Tag Archives: breastfeeding

Hospital Pacifier Debate Continues (Article)

Breastfeeding is increasingly being recognized as the “gold standard” in infant nutrition due to its immense benefits for babies and new mothers. Breast-milk is packed with vitamins, nutrients, and disease-fighting components that will prepare your baby for his first months of life. Not only does breastfeeding help protect your baby from numerous illnesses, allergies, SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome), and obesity, but the practice can reduce the risk of postpartum depression as well as breast and ovarian cancer.  What’s not to love?  So, in what seemed to be a relatively straightforward effort to increase breastfeeding, a hospital sought to decrease the distribution of pacifiers, which prior studies claimed decreased the amount of time babies drank breast milk. However, things didn’t quite go as planned.

Conventional wisdom claims that the more pacifier use a baby has in the newborn period, the less likely breastfeeding will be successful. Since exclusive breastfeeding is a major goal of newborn medicine, it seems logical that restricting pacifier use would increase the likelihood that a baby will be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of life, right?  This theory was put to the test recently at a major hospital with a surprising result: decreasing the distribution of pacifiers did not increase the success of breastfeeding, rather, the paciless group actually ended up consuming more infant formula than their paci sucking counterparts.

The use of pacifiers continues to be controversial as this study highlights. Their use is probably not the big factor in whether mothers are successful at breastfeeding.  Lets face it, breastfeeding a small infant is a difficult endeavor, requiring 24 hour a day dedication. It is my opinion that the support, or lack of support by hospitals, doctors, families, and society in general are probably the big factors that determine whether a mother is ultimately successful at breastfeeding, not whether there are pacifiers around in the newborn period.  I think we all can agree that the common goal should be to have every baby get the very best nutritional start in life they can, pacifiers or no pacifiers.

I welcome your comments at www.docsmo.com.   Check out hundreds of posts while you are there on a myriad of pediatric topics. Until next time.

Smo Notes:




written by Keri Register and Paul Smolen M.D.


Breastfeeding Decisions with Anne Gessner PNP (Pedcast)

Regular listeners of DocSmo will recognize Anne Gessner who is a wonderful resource for information regarding breastfeeding and other topics.  Today we discuss the decision that mothers have to make whether or not to breastfeed their infant.  Ms Gessner has many years as a practicing lactation consultant and understands the dynamics of the decision that new mothers are presented.  Listen to her intelligent and informed perspective in this “Let’s Talk Kids”.


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1. llli.org La Leche League, find local peer support
2. kellymom.com   information
3. aap.org,   American academy of pediatrics
4. ilca.org  locate a lactation consultant
5. Section 4207 of the Affordable Care Act 2011,   federal mandate that employer must provide a break in a private area that is not a bathroom for a mom to express milk for an infant up to one year of age.


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Keeping Abreast of Breast Milk Facts (Pedcast)

Anne Gessner, lactation expert, discusses breast pumps, breast milk collection, storage, and handling. Enroll in breast milk 101 today!



Unlisted, Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk. American Academy of Pediatrics, Feb. 2005. Web. 5 July 2010 .

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*By listening to this pedcast, you are agreeing to Doc Smo’s terms and conditions.

All Rights Reserved.