So, you’ve decide it’s time, huh?
Time to ditch the pacifier.
As this can be a very difficult time for our children, that does not mean it has to be traumatizing to them or overwhelming to us.
Below are 9 simple tips when working through Pacifier Weaning Techniques to help smooth the trail during the transition.
Two birds with one stone on some of these tips by the way! You can also incorporate these tips in other situations where it may be a big transition for your child or during a time that they don’t understand what is happening.
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9 Tips To Make Pacifier Weaning EASIER!
1 Praise Your Child
Praise when they don’t use their pacifier and get them excited that they made a good choice!
Scolding can only make it more difficult for our little ones. They don’t fully understand why something they love is being taken away from them. Then if they are being scolded for being sad about it, can make them think the entire situation is bad.
Encourage your little one to leave the binky behind and when they do, even if they are crying, praise them! Tell them that they are doing a good job, dance, high-five and do whatever you need to make them smile around the situation!
2 Get On The Same Page
Having everyone on the same page makes a HUGE difference on successful pacifier transition. Speak with all adults that have time with your child, so that everyone understands what your family have decided.
For example, if you don’t tell your daycare provider of the new pacifier decisions, they may give your little one the pacifier as normal. If you have decided to do pacifier weaning, this can just prolong the process and confuse your little one along with it all.
3 Talk to your child
Think about how frustrated we can get when we don’t understand something. Now, think about how confusing it could be for your child when something is being taken away from them without any explanation.
Children are learning sponges so help them understand what is happening by explaining to them what you are doing.
Even if they don’t understand every word you say, talking to them and letting them know it is all okay can help smooth the waters.
Get down to their level, tell them whats happening and remind them that they are being a big boy or big girl without the pacifier. Remember to praise!
4 Talk to Yourself
Not really out loud, but unless you truly need to, there’s no judgment!
Prepare and remind yourself that this may be a difficult time for your child, which may come with moments that you will need to stand your ground, not letting yourself cave in when you don’t know if you can handle the crying anymore.
Know that these moments may come about during the transition and run though how you might handle those situations. Going into this with a plan can help soften the blows.
5 Play Time Galore
Engaging your child will help occupy them from thinking about the pacifier.
Have extra activities planned for the time you decide to begin weaning. This goes along with the above point of preparing!
Keep your child’s mind occupied and they may just forget about the pacifier all together!
You can try something simple as playing outside or hit two birds with one stone and keep your little one occupied while learning with the Leapfrog 100 Words Book!
We have the original 100 words book and our little girl is in LOVE with it! So, for Christmas we are planning on getting this version as well!
6 Limit the “WORD”
Out of sight out of mind.
Although, children are smarter than we give them sometimes and even hearing the “WORD” (binky, paci, nuk-nuk) can remind them that, “Hey! Oh yeah, I need that!”
Try to limit “the word” to only times of explanation to your child on whats happening and the new schedule of the pacifier.
7 Timing is Essential
Be sure not to start the weaning transition during any other new transition, as in starting a new daycare or arrival of a new sibling.
For the child to cope with a new situation AND their Mama taking their binky!? Cue the storm!
Your child is learning to self soothe during paci-weaning and if they are already struggling with a new stressor, this can become very complicated and confusing to them.
Choose an uneventful time to start the process so that you can have full focus to help your child with the transition.
8 Pull The Pacifier
If you are planning on using the slow and steady approach, during night time gently pull the paci out of your little ones mouth, only after they have drifted off to sleep.
This can help them become accustomed to not having the paci in their mouth all night long.
This may come with a night or two of no sleep for mama, but you won’t have to do this forever.
9 Don’t Rush It
It has been recommended that children stop pacifier use come 12 months of age. Yeah, that did NOT happen in our house!
Don’t feel that you NEED to do pacifier weaning or at a certain time to be a good mom.
Some children just really love their pacifier and may have a really difficult time letting go. Some children throw the pacifier away on their own without our help!
Many children use the pacifier until nearly the age of two or older. Although, it is recommended to have the child off the pacifier by age two, mainly for dental and speech reasons.
So if your little one is just over a year, remember, they are still little!
Don’t rush it and you never know, they may do the transition on their own!
Incorporate one or all nine of these tips to make pacifier weaning easier on your little one & you!
Share the tips that you found useful during the pacifier transition or other tips that us Mamas should know!!
You Got This Mama!