advertisement
18 March 2009

Early pacifier use linked to shorter breastfeeding

Mothers who want to breastfeed their baby successfully may want to hold off on giving their infant a pacifier, new research from Denmark shows.

0

Mothers who want to breastfeed their baby successfully may want to hold off on giving their infant a pacifier, new research from Denmark shows.

Drs Hanne Kronborg and Michael Vaeth of the University of Aarhus found that women who gave their infant a pacifier in the first weeks of life were less likely to continue breastfeeding their babies.

In Denmark, registered nurses visit newborns and their families soon after the baby is discharged from the hospital. To investigate whether early breastfeeding technique and pacifier use might affect breastfeeding success, the researchers had health visitors specially trained in breastfeeding counseling visit 570 mother-baby pairs.

At the visit, the nurse observed the mother breastfeeding. If the mother was not using an effective technique (for example, the baby wasn't firmly "latched on" to the breast), the nurse provided feedback, guided the mother to use a more effective technique, and then observed a second session.

At the first visit, which occurred an average of eight days after the babies left the hospital, half of the mothers were having breastfeeding difficulty, most frequently with positioning the baby or latching on.

Problems associated with sucking and milk transfer
While these problems were not associated with how long the mother ultimately breastfed her child, problems with sucking and milk transfer were, according to the report in the medical journal Birth.

Correcting a mother's breastfeeding technique at the nurse visit did not have any influence on duration of breastfeeding, the researchers found.

"Prolonged guidance may be necessary if correction is needed," they say. It's also possible, they add, that "ideal or rigid" recommendations of how women should breastfeed could make women feel less confident, and thus undermine her breastfeeding success.

Nearly two-thirds of the women reported giving their baby a pacifier. Pacifier use was associated with a shorter duration of breastfeeding, independent of breastfeeding technique.

Use of the pacifier "should be avoided in the first weeks after birth by mothers who want to breastfeed," the researchers conclude. – (Reuters Health, march 2009)

 
NEXT ON HEALTH24X
advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Are you sure? »

Aid your digestion What are digestive disorders?

Are you really constipated?

Many people think that if they do not have two or more bowel movements every single day of their lives they are constipated. This is patently not true, writes DietDoc.

True of False? »

SEE: How anaphylactic shock affects your body

Stop believing these 10 allergy myths

Do you still believe that hay fever is caused by hay? Or that food allergies are really common? No, and no again. We bust 10 myths about allergies.