How Do You Wean Your Baby Off Their Pacifier?
The longer your baby uses a pacifier, the more dependent they will be on it. One way to get your baby to stop using it is to not wean at all. Babies tend to think if they can't see it, it doesn't exist. Take it away for a week and see what happens. The first few days will be the most difficult, but you may be surprised at the results.
If you want a more gentle approach, here are some steps you can take to casually wean your baby off of pacifier use within about a week to ten days:
- If they use it day and night, limit their use to night time.
- If your baby is teething, that may be another exception you can make.
- Offer a toy or a game instead.
- Try replacing the pacifier with a healthy treat.
- Keep your baby busy for a week. Push them in their stroller, set up a playdate, go for a drive – anything to distract them from wanting to suck on their pacifier.
There's no perfect time to wean your baby off using a pacifier, but the consensus is that 1 year old is ideal, and 3 years is the absolute limit. Most infants will stop using a pacifier on their own by that time. The best thing to do is to speak to your pediatrician about your child's individual needs. They'll be able to guide you with advice tailored to your baby that will help you both rest easy.