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Cot death prevention and dummies

(20 Posts)
l39 Sun 27-Sep-09 09:16:24

I'm 37 weeks with my fifth child and wondering what the official rules are at the moment regarding dummies. My older children are all 8 or over, so obviously things have changed.

What are health visitors saying at the moment? None of my children ever used a dummy and I think they're horrible (I'm not trying to offend anyone and of course if a dummy is the only way to comfort your child you'd use it! But none of mine ever got colic.) but in those days no one thought they were a cot death preventative.

What are these studies that say dummies reduce the risk of cot death, where did they take place, did they involve exclusively breastfed children?

I'm not going to let my dislike of dummies put my child at risk! But I want to avoid a situation where I reluctantly use dummies, wince every time I look at my child with a big hunk of plastic blotting out half of her face, and then when she's 2 or so a new study comes out saying dummies didn't do any good after all!

If you've had a child recently, what did your health visitor say? Is not using a dummy considered as negligent as smoking around a baby or lying her on her tummy to sleep, or is it something they're still in two minds about?

FeatheredHeart Sun 27-Sep-09 10:08:16

I'd never heard about this, so looked up this

Also read somewhere recently that cot death incidence decreases in proportion to the mothers age. No idea why.

FeatheredHeart Sun 27-Sep-09 10:08:53

Sorry - i meant that if the mother's older the incidence of cot death decreases.

warthog Sun 27-Sep-09 12:35:46

i believe dummies prevent cot death because they keep the airways open. i love dummies. better than thumbs imo.

LeonieSoSleepy Sun 27-Sep-09 12:43:43

Message withdrawn

l39 Sun 27-Sep-09 17:51:05

Thanks for answering.

Does anyone else know anything about the studies, though? Perhaps I'm just overly sceptical, but I'll be exclusively breastfeeding anyway, and following all the other advice - if the dummy thing only reduced the risk in babies who had risk factors like low birthweight or stomach sleeping, it wouldn't apply to me.

However it's on both the NHS website

and the FSID website

(my first links, don't know if they'll work)

they must have a good reason, mustn't they? They wouldn't just be going on one American study?

mmrsceptic Sun 27-Sep-09 17:53:39

Dummies are more "socially acceptable" nowadays I think.
They're very tremendous. You can just keep it for night time if you want. Can't you google it? There'll be lots on the dummy cot death thing.

iwantitnow Sun 27-Sep-09 18:20:29

If you are going to BF there is no need for dummies IMO the evidence for the link between dummies and cot death is very flimsy, yes they do seem to give advice based on very little evidence. The SIDs charity is sponsored by a dummy manufacturer I think...

MilaMae Sun 27-Sep-09 18:48:10

There have been studies in several other countries too though-Holland,NZ,US,Norway.

A lot of the evidence re bf is also flimsy,not that scientific so if you're going to discount research for one not sure why you'd blindly except it for something else.

Snowsquonk Sun 27-Sep-09 19:15:14

If you have never used dummies, and don't like the idea of them, then don't use them. The information is quite clear - a baby who has never had a dummy is at no increased risk of SIDS.

It's those babies who usually have a dummy for their sleeps who need to continue to be offered a dummy until around 6 months.

But its flawed research - it was retrospective, going back to those parents who had lost a baby and asking about dummy use. Nice. Would like to know how that got past the ethics board.

BertieBotts Sun 27-Sep-09 19:44:43

Actually I was under the impression the study showed that babies who had a dummy were more likely to die from SIDS on a night which they didn't have a dummy, but having a dummy in itself didn't change the risk. So really they only prevent cot death if the baby has a dummy anyway (if that makes sense?)

