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Pacifier predisposition to smoking?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Okay, against my principles, I broke down and got a pacifier for my 2 1/2 month old because I just CANNOT provide the sucking ops he needs. I pretty much nurse on demand (luckily his needs for actual milk has decreased), have another child and a chaotic home life, he is very colicky and has horrible gas 24/7. Sucking helps him get through the pain. I'm thinking it's a dairy allergy and am starting to modify my diet accordingly. I wear him and hold him all but about 2 hours in the day, when i'm cooking or my dh has him. My dd, btw, was the same but I was able to really nurse on demand through all her pains because I didn't have anyone else to look after.
At any rate I'm wondering about opinions on this. If I give him the opportunity to suck all the time, he will, right? A while ago now he fell asleep with the pacifier and when it fell out, he woke up very angry. I held him and popped it back in, though I wanted to try to get him to sleep on his own. But he needs to sleep, b/c the gas wakes him up a lot and I feel he's sleep deprived. Will a pacifier cause him to need/desire sucking more than he actually spontaneously would if left to suffer without the nipple? And as a result, do you think he'd be predisposed to smoking?
post #2 of 7
My son needed to suck a LOT but I also had OSS in the early months and he would end up choking on milk he didn't even want, and crying and screaming. So we started using a pacifier. It gave him so much comfort that I felt wrong to withhold it from him. He used it in the car and to go to sleep, mostly. At around 7 months old he one day just began refusing the pacifier, so we threw them out. After that he nursed to sleep.

Personally I wouldn't worry about the smoking thing. I don't know how one could make any correlation between pacifier use and smoking. If there's a strong oral need, that was there in advance of the pacifier use, kwim? So I don't know that ignoring/stifling that strong oral need will give a more desirable outcome than satisfying it.

Anyway, I don't think people take up smoking because they want something to put in their mouths. You always hear people saying they like how smoking gives them something to do with their hands. You can do other things with your mouth--chew gum, bite nails, whatever.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
NAK - thanks - what is OSS? mine is spitting up a lot too & def helps not to feed so much.
post #4 of 7
I don't know...the connection between pacifier use and smoking seems a bit odd to me... Lots of babies need to suck all of the time...it develops muscles and sooths the babies. I sucked on either my fingers or a pacifier (can't remember which) all the time as a baby and have never had any inclination to pick up a cig. If the baby wasn't sucking on the binky, he'd probably be sucking on you....it's a pretty common infant behavior.
post #5 of 7
I think its one of those cases where, if a paci baby grows up to be a smoker its because of the paci, and if a non-paci baby grows up to be a smoker its because he was denied the oral stimulation as a child i.e. its based mostly on anecdotal evidence and convenient examples. Who knows, maybe the strong suck urge is a predisposition to smoking in the first place (or to chewing gum, or to talking a lot in class or whatever....).
Basically, I wouldn't worry about it, if your baby is happy now thats whats important now.
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
thanks for your opinions... To clarify, my question specifically was with using a false nipple for non-nutritive sucking instead of comfort nursing (not whether they should suck all the time); whether it encourages more sucking and thus more craving for oral stimulation, or whether it satisfies the enormous sucking urge and could help avoid cravings once they grow older. anyway i'm not worried about it & i don't really have a committed opinion, it was just sort of a link that struck me as possible & i wondered what others thought.
post #7 of 7
I think that some kids have stronger sucking needs than others. I don't know if what they are sucking would matter as much. I nursed my son on demand (as much as I could anyway) for three years, thinking that I would be getting all of his sucking needs taken care of. He is now chewing his fingers constantly and he is almost four. I did wean him a few months into my pregnancy, and so I didn't self wean like I had hoped. Now, is he sucking his fingers b/c he wasn't ready? Or is it just a nervous habit? Will he have an oral issue all his life now? I don't know, I guess we will have to wait and see. But I would just attend to your childs needs the best that you can, and you are doing that!
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