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Dummy advice/ opinions (for 3.5 mo)

(17 Posts)
CityDweller Fri 22-Jan-16 16:30:30

What are people's thoughts on how best (or best not) to use a dummy?

DS (3.5mo) napping has gone to crap the last couple of weeks. I used to be able to swaddle him and put him in his swing or sometimes just in the crib and he'd nod off, often for 3+ hours. But, with all the brain development and new awareness of the world around him that has come in the last two weeks, his 'off button' seems to have broken. He's now mostly taking rubbish short naps (45 mins or less), needs masses of assistance to get to sleep (vigorous rocking and bum patting or, if really desperate, boob) and is grumpy when he's awake. I know this is par for the course (I've been here before with DD), but even so...

Today has been epically shite - micro naps, and mostly wailing when he's awake. In a moment of desperation this afternoon I tried a dummy. He calmed immediately and was asleep within 10 mins and is still asleep 55 mins later (i.e. we've made it through sleep cycle - hurrah!). But, I'm fearful of another sleep prop I'll need to wean him off in the future and/or I'll end up endlessly having to reinsert it during naps if he starts spitting it out. And will using it for naps mean that he'll end up needing it at night too (he currently mostly settles ok at bedtime)? Should I nip the dummy in the bud before it's even started? Should I be taking it out once he's asleep (but then won't that hinder him getting through a sleep cycle?)? Or should I just be thankful he's finally taking a decent nap?

kbro79 Fri 22-Jan-16 17:12:02

I am very pro dummy and would say if it works go for it. Some babies just need to suck to be able to sleep. I also read on here some describe it as the best 'no cry sleep solution' there is which I thought was v true.

In terms of putting it back in I tend to find if DS falls out it is when he is properly asleep and therefore not needed so hasn't caused to much trouble. And if it does fall out and wake him it's usually at the start and he is not asleep so would need whatever other prop we were using done again also (in our case meant extra rocking ir boob)

waitingforsomething Fri 22-Jan-16 17:45:17

If it's helping him to sleep just use it and don't worry! Sleep is very important in little babies and it's the worst to be dealing with an overtired one all day! you can wean him off a dummy in various ways before he is 1 if you want to.

FATEdestiny Fri 22-Jan-16 21:35:45

He calmed immediately and was asleep within 10 mins and is still asleep 55 mins later

There's your answer

I have never had a problem weaning any of my 3 children off dummies, but did wait until they no longer needed its comfort and security at night.

Yes, there'll be a phase of re-insertion. It will pass when baby can re-insert own dummy. In the mean time, it would be wise to keep cot next to your bed so that re-inserting can be done from your bed and with your eyes closed.

The value in using a dummy for independent sleep is IMMENSE

janethegirl2 Fri 22-Jan-16 21:37:53

I never used dummies for my 2 DC. I just don't like them. Germy things IMO.

WinterBabyof89 Fri 22-Jan-16 21:45:08

Use a dummy if it's helping..

My DS1 loved his dummy - we took it away quite late as it was his security blanket sub (age 3).. Really easy to wean him off by that age.

DS2 (4mos) despises them so no such luck there.

Yay for sleep!!!

CityDweller Fri 22-Jan-16 22:14:56

Great - dummy it is then. smile Although I might hold off using it at night for now.

Expect another post from me in 6 months to 2 years asking how to wean him off it...

SkiptonLass2 Tue 26-Jan-16 19:55:28

How can you get then to take a dummy? Ds just will not keep one in. He's a really sucky baby and I'm sure it'd help... He just chews it and can't seem to keep it in..

FATEdestiny Tue 26-Jan-16 20:33:43

How old is he skipton?

SkiptonLass2 Tue 26-Jan-16 21:26:03

He's 15 weeks, FATE.

I suspect he has some kind of tongue tie (or had) as I found feeding incredibly painful up to ten weeks. We tried everything but one day it just stopped hurting.

He is very sucky- would happily suckle all night if he could.( I find that makes me sore so I don't do it.)

He's doing about five hours on average but has hit the four month thing with a vengeance! This week we've had nine hours (first time ever) eight hours and then the rest has been one or two hours. He's gone from being able to be put down sleepy in the cot to getting very distressed if I put him in basket or cot. I don't want to force the issue so right now I'm feeding to sleep in our bed about 7pm, he'll go down between 7:30-9 (been waking more these last two weeks.) then I transfer to fit when I go to bed. He's fine with being put back in the cot in the middle of the night. My thought is just do what works to ease him through ? He's got a decent bedtime routine but I don't see the point of battling him into the cot when he's happy in bed at first (he's so tiny!)

He slurps the dummy in, rolls. it around but can't seem to hold it in. I've tried gently replacing and sitting half holding it in...

FATEdestiny Tue 26-Jan-16 21:43:30

I figured he must be older - once used to being given toys, they usually just assume that is what a dummy is. If baby hasn't made a sleep association with a dummy, it is not unusual that they are used as a teething ring would be - biting down and chewing to help teeth cut.

