Thumb v. Pacifier v. Neither... - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-06-2010, 04:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Where do you stand and why?

Angela
Chatty Girl - 3/2006, Lovey Boy - 1/2010, Delicious Baby Girl - 1/2012
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Old 04-06-2010, 05:31 PM
 
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I prefer the thumb simply because they can't lose it!

Our first DD found her thumb early and sucks it when going to sleep. DS *LOVED* his soother but kept on losing it when going to sleep - frustrating for everyone. I finally took the soother away (cold turkey), and he has since learned to put himself to sleep other ways.

I have tried the soother with DD#2, but she has no interest....and I'm OK with that! ...one less thing to keep track of and (try to keep) clean. ;-)

are you trying a paci? Hey, if it works, use it!
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Old 04-06-2010, 07:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Neither one took a binky, but I am *dying* for Griffin to find his thumb. He's sooo close...and then won't suck on my pinky all the time!

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Old 04-06-2010, 07:12 PM
 
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Thumb is definitely easier to keep track of, but harder to get them to stop. My 4.5 year old is still a thumb sucker, and I don't see her stopping any time soon. My oldest and Marissa are both "neither", using a breast for comfort instead. My second was sucking her thumb a few minutes after birth, and has been ever since.

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Old 04-06-2010, 07:20 PM
 
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i say nothing. no soother to loose, forget or replace, no dirty soother or hands in their mouth, no trying to talk around thumb or soother. if they never have had a thumb or soother to suck on then they dont need to "learn" to sooth themselves in other ways.
forgot about breastfeeding no confusion between soother/thumb and breast
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Old 04-06-2010, 08:19 PM
 
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I'm going with neither! I sucked my thumb for an embarassingly long time. Way past toddlerhood. DS LOVED his binky. LOVED it. But it was hard to keep up with, he talked around it, etc.
Emma does not do either one. She'll take the binky at night, but she sucks to sleep then spits it out. She can take it or leave it, we don't have to have it every time we leave the house.
Interestingly enough, she found her thumb as soon as she was born, but has not found it since. I guess time will tell if she ends up sucking it or not.
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Old 04-06-2010, 08:36 PM
 
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Anything that helps my kid sleep that isn't toxic is okay with me.

At the moment Emily will take a pacifier happliy (especially in the car seat where her fingers are less accessible), but sometimes if she has spat it out and she stirs and fusses, she will find her hand before I get to her. She sucks her two middle fingers...but when she is super tired she has a hard time getting to them, so I give her the Paci.

DS spat his out at about 5 or 6 mo and never looked back and he really needed it to sleep before that. On the other extreme I sucked my thumb until I was 13...but I really think it did me no harm, so if this is what Emily needs to soothe herself to sleep I have no problem with that.

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Old 04-06-2010, 11:15 PM
 
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I prefer the thumb or finger, but have found that in some of my kids they either get it or they don't. If they don't get it and need to suck and I can't be there for them to suckle at the breast then a pacifier will do. Out of the nine kids I have had three thumb/finger suckers, five pacifier suckers and one that took neither.

I like the thumb/fingers because they never lose them and they can pop them in whenever they feel the need to suck. However I hate it as they get older because I have seen my kids put some pretty gross (dirty) hands in their mouth while playing outside and it is harder to break them of it.

The pacifier - well like I said it can get lost, they can get costly to replace if you lose them regularly (which we do), but they are easier to break of and in my house less likely to put a dirty one in my child's mouth since we have many of them so if one falls down and is gross we can just give a clean one.

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Old 04-06-2010, 11:33 PM
 
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I prefer a pacifier and WISH my dd would take one. But alas, only my ds took to the pacifier. My two girlies were both just not interested. I keep trying with dd2 though!

I prefer the pacifier because you can take it away when they get older. Thumb, not so much. I was a thumbsucker when I was a child and it is a hard, hard habit to break!! Plus you can clean a paci, wash it, etc... with a thumb as they get older they have their hands all over the dirt and floor and in gosh knows what. And finally, a really worked up baby might not have the presence of mind to stick their thumb in their mouth to calm down. I like that I can offer the pacifier easier than trying to wrestle a crying baby's hand into its mouth.

And when it comes to pacifier vs. nothing I am just totally on the pacifier side. Any time I can have another tool to help calm and soothe an upset baby, I'm all over it. It's especially great for car rides!! Wish I could convince dd to feel the same way!!

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Old 04-06-2010, 11:44 PM
 
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Strawberry fields, this may seem like a daft question, but have you tried different shapes? DS only ONLY liked the round bulb shaped ones...all others might as well have been made of crap. he;d look at you like "what is THAT?" and spit it as far as his tiny mouth could manage.

