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How do I get my child to give up the pacifier?

Although it might seem far away now, there will come a time when you want your child to give up their pacifier. A difficult task, especially if your child is very attached to the pacifier. How do you deal with this? We’d like to give you some tips. A little help.

When to start pacifier weaning

If you notice that your child is biting on their pacifier, we recommend that you immediately start to wean your child off of the pacifier. Chances are that your child won’t want to. So, make sure you take it one step at a time. If your child doesn’t bite on the pacifier (yet), we recommend starting to wean at around two years of age.

Always check the pacifier for damage

As soon as your child starts teething, it’s important to check the pacifier on a daily basis. To do so, firmly pull the sucking area and check if you see any damage. If you see damage, immediately throw away the pacifier. Don’t see any damage? Then we recommend replacing the pacifier every six weeks.

Tips for giving up the pacifier

  • Follow the 15-day step-by-step plan in the Difrax “Giving up your pacifier” book. This will teach your child how to give up the pacifier in a fun and playful manner.
  • Don’t be too fast or too strict. Take it one step at a time. 
  • Decide when your child can and can’t have the pacifier, like during bedtime but not while playing. 
  • Explain the importance of giving up the pacifier. You can tell your child that it’s better for their teeth and that your child is getting too old to use a pacifier. 
  • Choose a quiet period, so not around a birthday or holiday. During hectic times, your child might need the comfort of a pacifier more. 
  • Think of a farewell ritual and replace the pacifier with a cuddly toy or a doll. 
  • Attach a cloth or cuddly toy to the pacifier. This will make the removal of the pacifier less stressful.

A little help

The "Giving up your pacifier" book

Getting your child to give up their pacifier can be challenging. To offer you a little help, together with medical experts, Difrax developed the popular “Giving up your pacifier” book. This book contains a 15-day step-by-step plan that helps children to say goodbye to their much-loved pacifier. On the last day of the journey, your child is asked to send its pacifier to Soo Soo, the pacifier fairy. You can download the book for free or you can order the hardcover version (with some nice extras) in the online store. 

José (mother of Niels, three years old): “Niels was mainly biting his pacifier. Soo Soo, the pacifier fairy, made weaning super easy.” 

The “Giving up your pacifier” book

Helping parents parent