My DC1 was 20 weeks when I first gave her a dummy (middle-class nose scrunching at the repulsive idea of a dummy meant I tried to avoid dummy use until then) and to be honest she never fully 'got' her dummy in the way my subsequent children did.

Consistent use at all sleep times (and only sleep times) did develop a sleep association though. Even if the dummy wasn't as effective with her, it did help as a sleep trigger in time. It took fluke really for her playing with it as a toy to result in her trying a suck and realising that feels nice.

How can you get then to take a dummy?

My only child that didn't take a dummy straight away and refused was DC4. She was much younger (started trying a dummy at 3 weeks old, she finally accepted it about 7/8 weeks old) so I am not sure if the same techniques will work.

I tried with the dummy all of the time - every sleep time and after every breastfeed. I used to try whipping nipple out and dummy in. I would try holding her in BF position but with a dummy rather than feeding. I would gently hold it in her mouth when going to sleep. It would just be sitting there in her open mouth, she didn't understand she needed to suck at that age. Tapping the dummy can encourage the sucking reflex.

It just to consistency and effort, rather than giving up on the basis that "my baby refused a dummy". I knew from experience (she was DC4) the value of using a dummy so didn't give up and kept going.

Eventually I think it was just fluke that at some point she sucked, rather than trying to spit it out. Realised sucking it felt night and tried it again. Within a weeks she was sleeping 11pm-7am with only minimal dummy-reinsertions and no full wake ups.

However, as mentioned, my techniques worked with a newborn and may not work with an older baby.

SkiptonLass2 Tue 26-Jan-16 21:52:55

I'll give it a try smile consistent and persistent, right?

I've had a bit of success with replacing the nipple with a finger, which is why I think he'd like a dummy. I have absolutely zero middle class scruples about them - my parenting philosophy is keep it relaxed, do what works and everything is a phase ;) ds is a pretty relaxed and happy little guy but he's definitely needing more sleep, both day and night.

I'd like to get him into daytime napping more - he struggles with it unless he's in the pram, so I thought I'd start just picking a time, going up to bed and settling down with a cuddle and feed in the bed. Once he gets used to roughly routine naps I'll try to move him into the cot - he can't quite roll over yet but I want him to be in the cot when he can!

I'm perhaps overthinking it but I've suffered with sleep issues my whole life and I want ds to be relaxed and happy sleeping

FATEdestiny Tue 26-Jan-16 22:02:20

That all sounds like a very good plan skipton. Good luck!

CityDweller Tue 26-Jan-16 22:34:44

It took me several tries to get DS to take the dummy. First couple of tries he just did what yours Skipton is doing - chewed it a bit or pushed it out his mouth. Then, in desperation, I tried again a few days ago (he's 3.5 mo also). He'd only taken rubbish short naps all day and was beside himself with exhaustion. I held him in the bf position and popped the dummy in and gently held it there. He stopped wailing for a second and started sucking it within a minute or two and is already a total dummy junkie - he loves the bloody thing. Wish I'd persevered earlier as he's never been interested in comfort sucking on the boob (and hence won't/can't feed to sleep really) but was clearly desperate to suck on something as he was always sticking his fists in his mouth and gagging on them.

Pyjamaramadrama Thu 28-Jan-16 11:40:50

My experience of dummies.

Ds1, didn't give him one, he found his thumb at 3 months and sucked his thumb until age 5.

Ds2 have given a dummy, they can be annoying, as FATE says there is a time you'll have to keep reinserting the dummy, I'm not sure ds2 would settle without sucking.

Now he's 7 months and he honestly, genuinely only has it to sleep with. He's saying mama, baba, nana, so contrary to popular belief it isn't hindering his talking.

SkiptonLass2 Thu 28-Jan-16 12:12:33

He just can't seem to keep it in his mouth ... I'll keep persevering

FATEdestiny Thu 28-Jan-16 14:07:47

contrary to popular belief...

Absolutely Pyjamaramadrama. Most of the bad press from dummies come from a small minority of parents who use them inappropriately.

I allowed free use of a dummy for the first 6 months (since baby requires much comfort as a tiny baby and sleeps most of the time anyway) and then from 6-12 months started the process of reducing dummy use.

From 12 months I have a dummy attached by ribbon to DDs sleeping bag and that is the only access she has to her dummy. Forms a very clear sleep trigger since dummy=sleep and dummy doesn't equal anything else.

No one apart from me and DH ever sees my 16 month old with a dummy. The only uses it for the 10 minutes to get to sleep. Once asleep it drops out her mouth and she doesn't use it again (unless she wakes up and reinserts it herself to get back to sleep).

I know a nearly 3 year old who has a dummy all the time. I went to his Aunty's wedding last year, he was just turned 2 and he had a dummy in his mouth all day long - even going down the isle and for all photographs.

That's inappropriate. Even I was silently judgey and I am very pro-dummies.

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