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If you’re a new parent, you may be wondering when to start using a pacifier and which one is the best for your breastfeeding baby. Pacifiers can provide many benefits for babies, including helping them to fall asleep and soothing them during times of stress. In this blog post, we will review the top seven pacifiers for breastfed babies. We’ll also discuss the benefits of using a pacifier and when it’s appropriate to introduce one to your child.
The Best Pacifiers for Breastfeeding Babies: Top 7
- Closest to the real thing: Tommee Tippee Breast-Like Pacifier
- Lovey combo: WubbaNub Infant Pacifier
- Orthodontic: NUK Orthodontic Pacifier
- The Non-Pacifier: Mombella Mimi Mushroom
- Teether Combo: Cutie Pat Pacifier Teether
- For Newborns: MAM Start Newborn Pacifiers in Matte
- For the Occasional Bottle Feeder: Dr. Browns HappyPaci
The Best Pacifier for a Picky Breastfed Baby (Closest to the Real Thing): Tommee Tippee Breast-Like Pacifier
This pacifier is designed to be as close to breastfeeding as possible, and it’s one of the most popular pacifiers for breastfed babies. The Tommee Tippee pacifier is made of super-soft, silicone material and comes in a variety of colors and designs. It also has a natural nipple shape that is similar to a mother’s breast.
I was SURE that my picky baby would love this paci because of its soft natural feel. Turns out she just hates pacifiers, but I know some moms that love these!
Top Features of the Tommee Tippee Pacifier:
- Closest to nature-inspired pacifier that resembles breast
- A silicone nipple that feels like mom’s nipple (it is seriously soft!)
- Prevent nipple confusion thanks to its natural design and feel
- Rounded nipple pacifiers are designed to have no right or wrong side, making for easy placement
- A unique pacifier shield that curves away from the baby’s face and offers superior ventilation for better airflow to reduce any moisture build-up and help prevent skin irritation
- Easy to clean & BPA-free silicone
- The clear silicone design and rounded nipple shape allow for easy viewing of the baby’s teeth and baby’s tongue to ensure the correct use
- Silicone is taste-free and won’t retain any stains or odors.
- Easily sanitized pacifier, by hand or in the top rack of the dishwasher.
- BPA and phthalate-free
- Easy to use with Tommee Tippee baby bottles
The Best Pacifier for Snuggling: WubbaNub Infant Pacifier
The WubbaNub infant pacifier is designed for newborns and comes with a cute little plush animal attached. The WubbaNub pacifier is made of soft, silicone material and comes in a variety of colors and designs.
This was my favorite pacifier to use when I wanted to give my baby some extra love and snuggles. We have the giraffe!
Top Features of the WubbaNub Infant Pacifier:
- Comes with a soft, plush animal attached
- A cult following because moms and babies love it!
- The silicone nipple that feels like a mother’s nipple
- Comes in a variety of colors and designs- they’re all so cute!
- A straight pacifier design with one size fits all.
- Durable one-piece construction is both functional and stylish. Patented design makes it easy for baby to grasp
- Distributed in hospitals, NICUs, and well-baby units nationwide for much-needed comfort (even for tube-fed babies!)
- Latex-free, BPA and PVC-free, and Phthalate free. Made of medical-grade silicone.
- Recommended for newborns through six months (sadly not recommended for prolonged pacifier use!).
Who doesn’t love a soft lightweight plush toy for those rough days? There’s a reason the soothie pacifier is a favorite for fussy babies!
The Best Pacifier for Breastfed Babies (Orthodontic edition): NUK Orthodontic Pacifier
This orthodontic pacifier is designed for babies 0-6 months and was created with breastfed babies in mind. It has a natural nipple shape that is similar to a mother’s breast, making it easier for the baby to transition from nursing to using a pacifier. The NUK pacifier is also made of silicone material and comes in a variety of colors and designs.
These were my firstborn’s absolute favorite. It was the second style we tried and she never took anything else after!
Top Features of the NUK Pacifier:
- This pacifier was designed with orthodontic care in mind, helping to correct alignment problems as your baby grows.
- Asymmetrical design with a flatter bottom to promote a natural suck.
- Slimmer shape to decrease strain on jaw and teeth and reduce the risk of misalignment with baby’s teeth
- The heart-shaped shield rests comfortably below the baby’s nose for easy breathing
- The nipple is made of silicone- similar to a mother’s breast- for an easy transition and prevention of possible nipple confusion.
- BPA-free pacifier (and latex-free)- plus dishwasher safe
- Comes in a variety of colors and designs. Even glow in the dark (a major lifesaver when trying to find it in the middle of the night- trust me!)
