleep and cope with tiredness/car journeys/general upset/overwhelming situations since he was 4 weeks and he still has one when he needs it now at 18mo. As others have said it's also good for SIDS prevention. He doesn't seem behind speech wise compared to non dummy peers and teeth seem ok so far too.

The main downside for me is that it's another thing he whines for, sometimes just if he's a bit bored. That drives me mad! Oh and agree with snobs. DS looks much older than 18mo and some people comment that he is too old for it but they can come deal with him without it if they want .

Peaceloveandpartyrings Wed 09-Dec-15 13:52:08

Following on from 0Dog's last comment, my mother was very snobbish about dummies and told me not to use one because it was "chavvy". I was anxious about what she'd think when we started using one, but then I figured that actually, she's not the one having to deal with DS 24/7 so her opinion counts for nothing.

NickyEds Wed 09-Dec-15 14:12:00

-they settle and soothe babies
-they're cheap (you can put 10 in a cot!!)
-they're available all over (unlike a special blanket/teddy)
-they're easy to clean
-you can take them away (unlike a thumb)
-they're small and portable- it's not like carrying a ewan the Sheep about!
-they aren't your boob so other people can give them to your baby
-they aren't even nearly as damaging to teeth as a thumb

-snobs that aren't your baby's parent
.....erm.....that's it!

southlondonbaby Wed 09-Dec-15 14:35:40

Same here: baby that loves to suck-soothe. Still only 14 weeks but she so obviously CANNOT be soothed by a dummy if she wants boob or just to babble - she spits it out so no chance of confusion. A big pro is that my partner has a strong let down so baby can't suck on boob without getting milk, which is frustrating for her (and partner!) so this gives her a way to suck without feeding.

But yes yes yes to the judging being a big con! Had one person say 'you'll raise a dummy if you use a dummy' oh my face! I told him if he was willing to whip out his nipple and let her suck it to soothe then is listen to him.

museumum Wed 09-Dec-15 14:37:29

I offered one at about 6wks but he wasn't interested. Ended up never taking a bottle either.

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