Let’s Talk About Dummy’s!
As you may know dummy’s can be great to use as a comforter to calm and soothe our little ones. They allow our little ones to feel calm and in turn soothes and re-boots their nervous system.
Although dummy’s can be a great help to soothe your children, we recommend not using them after the first year of your child’s life.
Here is a few ways dummy’s may cause harm to your child’s growth and development:
– Dummy’s can effect the structure of your child’s mouth. Using a dummy may lead to their teeth not growing correctly and therefore causing problems with their bite. They can also cause teeth decay!
– Using a dummy and your child becoming reliable on their dummy may harm their speech and language development. When a child becomes used to having a dummy for comfort, they learn to speak around it. This impacts the way their speech develops (due to restricting the tongues movement) and will effect their use of their speech when the dummy is not being used.
– Children feel comfort and calm when they have their dummy, which often leads to them not talking or communicating as much. This will in turn effect their understanding and use of speech and language.
– We know it can be a struggle to ease your child away from using their dummy for comfort. Here is a few of our top tips on how you can work towards being dummy free!
- Offer something else as a comforter such as a teddy, toy or blanket.
- Dont allow your baby to babble or talk with the dummy in their mouth, encourage them to stop first, remove the dummy and then speak. This will help them develop their speech correctly.
- Talk to your child and prepare them for what’s going to happen, use something that will excite them and make it feel like a special treat! Your child’s dummy could go to the fairies, easter bunny, father Christmas etc!
- Use lots of praise, encouragement and comfort from yourselves.
- Keep consistent!
- Have a special box or place that your child puts their dummy for the majority of the day, they can then get it out at specific times. You can gradually lower the times of day they get the dummy from the special box!
- Encourage your child to leave their dummy with a favourite toy of theirs too look after until bedtime!
- Make a dummy tree for their fairies! Encourage your child to use their dummies to make a craft/decoration to attract the fairies to your home!
Whatever you choose must be right for you, your child and your family. Take your time, do it gradually and dont put pressure on yourself to get it first time!