Practical advice for choosing and cleaning the pacifier

Source: Pixabay

How to choose and clean the pacifier

How to choose the pacifier, how to clean it, until when to use it: the answers to the most common questions of mom and dad.

In this article

  • which pacifier to choose
  • how to clean the pacifier
  • when to change the pacifier
  • when to stop using the pacifier

How to clean the pacifier?

How to clean the pacifier? In the first three months, the pacifier must be sterilized at least once a day. There is no need to sterilize it every time the baby puts it in his mouth, unless it falls to the ground or gets dirty; if, on the other hand, it remains between his sheets, it can be given back to him without problems. If the pacifier falls and we do not have the possibility to sterilize it, it is sufficient to wash it with running water; wrong to clean it in the mouth of mum and dad: although saliva contains mildly antibacterial substances, it must be considered that numerous bacteria are also contained in the mouth! (Read also: licking baby pacifier, yes or no?)

Which pacifier to choose?

Which pacifier to choose? Surely it is better to buy a one-piece type, as it is more difficult to break. As for the shape, at the beginning the icing one could be advisable, which is more similar to the nipple, later a model with an anatomical teat, which better adapts to the structure of the palate, is perhaps more suitable.

"It is also true, however, that there is no scientific evidence which lead to prefer one model rather than another: the only rule then could be to choose a model suitable for the age group of the child (which is indicated on the package) "comments the neonatologist.


  1. The pacifier should not be demonized, but it should not be used as a breast substitute, which for the child is the first source not only of nourishment, but also of comfort.
  2. It should not be given to the child as a 'stopper' for each of his cries, but it is always advisable to try to understand the reason for the crying and try to remedy it in another way.
  3. Don't leave it in your mouth on every occasion: the more often you use it, the harder it might be to get used to it!

When to change the pacifier?

When to change it? When it looks worn. To avoid having to change it very often, it would be advisable to have 2-3 of the same ones available, so the child always feels it as familiar.

When to stop using the pacifier?

When to stop using it? At around 12-15 months it would be advisable to start unaccustoming it. It is true that some abandon it spontaneously when they begin to take an interest in the world around them, but there are others who at 3-4 years still go around with a pacifier in their mouth.

The important thing is to choose a moment of tranquility, in which there are no tensions, such as the arrival of a little brother, entering the kindergarten or a move. To make the pacifier abandonment less sudden, at first it can be left alone for bedtime.

Pacifier to the newborn yes or no?

Read also Stop the pacifier

Consultation by Donata Clerici, neonatologist, former Head of the Neonatal Pathology Department at the Clinic in our city.

Read also: Which pacifier to choose?

Updated on 22.01.2022

  • pacifier
  • advice to parents
  • teething
  • to cry
add a comment of Practical advice for choosing and cleaning the pacifier
Comment sent successfully! We will review it in the next few hours.