Which soother shape is the best for your child?
Round, symmetrical or orthodontic - you may not be the one who gets to choose your child's soother. Many children don't just accept the soother they're given but take their time to find the exact shape that suits their needs the best.
However, there is good reason to familiarise yourself with the three most common soother shapes, the material they are made of and the shape of the soother shield. There are advantages and disadvantages to all of them, so should you get a say in which teat to choose, it's a good idea to make it an informed decision.
The classic choice
In the context of soothers, the round latex soother is the classic choice. It is typically recommended by midwives because it is the most similar to the breast in both shape and softness. The baby therefore wraps its tongue around the soother in the same way as it would the breast. This helps to practice the technique the baby needs to get the milk flowing when breastfeeding.
The round latex teat is therefore a good choice if the baby is breastfeeding and there is no family history of latex allergy. In fact, the latex soother part can, in rare cases, cause an allergic reaction if the child is predisposed to it. In that case, it is recommended to choose a silicone soother, which is a harder but also purer and more durable material.
While the round soother is recommended by midwives, it will rarely be the dentist's favourite. The round stem can cause soother bite, especially if the baby continues to use the soother long after teething. However, the Lullaby Planet round soother differs from other round soothers in that the part of the stem that rests on the gums is flat. This makes it more similar to the other two types of soothers and less likely to develop soother bite.
If teeth could talk
What would the dentist recommend? The dentist will point to the dental soother, which with its curved top and flat bottom supports the palate and allows the tongue to move and develop motor skills. At the same time, as mentioned above, it is flat at the end of the stem, reducing the risk of developing soother bite.
A popular compromise
The last type of soother is the symmetrical one, which contains the best of all worlds: it has the flat handle and the round shape. This makes it currently the most popular soother choice. On the negative side, it's not round enough for the tongue to wrap around it, and it doesn't support the palate or leave room for the tongue.
Which soother is right for your baby depends largely on the development you want to support or prevent. If, for whatever reason, the baby is not breastfed, the obvious choice would be the dental one. If breastfeeding is going well, the symmetrical or orthodontic could also be a good choice. However, if breastfeeding is difficult or you want to offer the baby a soother before breastfeeding is well established, you could opt for the round so that the baby can practice his breastfeeding technique and avoid sucking confusion. That is, the confusion that can arise when the soother and breast are not handled in the same way.
Have you chosen the shape of the soother? Then we can move on to the shield.
The shield is there to prevent the baby from swallowing the soother. The soother shield comes in many different shapes, and generally speaking, the smaller the better, as long as it can't be swallowed. This is because a heavy shield puts unnecessary strain on the gums and therefore on the teeth, which need to be able to grow vertically. At the same time, an elongated/butterfly shield distributes the weight better and is therefore preferable. In addition, an elongated lightweight shield will also typically take up less of the face, so neither skin nor nose is covered. It is important that the shield covers the skin as little as possible to avoid rashes in the moist area under the shield. Therefore, choose a shield with large air holes in the shield through which the skin can breathe.
An additional advantage of the elongated shield is that the child does not have to exert unnecessary effort to hold the soother in his mouth. A shield that is heavy at the top towards the nose tends to tip forward, causing the soother to fall out of the mouth. The child must therefore suck extra hard on the soother to keep it in the mouth.
How do you choose the right soother for your baby?
If you're now so exhausted by the many considerations involved in choosing the right soother for your baby that you're just hoping that baby will make the big decision for himself, then Lullaby Planet's StarterBox could be the solution.
The StarterBox contains one of each of the three soother types. In addition, the shield of the Lullaby Planet pacifier is very light, with no ring or other unnecessary weight. There are large air holes on both sides to allow the skin to breathe and space for the nose to allow the baby to breathe easily. After all, the most important thing is a happy baby, where parents can see the smile and beautiful face 😊