Rebekah - mom to Ben 03/05 and Emily 01/10, a peace educator, and a veg*n and wife to Jamie.
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:47 PM
 
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prefer thumb.
my four girls were all finger suckers - 3thumb, 1pointer finger. They sucked their fingers until 4-7yo and only the finger sucker has any damage to her teeth.
my four older boys used ME as a pacifer and that was exhausting and didn't delay the return of fertility, so I don't vote "neither" - lol!

btw, we offered a pacifier to each child. Two of the girls took it until 1yo, when it disapeared and they began finger sucking instead. In retrospect we think they were always sucking their finger, after the paci fell out in the night. It was all too easy to ditch the paci!

for ending thumbsucking, 3 were bribed and 1 made the decision on her own b/c her thumb was getting chapped and it hurt.

So far, Matthew likes his paci and has found his thumb a few times. He is a "high suck needs" baby and it was too much for me to try to keep up with that with nursing. I was sitting with him on the breast all day - literally!!! I did wait until he was 5wks to offer the paci, though. I was counting down the days.

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Old 04-07-2010, 12:02 AM
 
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Strawberry fields, this may seem like a daft question, but have you tried different shapes? DS only ONLY liked the round bulb shaped ones...all others might as well have been made of crap. he;d look at you like "what is THAT?" and spit it as far as his tiny mouth could manage.
I've only tried the Soothie and the Born Free, which have really different nipple shapes. It was a no go on either of them and now that she's 2.5 months old I don't know if it is worth investing any more money at this point? I don't think she is a high needs comfort sucker and maybe that is part of it. My ds would nurse and nurse and nurse until I was just crawling the ceiling. He loved his pacifier. Neither dd1 or dd2 is like that.

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Old 04-07-2010, 01:22 AM
 
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I don't like the idea of pacifiers, but we have tried them with both kids. Neither have been interested. We offered one to DS when he was about 3 months when he 1. discovered he could suck on his fingers and 2. was having trouble keeping them in his mouth when falling asleep. But no dice.

With Ella, we have offered, keep offering, when she is upset in the car, but it just seems to make her angrier and angrier until it falls out/we take it out. She sucks her fingers occasionally.

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Old 04-07-2010, 01:27 AM
 
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I prefer neither.

With my first few I tried the sucky, but it always got lost and was frustrating for those that had to have it. My son used his thumb, and now, even as a teenager, when in deep sleep he still does suck it (even though he does not want to do it but he can't seem to stop). My brother, that was a thumb sucker as a child will still suck his thumb when in deep sleep (even at over 40).

I have found that me being the passy is much better, because it is a habit that will end at some point and will not damage their teeth.

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they are placed there for the amusement of those who like to point them out.
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Old 04-07-2010, 08:39 AM
 
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Fingers for my first and at 6 he still does. Paci for my girl in the car (for the 6 year olds sake) and at fussy time 7pm--nothing for sleep.

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Old 04-07-2010, 10:43 AM
 
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Anything that helps my kid sleep that isn't toxic is okay with me.
that's how i feel... i'd be happy if holly found her hand/thumb but for now i'm pretty pleased with the paci.

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Old 04-07-2010, 12:20 PM
 
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Definitely paci. Maggie was a thumb sucker for the first 3 weeks and we pushed the paci until we found one she would take. I would much prefer she comfort nursed, but she gets really angry if she's sucking and my milk lets down when she's not hungry. I've tried and tried to get her to nurse instead of the paci and it just makes her more upset.

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Old 04-07-2010, 01:07 PM
 
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Olivia won't take the paci. I tried different ones but she spits them out. If I try and hold them for her she seems to gag. She is constantly sucking on something though (fist, fingers, my nipples, not thumb yet) and I believe it would help her if she could use the paci. By the way what is a soothie?

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Old 04-07-2010, 01:18 PM
 
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since i don't have kids yet,t he only thing i will add to this talk is a comment about sucking on lips. i sucked on my bottom lip as i was growing and my happily crunchy mom thought it was fine cause it was a natural part of me. well it wasn't, it completely reshaped my jaw tot he point that i could not speak clearly. it took 7 years of ortho works and speech therapy to get my mouth working normal.
i had no known issues prior to getting my teeth in, but once i had them the force of the sucking against them and my jaw growing were at odds.

so just a warning to keep a keen eye out once babies get teeth and please don't think that just because something is not toxic, that it does not have side effects.

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Old 04-07-2010, 03:21 PM
 
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DS takes a paci sometimes when he wants to comfort suck but the milk is making him upset. He doesn't depend on it though and it only comes out when he really needs help falling asleep. He lets go of it in his sleep and I put it away or switch to the boob. So far so good. We use a Tommee Tippee paci and I like it

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Old 04-07-2010, 04:22 PM
 
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since i don't have kids yet,t he only thing i will add to this talk is a comment about sucking on lips. i sucked on my bottom lip as i was growing and my happily crunchy mom thought it was fine cause it was a natural part of me. well it wasn't, it completely reshaped my jaw tot he point that i could not speak clearly. it took 7 years of ortho works and speech therapy to get my mouth working normal.
i had no known issues prior to getting my teeth in, but once i had them the force of the sucking against them and my jaw growing were at odds.

so just a warning to keep a keen eye out once babies get teeth and please don't think that just because something is not toxic, that it does not have side effects.
On the otherhand, I sucked my thumb until I was thirteen and BECAUSE of that did not need painful orthodontal work. The force of my thumb pressing against my upper teeth caused them to have a bit of an overbite and a space between my front teeth, but then my wisdom teeth started pushing in and everything fell into place. I have perfectly straight teeth now and no overbite.

