Whether you call it a binky, a baba, a soothy, a paci, or something else entirely, some children absolutely love and need the pacifier to self-soothe and calm down. For many new parents (and seasoned parents too), it is the first thing they reach for to soothe a fussy baby. But there are a lot of infant oral care concerns associated with pacifiers also. Will it keep baby from talking? Could it make him sick? Could it damage her emerging teeth? These are common concerns, and for the most part, you have nothing to fear. However, there are many pacifiers on the market, and choosing the right one is vital if you hope to reap the rewards of the pacifier without any of the drawbacks.
Conventional Or Orthodontic
There are two major categories of pacifier that all of the options fall into, either conventional or orthodontic. Orthodontic pacifiers have a flat bottom and a relatively square shape on the nipple, rather than the rounded nipple we associate with the classic pacifier look (and pacifier candy or jewelry). This design allows room for the baby to practice “tongue thrust” which is the motion that facilitates sucking milk from an actual nipple or bottle. Conventional pacifier design doesn’t leave room for this motion. While studies have shown that any pacifier use may increase the likelihood of tooth misalignment (malocclusion), orthodontic pacifiers are less likely. These have been shown to result in fewer issues with bite later in your kids’ lives, such as overbite or openjet.
What To Look For
When you’re trying to find the right pacifier, choosing an orthodontic type is a good start. From there, choose one that has a solid construction, preferably as one solid piece. If the pacifier has moving parts or does additional functions (like a teether with some sort of liquid interior), skip it. Likewise, avoid any pacifiers that attach to baby’s neck, wrists, or crib on a string, as this could pose a strangulation hazard. Before you buy, make sure that you’re choosing the right size for your baby’s mouth, based on age. This will determine the size of the nipple but also the size of the shield around it – you want it to be big enough that your baby can’t get the whole thing in his mouth. Finally, when it doubt, ask your family dentist for recommendations.
You Can Trust Olney Dental for All of Your Dental Care Needs
For all of your oral care questions and concerns, Olney Dental has the expertise and professionalism to get them the answers they need. Olney Dental is ready to supply you with expert service in a professional environment. Schedule an appointment online today! For more information on how we can give your family the best dentist experience available, give us a call at (301) 250-1057 or contact us online. For more dental tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest.