Many babies cannot get themselves to sleep without a soother. The real problem is when your baby wakes up the soother has fallen out and they can’t find it. What many people do is attach a chain to the soother, although many others have concerns about the soother chain getting caught around the baby’s neck. The best thing to do is teach your baby to sleep without a soother.
Weaning a baby off a soother is never easy. You’ll need to prepare yourself!!! With persistence it is possible though. Try following these steps and see if they help:-
Weaning Baby Off Soother Step 1:
As your baby is falling asleep, but before she actually falls asleep, remove the soother from her mouth. Then place your finger under her chin and press firmly to stop the sucking movement of her tongue. If she awakes just say shhh, shhh gently to her. If she really starts to search for her soother give it back to her. Then again as she really starts to fall asleep remove the soother from her mouth and press firmly under her chin. Removing the soother needs to be repeated until she actually falls asleep without it. Be prepared this can take a while but it is very important she falls asleep without the soother.
Weaning Baby Off Soother Step 2:
After a few days as your baby starts to fall asleep quicker without her soother (don’t worry this will happen eventually!), stop giving her the soother going to bed. Just sit beside her and say shhh, shh and maybe rub her gently (but always stop rubbing before she goes asleep as you do not want to replace the soother with rubbing).
Weaning Baby Off Soother Step 3:
When your baby wakes up at night while being weaned off the soother, enter the room and say shh, shh. It may be a good idea to rub her hand or temple. If this does not get her back to sleep, give her the soother but always remove it before she goes to sleep.
In a recent case with a client in Cork I used this method and within a few days the baby was sleeping through the night without the soother. While this does take time and persistence it does work in most cases and does not involve using crying techniques.