ETA: but obviously you should always keep an eye on that sort of stuff...thanks for the reminder why.

Rebekah - mom to Ben 03/05 and Emily 01/10, a peace educator, and a veg*n and wife to Jamie.
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:29 PM
 
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Not in your ddc.

I prefer neither but reality is sometimes a pacifier comes in handy.

We had them around but dd1 never used one. She would happily comfort nurse and that was great.

DD2 was a projectile vomiter with silent reflux. She couldn't just comfort nurse because she would throw up. When she wasn't nursing she'd have issues with reflux. A soother allowed her to comfort suck (no vomiting) and kept the reflux away.

She dropped the pacifier around a year when she got her first cold. She wouldn't suck it with a stuffy nose so I tossed it and she never noticed.
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:33 PM
 
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I guess I'll be the one to say neither. I hate the idea of a paci (many reasons, but they make me cringe) and I think the thumb can cause orthodontic problems. When he wants to suck, he gets nursed... which has been a huge commitment on my part considering for his entire first year he wanted to suck almost 24/7!! I'm sure my answer might change if my circumstances were different or I wasn't able to WAH or had several kids etc.

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Old 04-08-2010, 12:30 PM
 
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I don't like the idea of pacifiers, but we have tried them with both kids. Neither have been interested.
none of mine took to the paci nor have they beeb thumb suckers. Its all about the boobie for them

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Old 04-08-2010, 04:52 PM
 
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I prefer the pacifier since I can take it away.

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Old 04-08-2010, 06:00 PM
 
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maybe it is unpopular around here, but I'll admit that I *hate* my boob being used as a pacifier.

AND I find that route very difficult with two other children running around...

for that reason, most of the time it is a choice between finger or paci. That being said, most of the time when she gets upset I pick her up and comfort her that way....the worst is when she is in the car seat and *NOTHING* works.

oh well...
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Old 04-08-2010, 06:18 PM
 
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Bella found her thumb about ten days ago or something - she'd found it twice before then - once in the hospital and once at about a month old on a trip to Menards :P

It's actually nice for her because instead of becoming upset when she can't comfort nurse, she'll happily suck on her thumb. By no means does she suck on it all night long - just until she's asleep, and then it comes out. After that not until she wakes up, and if I'm not there she will suck it and when I come along, she takes it out and grins at me.

I never sucked my thumb OR a pacifier but have a bloody awful overbite and totally wonky teeth - even a snaggle tooth - so hey, sadly good teeth can't just always grow no matter what you suck.

I did try giving her a paci once or twice but it was SO depressing to me to have half her face covered up with plastic. She spat it out or gagged on it every single time I tried, so that was totally useless!

It's sweet to watch her sucking her thumb. I would think humans have done it for...well probably since the dawn of time. It woulnd't surprise me if other primates do the same things...

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Old 04-09-2010, 10:04 PM
 
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nak

diego took the paci that the hospital sent home until he was 2 weeks old. at that point, one of the cats got to it and chewed it up, and diego refused to accept another one. about a week ago, he discovered how to get his index finger into his mouth, and has been soothing himself that way. i prefer finger/thumb over a paci because he can decide when he wants to suck and does not need to rely on someone else to give him a paci, them retrieve it over and over.

we had to hide the unwanted pacis in a drawer, because padma (who is 3 and never took a paci as a baby) has decided that she likes sucking on them.
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:28 PM
 
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our decision was partially made for us, as our baby was given a paci (a nuk) when he was in the NICU. since he could not breastfeed until 15 hours old, they gave him a nuk while he was on an IV.

he still has that nuk, and we put it on one of those cords that attaches to whatever they are in so it doesn't get lost. he prefers the nuk to his own hand, but prefers our fingers or even better, a boob to the nuk.

i say if it works, more power to you!

oh yeah- when i was a kid i sucked my thumb in my sleep (never awake once i was past preschool) and ended up (so they tell me) with an overbite and braces.

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Old 04-10-2010, 12:28 PM
 
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maybe it is unpopular around here, but I'll admit that I *hate* my boob being used as a pacifier.

AND I find that route very difficult with two other children running around....
I feel the same way and I don't have two older children running around. Thankfully DS seems to get upset when he just wants to suck and milk comes out!
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