Pacifiers are great soothers for a newborn, but could pose problems when a child gets older. When is it no longer necessary and when does it become a problem? Here’s a guide to the ins and outs of pacifiers:
What is a pacifier?
Called by many cute names (Binky, Paci, bah-bah), a pacifier is a tool designed to soothe infants when they are crying. They are useful for satisfying the sucking reflex necessary for newborn feeding, reducing the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) when napping or sleeping, and they help children learn to self-soothe.
For this post we are only talking about rubber/plastic/silicone pacifiers. We also aren’t covering teething for this post. If you have any questions, please leave us a note in the comments.
As an Occupational Therapist, my focus is to provide support to those who need assistance completing functional daily tasks and activities. This may be through building skills to complete tasks or adapting the environment to meet the child’s needs. This can also include working with Physical Therapists and Speech-Language Pathologists regarding concerns of movement and communication.
Wait, what is the difference?
Occupational Therapy looks at the individual in terms of whether they can participate in meaningful activities or daily tasks that promote independence. Our specialty is analyzing an activity and determining the skills necessary to complete it. From there, we can either help the person build those skills or alter the environment so they can be successful in the activity.