Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Big Soother Debate

For a while now I've been attempting to wean Avairy off her soother with no success. The first time went really well during naptime, but when bedtime came around it felt like a lost cause. I gave in after about 30 mins of her crying.

I tried again and no word but hell could better describe the experience! It took almost an hour for her to finally fall asleep with out the soother, but it wasn't easy. She cried the entire time and looked at me with eyes that were confused and begging me to make her feel better.

After I had to ask myself if I was doing the right thing. It's the worst feeling wanting whats best for your child and not knowing what best actually is. Gah.

Now the main reason I wanted her to give up the soother was because she started to wake up multiple times during the night to have it put back in her mouth. She's a breeze to put down to sleep (including when she wakes in the middle of the night) but getting up just for a soother was tiring.

So, for new mothers out there wondering whether they should or shouldn't start with a soother, here is my opinion.
  • DON'T START. However, there are a few exceptions to where it would be ok. First off, babies are born with natural instincts to suck. The reason I got Avairy a soother was because she was starting to suck on her hands a lot and I didn't want her getting use to it. Ultimately, it's easier to take away a soother than a thumb. Looking back I probably would've waited a bit longer to see how it progressed though. Also, babies that are premature or suffer from acid reflux will benefit from using a soother. It's up to you what you decide, but I would suggest not doing it if you don't need to.
  • If you do decide to use one, LIMIT THEIR SOOTHER USAGE. This is because it's not recommended for children over the age of 1 years old to use a soother because of their growing teeth. It can also cause ear infections from prolonged use. Keep it strictly for sleeping. Luckily, I already vowed to do this the minute I bought her one.
  • NEVER ALTER A SOOTHER or try to use any of those "tricks" to wean a child off of it. I've seen some people suggest putting hot sauce on it or cutting the tip off in hopes they become uninterested. You don't want to risk pieces breaking off and the baby choking on it. If you want it gone that bad just take it away cold turkey and tough it out.
In the end, I've realized that it's not so bad for her to use it or maybe the look on her precious face when she was crying convinced me. haha. I figured since she only uses it at night so it won't ruin her teeth and she won't become overly attached to it. And as she gets older maybe (hopefully) she'll know enough to put it in her mouth herself. I can deal with waking up at night for a little bit longer. Afterall, I've already gone 6 months without sleep so what's a little more gonna do?

If you have any tips you want to share about soother weaning I would love to hear it. I'll keep it in my back pocket in case I dare to try again!

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