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Soothe baby with pacifiers and teethers

When should you use a pacifier for a baby and what types are available?

A pacifier is a rubber, plastic, or silicone nipple that includes a teat, mouth shield, and handle. It is designed to soothe baby in between feedings or while crying by providing a familiar suckling motion, just like baby does on a bottle or breast.

Also known as a binky, dummy, or soother, a baby pacifier should be used once the child is at least fone month old and up to about three years, providing comfort after or before feeding and to keep them distracted from crying. While pacifiers are completely safe, they shouldn't be relied on too often.

Some pacifiers come in fun colours, designs, or patterns, and some even have cute stuffed animals on the handle that babies can play with. They are sold individually or in multi-packs so you can keep one on hand wherever you go and have a spare in case.

A pacifier clip, included or sold separately, attaches to the baby's clothing and the pacifier so that when baby spits it out, it doesn't fall to the ground. Pacifier holders store the pacifier when not in use so the nipple stays clean.

When should you use a teether for a baby and what types are available?

You'll usually find a silicone teether but they are made of materials like rubber and even wood as well. A teether is effectively a chew toy designed to help relieve a baby from the pain of their teeth coming in. It can also help new teeth penetrate through the gums.

Though they were traditionally shaped as rings, teethers now come in all shapes and sizes, and in the form of necklace teethers, bracelets, keys, stuffed animals, and more. The only requirement is that they include a surface the baby can bite and push down on to help soothe their aching gums. The brighter the colours and enticing the textures, the more likely baby will want to put it in their mouth.

Some teethers do double duty as baby teether toys and rattles; and some come with fluid inside so you can refrigerate or freeze them and provide more relief from the cold, numbing sensation.

What is the difference between pacifiers and teethers?

Pacifiers are designed for a sucking motion, similar to how a baby would suck on their mother's nipple or the nipple of a bottle. It's a familiar movement for babies and toddlers, which is why it's so satisfying and comforting.

On the other hand, teethers are specifically designed for babies to chew and bite down on, for the purpose of relieving pain from the aching gums as new teeth push through.

While babies might bite down on a pacifier, it likely won't provide relief that way because the nipple is soft. Meanwhile, babies and toddlers won't really get any relief by sucking on teethers. The material is much harder and designed for chomping down on.

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