- Upgrade to bigger sizes as needed for transitioning (younger babies and older babies)
One of the best orthodontic pacifiers on the market by far! If you’re looking for an orthodontic nipple pacifier, the NUK might be for your baby.
The Best Non-Pacifier for Babies that Refuse a Traditional Paci: Mombella Mimi Mushroom
If your baby is one of the lucky few that never took to a pacifier, or you’re looking for an alternative to soothe your teething baby, the Mombella Mimi Mushroom Teether is a great option! This soft, silicone teether comes in a variety of colors and designs.
Due to its breast-like shape, I’ve seen some reviews for this teether where babies “latched” on and used it as a pacifier. It’s a miracle soother for babies that refuse a paci. My stubborn baby loves hers!
Top Features of the Mombella Mimi Mushroom:
- Designed with a breast and nipple shape in mind to help moms that feel like a human-sized pacifier 🙂
- Soft skin-like silicone- great for picky breastfed babies
- Soothes baby when you need it most0 even newborn babies (car seats, putting them down, etc.)
- A great practice shape for premature babies with sucking
- Boost motor skill oral development in babies from 3-6 months (hand-eye coordination, gripping, reaching, and hand to mouth coordination)
- For moms that want to keep thumbs and fingers out of baby’s mouth sometimes
- Easy to clean and store on the go
- BPA free, dishwasher and freezer safe
- Comes with a bonus clip to keep it off the floor (when it can be safely used- NOT for sleep!)
A great alternative to a silicone pacifier. If your baby is picky and doesn’t want a pacifier, I highly recommend this as a soother! To this day, it’s still my picky baby’s favorite 🙂
The Best Pacifier for Teething Babies: Cutie Pat Pacifier Teether
This pacifier is designed to help soothe and calm teething babies. The Cutie Pat Pacifier Teether is made of soft, silicone material and comes in a variety of colors and designs. It also has a natural nipple shape that is similar to a mother’s breast.
My baby loved this pacifier as a teether (although she never used it as an actual pacifier!).
Top Features of the Cutie Pat Pacifier Teether:
- Teething relief for babies 0-12 months old
- Pacifier nipples are made of silicone that feels like mom’s nipple
- Comes in 5 different “stages” for a baby as he or she grows
- Safely made with soft medical grade silicone
- Attaches easily to a paci clip when you don’t want to pick it off the floor 100 times.
- The nipple easily tucks away for storage and use as a teether
- The soft nipple on the baby pacifier gently replicates breastfeeding for natural palette development, and the soother feels wonderful on the infant’s gums.
- Dishwasher safe (top rack) for an easy cleaning silicone pacifier
The Best Pacifier for a Breastfed Baby (Newborn edition): MAM Start Newborn Pacifiers
This classic fan favorite is at the top of the list for good reason. MAM pacifiers are designed for a newborn baby (0-2 months) and are made of soft, silicone material that’s gentle on baby’s gums. They also have a symmetrical shape that is easy for the baby to hold, and they come in a variety of fun designs. They are definitely one of the best pacifiers for breastfed newborns on the market (even tiny newborn babies).
Top Features of the MAM Pacifier:
- Thanks to its symmetry, this pacifier is always right-side-up (keeping the baby’s nose clear of plastic), making it easy to use and avoiding a fussy baby.
- Designed with jaw and tooth development in mind.
- BPA-free medical-grade silicone nipple- super soft material that breastfed babies love (silicone nipples are a mom favorite!)
- Come with a convenient sterilizing case to keep this pacifier clean on the go in your diaper bag.
- They can grow with your baby- just size up as needed!
The Best Pacifiers for Breastfed Babies that Get a Bottle on Occasion: Dr. Brown’s HappyPaci
If you are pumping and bottle feeding (or supplementing), it helps to have the baby’s pacifier and bottle nipple complementing each other. With Dr. Brown’s bottles one of the most popular bottles for breastfed babies (particularly to reduce gas and colic), it makes sense so use their own pacifier design.
Dr. Brown’s HappyPaci is a silicone pacifier designed with a rounded nipple shape and ventilation holes (similar to the bottle and Dr. Brown’s bottle nipple). This pacifier also comes in a variety of colors and designs.
Top Features of the Dr. Brown’s HappyPaci:
- Designed with a round nipple shape like their bottles
- Ventilation holes help reduce gas and colic
- Comes in a variety of colors and designs
- The soft silicone nipple flexes0 making it soft on baby’s gums
- One size fits all (0 to 6 months)
- BPA free and latex free (great for sensitive babies with latex allergies)
- Recommended for newborns through six months.
- A great complement to the Dr. Brown’s bottle system
Best Pacifiers for Breastfed Littles: Honorable Mentions
Plus, don’t forget these other essentials for your baby’s paci!
