We’re all witnesses to the undeniable power of pacifiers to calm babies in distress or even young children who are already flying high in their mid-tantrums. But there’s something every parent or caregiver should know.
Aside from the problems pacifiers post to your child’s teeth formation, scientists report that under the microscope, a vast range of disease-causing bacteria, molds and fungi are actually calling pacifiers their very own home.
It’s not unusual for parents to pop a pacifier back into their infant’s mouth after it has been dropped onto the floor.
It’s cheap medicine to discard your pacifiers every two weeks, even if they’re cleaned and sterilized after every use.
Dr. R. Thomas Glass and team at the Oklahoma State University did a small study of seven new pacifiers and ten used pacifiers taken from healthy infants. Though all of them looked almost squeaky clean, five of the used pacifiers were slightly contaminated, and the other five were heavily contaminated with Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumonia, and fungus. In total, the researchers found more than 40 different species of bacteria on the pacifiers.
“It may look solid in your hand,” Dr. Glass, said. But when we look at it under the scanning electron microscope, it looks like a sponge.”
No other studies have proven that a dirty pacifier can actually lead to actual disease, but experts agree that parents & caregivers should replace them monthly.
“It is cheap medicine to discard your pacifiers every two weeks,” added Dr. Glass.