Using the dummy independently
From about 8 months of age, most babies can learn to put their own dummies in. This can be good if your baby needs a dummy to fall asleep or needs your help to put the dummy back in when it falls out during the night.
Here’s how to help your baby manage their own dummy:
- When you put your baby to bed, put their hand onto the dummy. Then guide the dummy into their mouth.
- Each time you have to put the dummy back in, make sure you put your baby’s hand onto the dummy. Then guide the dummy into their mouth, making sure they keep a hand on it.
It can take 3-4 nights or longer for babies to learn how to put the dummy back in by themselves.
Don’t use ribbons, strings or chains to attach a dummy to your child’s clothing, hand, neck or cot. Ribbons, strings and chains are strangulation risks.
Giving up the dummy
If your baby or older child depends on the dummy to settle and sleep, another option is to phase out the dummy. You can do this gradually by:
- using the dummy less when re-settling your child during the night
- using the dummy less for comforting during the day.