The case for – or against – the use of pacifiers to help prevent SIDS

The American Academy of Pediatrics came out with a statement in 2005 recommending offering a pacifier at every sleep time to reduce the incidence of SIDS. For breastfed babies they recommend delaying introduction until one month. They further recommend removing the pacifier at 6 months.
Rosie Dodds a senior policy officer for NCT wrote an excellent piece titled” Do dummies prevent SIDS?” for the NCT publication “Perspective”. 1.
The points that she makes that are worth thinking about are –
“observational studies find most dummies fall out within 30 minutes of the baby falling asleep, while many SUDS babies are discovered several hours after this”
An analysis of seven studies in developing countries found that a history of breastfeeding was associated with a 36% reduction in the risk of SIDS.
The piece concludes saying that “seems possible that dummy use is protective against SIDS for formula-fed babies, as a whole group,. It is not clear in breastfed babies that dummy use would have appositive contribution overall as there may be a greater natural arousal and other protective factors. In addition, dummy use may undermine breastfeeding in some situations. “ 1.

  1. Dodds, Rosie, Do Dummies help prevent SIDS? Perspective NTC publication for parent-centered midwifery March 2011/ Issue 10. Pgs. 6-7

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