HOW TO MAKE PACIFIER WEANING AS STRESS-FREE AS POSSIBLE:
- Use the soother only at night time: Have a small bowl in the corner of their crib. Teach your child to put the pacifiers in it when they get out of bed. This helps with the transition of only using them for sleep. It also helps them to know where to find the pacifiers if they wake up at night. Make sure there are several in the bowl before going to sleep.
- Snip a small hole in the tip of the soother. When your child sucks on it, it won’t work, and you can say it’s broken.
- You could try by allowing the pacifier only rest time and bed time
- Send it to the “pacifier fairy”, and replace it with a special gift
- As soon as your child is asleep, remove the pacifier from it his/her mouth.
- Put them up on the highest shelf, so YOU can’t get them easily while weaning.
- Expect that the first few days might be difficult (don’t give in in the first 3 days, and you’ll likely break the habit)
- Rub his back or his tummy when he/she starts to fuss while sleeping, often he will stop crying without ever having actually woken up.
- Once they are old enough to have blankets in their bed, provide snuggly blankets with holes in them (knitted blankets)so he/she can breathe well, but still comfort herself/himself. Go into her room when she cries, but don’t turn on the lights. Pat her back, hand her the blankie and go out. This will take about three nights.
- Use a noise machine to help keep them asleep (the noise soothes them)
- Tell them that the cat/dog took it.
- A very popular trend is to have the pacifier sewn into a stuffed animal.
- Consider waiting to get rid of the pacifier until they are old enough to give up nap time, as nap time is usually associated with “soother time”.
- Try Essential oils. Use a drop or two on their socks or on a stuffed animal or blanket that they sleep with.
- Buy a very special toy they can have during nap time with them – a new princess toy or superhero toy that is great for snuggling.
- Give them a cup of warm milk before bedtime.
- Put a nightlight in their room, and allow them to have a special pillow instead, if they are old enough for this.
- Try a sticker chart. Give them a sticker each time that wake up in the morning without crying at bedtime.
- Read books
- Cut off the tops completely, and let them hold the plastic part of the pacifier.
- Let them listen to a book on tape, before bed, to help them focus on the book and not the pacifier.
Hopefully one of these suggestions will help to make pacifier weaning a brief and stress-free transition for your child.
In the end, just remember to be patient. Remember that whatever you decide to do is YOUR decision and you need to do what works best for your family.