- Pacifier clip to prevent a lost pacifier or reduce your baby’s number of pacifier falls
- Drying rack
- Carrying case or bag
If you’re a breastfeeding mom, don’t forget these essentials too:
The Benefits of Using a Pacifier
These days, pacifiers can get an upturned nose in certain mom communities, while others can’t go without. I was leary of pacifiers with my first baby but was happy she took to one for plane rides, car rides, and any other situation where she would feel stressed and needed some extra soothing. I didn’t realize how beneficial this truly was until my second daughter who has completely refused a pacifier. Suddenly, when she’s upset there’s not much can do in the heat of the moment to get her to calm down (except whip out a boob, ha!). Anyways, the point is there are definitely benefits to having a baby use one!
Below are a few benefits of using a pacifier for your baby, including the following:
- Helps baby to fall asleep
- Soothes baby during times of stress
- Can help prevent SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome)
The Disadvantages of Using a Pacifier
Are pacifiers bad? While there are many benefits to using a pacifier, there are also some disadvantages to consider. Some of these include the following:
- Can cause tooth problems if used too often or for too long
- Can interfere with breastfeeding
- The hassle of sterilizing and constantly fetching pacifiers from the ground 🙂 (hint: try using pacifier clips!)
Why You Might Wait to Introduce a Pacifier to a Breastfed Baby
There are some important reasons why you should wait to introduce a pacifier to a breastfed baby. One reason is that breastfeeding is a very important way for mothers and babies to bond. Introducing a pacifier can disrupt this process due to nipple confusion. It’s also important to note that some pacifiers can interfere with breastfeeding and cause problems such as nipple soreness and low milk production.
It’s important to note that not all experts agree on this so it’s up to you to do your own research and decide!
However, this isn’t the case for all moms so choose what is right for you and your baby! And don’t worry if you’ve already started using a pacifier!
When Is It Appropriate to Introduce a Pacifier to a Baby?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends waiting until your baby is 4-6 weeks old before introducing a pacifier (or until breastfeeding is well established). However, some babies may be ready earlier or later than this.
If you’re still unsure about when to introduce a pacifier to your baby, speak with your pediatrician. He or she can help you decide what’s best for your child.
How to Get Baby On Board with a Pacifier
If your baby seems hesitant or doesn’t take to a pacifier right away, don’t worry! There are a few things you can do to help get your baby on board.
- Try different types of pacifiers until you find one that your baby likes.
- Start out by using the pacifier during times when your baby is calm, such as during diaper changes or when you’re breastfeeding.
- Place the pacifier in your baby’s mouth and gently rub their cheek until they start to suck on it.
- Don’t force the pacifier into your baby’s mouth if they’re resisting. Try again later when they’re feeling calmer.
- If they’re suspicious and not sure what to do with it, try adding a drop of breastmilk to the tip to entice them (this works for my youngest when she’s super tired and in the car- the only time she will take one!)
In most cases, babies will eventually start to take to a pacifier. Just be patient and keep trying until you find the right one for your baby!
When to “Wean” Baby from a Pacifier
There’s no set time frame for when you should wean your baby from a pacifier. Some babies will stop using a pacifier on their own, while others may need a little help.
If you’re having trouble getting your baby to give up the pacifier, try these tips:
- Gradually reduce the number of times per day that you offer the pacifier.
- Replace the pacifier with a transitional object, such as a teething ring.
- Wean your baby from the pacifier during periods of stress, such as when they’re teething or going through a growth spurt.
- Speak with your pediatrician if you’re having trouble getting your baby to give up the pacifier.
How to Choose the Right Pacifier for Baby
There are many different types of pacifiers on the market, so it can be tough to decide which one is right for your baby. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a pacifier:
- The size and shape of the pacifier. Make sure it’s the right size for your baby’s mouth and that the shape is comfortable for them.
- The material of the pacifier. Some babies prefer rubber pacifiers, while others prefer silicone or latex.
- The design of the pacifier. Some designs are more popular than others and maybe more appealing to your baby.
- The nipple type and pacifier shapes. Many pacifiers have a flat nipple, which some babies find more comfortable than a round nipple.
- The pacifier’s grips. Some pacifiers have grips on the handle, which can make it easier for your baby to hold on to.
- The brand of the pacifier. There are many different brands of pacifiers available, so you can choose one that you trust.
If At First, You Don’t Succeed, Try Try Again!
Some breastfed babies refuse to use a pacifier, don’t worry! It’s all good. Just keep trying until you find the one that’s right for them. You might choose the right paci that they love on the first try, or it might take several tries (or maybe they don’t like any!). Regardless, don’t stress and think of it as a game 🙂 Best of luck mama!