My daughter is a week old. Is it okay to give her a pacifier if I am breastfeeding?
This question is one that many new breastfeeding moms ask. There are several concerns with pacifier use and a breastfeeding newborn. The biggest reason that you may want to give your baby a pacifier is because she is crying. Babies cry for many reasons. Your baby may cry because she is hungry, tired, wet or cold or she may cry simply because she wants to be comforted. In the first few weeks you will start to become acquainted with your baby and her needs. A pacifier sometimes is used as a “crutch” for parents and it becomes easier to put a pacifier in the baby’s mouth than to figure out why she’s crying. Also, a newborn has an innate need to suck. if she is crying because she is hungry, if offered a pacifier instead she may soothe her way to sleep. This may be detrimental for several reasons. If she misses a feeding she may not gain and grow as she should be. Remember, babies double their birth weight by five months! The other reason that it may be detrimental is that your milk supply is stimulated by the frequency in which your baby nurses. If she goes long periods of time between breastfeeding, especially in the early weeks, your milk supply may not get to its fullest potential. Hang in there for at least the first four weeks and then see how you feel about offering a pacifier.
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