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Tuesday, December 13, 2005A new study has been released that shows the use of pacifiers can make it more difficult for mothers to establish successful breastfeeding relationships with their babies. The study was put together by researchers from the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research in conjunction with the Western Australian Centre for Evidence Based Nursing and Midwifery and Curtin University of Technology.
"Given the overwhelming evidence about the benefits of breastfeeding, it is generally advisable that mothers avoid the use of dummies [pacifiers] in order to increase the likelihood that their babies will breastfeed more effectively and for a longer period," said report co-author, Dr Garth Kendall from the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research.
All I have to say is:
Any mother that has experienced the frustration of trying to nurse after their child has been given an artificial nipple could have saved these researches the time and money spent proving this "scientifically."
Breastfeeding isn't easy for mothers OR for babies. It takes work. Pacifiers and the nipples on baby bottles are incredibly easy for babies to latch on to. That means that quite often, once a baby has had a taste of the "easy" nipple, they're not so keen on doing the work anymore to latch on to the real thing. (Even if it has yummy mommy milk in it...) That's why breastfeeding friendly hospitals put signs in baby bassinets that notify hospital staff that a baby is being breastfed. That way the baby doesn't accidentally get slipped a pacifier or a bottle if they end up in the nursery or with nursing staff.
In fact, many pediatrians suggest that a baby not be given a pacifier or a bottle until a breastfeeding relationship has been firmly established.
We avoided pacifiers all together with Elnora, mostly because I didn't want to have to deal with breaking her from them but also because she was always a pretty content baby. When she was very young, I'd give her my pinkie finger to suck on if she was fussy. Always worked just fine for her. By the time she was a few months old, she'd outgrown it. Didn't make a difference for us with breastfeeding though as once we did our first supplementing by bottle (with pumped breast milk) she never would latch again.
Labels: Stats and Studies