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No matter what you call it, paci, bobo or binky, a pacifier can be the key to a calm baby and a restful night’s sleep. But what is the best pacifier in 2020? There are a number of different pacifiers out there, and it can be hard to know where to start. Truthfully, the best pacifier is the one your baby likes, and some babies don’t take to pacifiers at all, which you can easily find out through trial and error. Luckily, pacifiers are generally affordable and can make all the difference in comforting a fussy baby, so experimenting is worth the time and money. Experts tend to agree.
“Pacifiers are soothing and, frankly, pacifying to a newborn or infant,” pediatrician and creator of Seattle Mama Doc blog Wendy Sue Swanson tells Parenting. “The sucking reflex is innate, and babies soothe and calm when sucking on a pacifier between feedings and during sleep initiation and periods of crying. They can be wonderful for infants and toddlers as they provide a way to calm and feel relaxed or at ease.”
What to Consider When Choosing a Pacifier
There are a few different factors to think about when choosing a pacifier, and you may want to purchase several to see what type your baby will take to. There are different pacifiers depending on whether you’re bottle-feeding or breastfeeding, and if you’re worried about a potential latex allergy, it’s smart to consider a silicone pacifier.
Because pacifiers are small and rely on your baby’s sucking to keep them in place, it’s also worth picking up a few pacifier clips. These clips help secure the pacifier to your baby’s clothes so it won’t drop to the floor if it falls out of your little one’s mouth. Plus, as babies get older, they will be able to put pacifiers back in their mouths on their own thanks to the pacifier clip.
Another important factor to consider is pacifier weaning. Eventually, your baby will have to stop using one, and this can be a challenging time for everyone. “Getting rid of them at six months is ideal,” advises Dr. Swanson. “I wouldn’t recommend a pacifier after 18 months of age. If pacifiers are used past 18 months, often they can worsen an overbite in children leading to bucked teeth, so making sure they are out can also protect a child’s mouth and beautiful smile!” Eventually, your baby will wean and find a way to self-soothe (there’s even a pacifier for that!).
Below, we’ve rounded up the 13 best pacifiers for your baby.
Best Overall: Philips Avent Soothie Pacifiers
Best for Preemies: Evenflo Feeding Balance Pacifier
Best for Newborn: Mam Orthodontic Pacifier
Best for Colic: Nuk Newborn Pacifier
Best for Breastfed: Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Pacifier
Best for Bottle-fed: Dr. Brown’s HappyPaci
Best Orthodontic: Chicco PhysioForma Orthodontic Pacifiers
Best for Teething: Razbaby Silicone Teether
Best with Cover: Doodle & Co. Pop Pacifier
Best for Lip Tie: Boon Jewl
Best with Lovey: WubbaNub Pacifier
Best for Nighttime: Nuk Glow in the Dark Pacifier
Best Novelty Pacifier: Mustachifier The Gentleman Mustache Pacifier