If you don't like them I wouldn't use one specially to reduce the risk of cot death. There are lots of other things you can do to reduce the risk which are far more important, ie no smoking in the house, having baby in your room for 6 months, breastfeeding, sleeping on the back, preventing overheating.

welshbyrd Sun 27-Sep-09 19:50:55

im on the C.O.N.I scheme. (CARE OF NEXT INFANT)

I had a cot death, valentines day 2000. My son who died, didnt take a dummy

However, my C.O.N.I co ordinator, did tell me on this baby, that babies who have dummies are less lightly of dying of cot death, than babies who dont use them

However, my new daughter who is 4 months old, does not take a dummy, she is on a aponea monitor, which would alarm if she stopped breathing
Hope this helps, n good luck wiv bump x

welshbyrd Sun 27-Sep-09 19:58:34

awwwwwwwww n meant to say nothing can prevent cot death

Noone has even got true facts, only theory"s about what causes it.

Not even the machine my daughter is on can stop it happening, can only warn me if she stops breathing

And the theory regarding the dummy, my C.O.N.I co-ordinator told me its because, the baby is always sucking the dummy, so if the theory that a cot death happens because a baby forgets to breath engrosed in sleep, then a baby wiv a dummy, does not go into a deep sleep as much as a baby who doesnt, because the baby is sucking its dummy even in its sleep

And if the baby has a dummy in the mouth, the minute a baby doesnt breath, the dummy will drop from its mouth which should startle them into breathing again

mmrsceptic Sun 27-Sep-09 20:04:05

welshbyrd am sorry for your loss wishes for you and daughter x

l39 Sun 27-Sep-09 20:11:45

Thank you Welshbyrd. I didn't know the explanation. I'm so sorry for the loss of your son.

whensmydayoff Mon 28-Sep-09 13:47:16

My DS stopped breathing at 2 weeks old and thankfully we had bought the tommy tipee moniter with the sensor pad included (£100).
The alarm sounded and it took a bit to get him breathing again but we think he had overheated. Heating had came on while we were asleep early evening and he had too many layers on.
The pad is placed under the matress. It works through a very thick matress and basically is very sensitive. If baby doesnt take a breath within 20 seconds it goes off.
It also saves you checking them every five minutes as the moniter has a little light that flashes with every breath. Means you don't miss corrie!
On the dummy front. You can control the dummy. Give it to the baby only at naps and evenings. Take it away before they reach 6 months as beyond this point the baby has a better memory and will take time to wean off. I did this with my DS and there was no iissues when the dummy disappeared.

Snowsquonk Mon 28-Sep-09 14:58:17

Can I just make something really clear - there is NO EVIDENCE that using a dummy will prevent a cot death. What the research showed is a link between those children who usually had a dummy and then not having it - there there is an increased risk.

Things we know reduce the risk of cot death ( and I mean reduce the risk - none of these thinks will prevent a cot death, but they lower the risk)

- not letting the baby overheat
- back to sleep
- not smoking or allowing others to smoke near the baby
- breastfeeding

all this, and more, in the 'reduce the risk of cot death' leaflet from the NHS.

Welshbyrd - I'm so sorry for your loss. But your CONI advisor doesn't have his/her facts right about dummy use - babies who never have a dummy are at no higher risk of SIDS than babies who do.

boundarybabe Mon 28-Sep-09 16:42:26

My son is 7 months and has a dummy but I find he tends to spit it out once he's asleep anyway (and always has done) so I can't see how it makes a difference to him - from what I hear most babies do this once they're in a deep sleep. NB, I would like to get rid of the dummy but what's the best way to go about it? ATM he only really has it for bedtime/naps and in the car when he starts whinging and we're looking for a place to stop!

Welshbyrd, I'm sorry for your loss - it's one of my greatest fears and I wish you well with your DD.

whensmydayoff Mon 28-Sep-09 19:13:12

Oh so sorry welshbyrd. I hadn't read all the posts and missed yours.
I don't think it would have made a blind bit of difference. My son used to go into a deep sleep and the dummy fell out and he had no idea.

PrincessToadstool Mon 28-Sep-09 19:16:30

Wasn't the study funded by MAM?

I felt so angry when I first read it - that no one had told me I could protect my son by using a dummy. But really it is not the case, as everyone is saying. I breastfed on demand and co-slept. So a dummy just didn't have a place for us I suppose. Not that I didn't try during a few screaming-in-the-pram sessions!

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