How & when to ditch the dummy

Updated: Nov 9, 2019

Dummies are the best & worst baby gadget ever created.

Best because you have finally done the mad dash to Kmart for some last minute essentials because well mum there you are with baby in the pram juggling 1000 items (because we all know we can't walk out of kmart with just one thing) and then there it is baby starts giving you the i'm about to scream the loudest i possibly can face and then within seconds everyone in Kmart is staring at you because your baby is screaming at the top of their lungs!!!

Out comes the dummy and BAM....Silence!!! Everyone is happy.

It seems like the perfect mute button BUT.... yep there is a BUT it doesn't always work so easily. Rewind to bringing baby home from the hospital and mummy friends suggest that you whip that dummy out to avoid dummy rejection later is upset so you pop it in, baby falls to sleep and everyone is happy.....3 minutes later dummy falls out and baby is crying again. No problem just pop it back in & silence Yippee.....2 minutes later baby is screaming again well you get the point!

This cycle continues until baby becomes more efficient in keeping that dummy in or until you end up clipping it to their clothes to keep it near. Once baby has mastered keeping it in they become dependent on it.... so a bit more clarity on this when little one's are dependent on anything external like bottle, breast, dummy or motion to fall to sleep they are more likely to wake through the night. What happens is for each sleep cycle they need that thing to happen in order to fall back to sleep. Fast forward to 3-6 month old baby who has a dummy but can't find and replace a common solution I often hear is the "Dummy Confetti" method, where parents sprinkle 5000 dummies all over the cot in the hope that baby can find one and plug it back in....Problem solved.

The issue with this is that baby is still not getting consolidated long stretches of deep sleep that they need to grow & develop. To give your little one quality sleep our recommendation is to remove the dummy either on or before 5 months as they are yet to create a sleep associations at this age or if over this age we then recommend keeping it until around age 3 the reason being is its now a full blown sleep association and to remove it earlier than this age is not nice as they do not understand why. If your little one is over 5 months and has a dummy here are some tips to assist with night wakings

Teach baby during the day to find and replace- play in the cot with the dummies

Attach it to a comforter or sleepy tot which is much bigger and bulkier to find in the cot.

If you have exhausted all options and still not getting any silence overnight...Let's set up a time to chat we can then leave the Confetti for babies sleeping through the night party!!!!


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