Updated: Aug 30
A total of 181 mothers (68%) introduced a pacifier before 6 weeks. ... Women who introduced pacifiers tended to breastfeed their infants less frequently and experienced breastfeeding problems consistent with infrequent feeding. (NIH)
Honey, pacifiers should be avoided for the recommended four weeks when beginning your breastfeeding journey, this way you’ve established a good milk supply. ⠀
Personally, I recommend no use of them period for breastfeeding moms until 6 weeks when you’ve met and surpassed most breastfeeding challenges and your baby has hit a growth spurt.
When you use a pacifier you increase the chances of nipple preference. A nipple is like a straw, it takes more work to extract milk. Pacifiers rubbery smooth feel can be an aversion or preference over Moms breast.
With a pacifier you can miss ALL of baby’s feeding/hunger cues before the last cue, CRYING which causes baby to become fussy and upset which can make latching your baby more difficult. ⠀
Moms shouldn’t be dependent upon a pacifier as the only soothing mechanism for baby. Babies can learn to soothe themselves without a pacifier.
Pacifiers can also interrupt skin to skin which is essential for the initiation of breastfeeding. Put baby to breast frequently during the first 6 weeks after birth but no longer than 2 hours between each feeds. This will help to build and maintain your milk supply.
To make more milk it requires nipple stimulation i.e. baby to breast, hand expression, pumping. However, we recommend no pumping before six weeks as well unless mother chooses to exclusively pump or there are medical complications for mother or baby. Why? It can cause an oversupply.
As always, this blog is not meant to be a substitute for a healthcare provider or to overide the care plan of your doctor. Please consult with your doctor before taking any medications or supplements.