How to Keep Pacifier in Mouth
Baby Toddler Safety

How to Keep Pacifier in Mouth

Pacifiers are nipple-like baby items that come in handy when you want to engage your child and keep them from being fussy.

There are many reasons why pacifiers keep falling including if your baby’s suckling is weak, if they are spitting it out, or if it’s not the right type for your child. 

Fortunately, there are several things that you can do to prevent this issue. Read on to learn more on how to keep pacifier in mouth. 

How to Keep Pacifier in Mouth

Knowing the benefits of pacifiers, parents may find it frustrating when a pacifier keeps falling off when the baby keeps removing it.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to keep it in place in your baby’s mouth.

1. Buy the Right Pacifier

Buying the right pacifier for your infant will help you to eliminate issues that may be caused by the pacifier not matching your infant’s needs.

The market is improving and introducing different kinds of pacifiers. 

A good trick is to learn the basic components and materials of pacifiers and experiment with varieties and stick with the one that works. 

  • The Pacifier’s Size

A pacifier larger than what your infant needs will keep falling down while a pacifier that is too small can cause a choking hazard. 

Generally, the pacifier’s size is grouped by age:

  • 0-6 months (small)
  • 6-18 months (medium)
  • 18 months and older (large)
  • The Pacifier’s Style

Single piece pacifiers are the most common in the market. Nevertheless, there are more to choose from including:

  • Stuffed Animal Pacifier;
  • Multiple Piece Pacifier;
  • Open-Shield Pacifier; 
  • Feeding Pacifier;

Ensure that you choose a style that is comfortable for your child to reduce the chances of spitting it out. 

  • The Pacifier’s Color

Before their 4th month, they can’t recognize any color. Black and white are their first fascination when it comes to visual things.

Hence, after their 4th month, they tend to be attractive with bright, bold colors such as red and green followed by yellow and blue. You can use this trick to choose the pacifier for your baby and encourage them to keep it in their mouth. 

2. Choose the Perfect Time 

Sucking fingers is the most noticeable behavior of a baby and is part of their development.

Known as non-nutritive sucking, babies do this at the end of the feeding, between nutritive sucking (during they latch on), and when they want to fall asleep. 

This is a perfect time to introduce a pacifier as this will ensure that they hold onto the pacifier.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents should introduce pacifiers to their children around one month, after they have learned how to breastfeed.

In addition to that, you may also want to introduce the pacifier once they wake up and before their nighttime sleep. 

3. Establish Independence

In most cases, your baby will depend on you to hold their pacifier while they are sucking on it. However, this may not be very convenient for you all the time. 

You may start establishing independence by placing the pacifier on what you think is their dominant hand.

Then, guide their hand to hold the pacifier and lead it to their mouth.

Just rub the tip of the pacifier on their lips and see if they will initiate to suck on it. If not, slowly introduce the pacifier into their mouth.

Keep repeating this every day and see the results. Remember, it takes many experiments before you find the perfect way to establish that independence.

4. Be Patient and Consistent

It is not automatic that your baby will get a hang of the pacifier immediately.

Some infants may get used to it quickly while others may take a bit longer. Therefore, it helps to be patient and have a routine of introducing the pacifier.

You may also want to take time and cradle, hug, or sing soothing music before introducing a pacifier.

This may help calm them down, making it easy to hold on to the pacifier longer. 

Once you have established a routine, ensure that you stick to it. This will help your baby to develop the circadian rhythm

5. Ask for Help

Remember that you are not expected to figure it out all alone. It would be best to ask for help and support from your family and friends, especially those that have been on this journey before.

By talking to someone else, you will get the burden off your shoulders and get useful tips.

What’s more, you can also talk to professionals like a pediatrician to help you figure out the best way to keep a pacifier in your child’s mouth.

This way, it will also be easy to establish if there are any underlying issues that may need to be addressed. 

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There is no denying that helping babies keep pacifiers in their mouths can be a tricky affair.

As established, there are many ways to keep the pacifier in the mouth and you may need to experiment with different routines. 

Also, it is always important to try and recognize the underlying reasons for your baby spitting out the pacifier.

Once you have established the root causes, it will be easier for you to help your child hang on to a pacifier.

Sometimes, this may require using reverse psychology. If these don’t work, don’t hesitate to talk to a professional and get expert advice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to coat the pacifier with sugar and honey?

While these may be tempting to do, coating the pacifier with something sweet can cause tooth decay. Also, honey given to children under 12 months can lead to a serious illness named Botulism. 

Botulism, or Infant Botulism, is a rare but very serious condition caused by Clostridium bacteria.

This bacteria usually contaminates soil and dust but also foods like honey.

Infants do not have a mature digestive system that can help to move Clostridium bacteria through the body before they can cause harm. 

How to keep the pacifier in the mouth while sleeping?

Sucking keeps the pacifier in the mouth. That is why it is normal that the pacifier will fall once the baby is asleep because they will stop sucking in the midst.

Do pacifiers eliminate the risk of SIDS?

No, they can only reduce the risk. Sudden infant deaths during sleep happen to babies under one year old.

According to the American Association of Pediatrics, sucking on pacifiers while sleeping reduces the risk of SIDS because the babies’ brain is active and alert. 



Iesha Mulla

Iesha is a loving mother of 2 beautiful children. She's an active parent who enjoys indoor and outdoor adventures with her family. Her mission is to share practical and realistic parenting advice to help the parenting community becoming stronger.

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