Monday, September 24, 2012

Pacifier impedes boys emotional development

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We bought a pacifier for Loureese a few weeks ago and boy, it made wonders. We saw on TV the benefits of having one and it certainly live up to its name. Since Loureese was crying most of the time we thought of giving it to her to end whatever ordeal she was going through. To top it off,  it simply pacify our baby in seconds. 

But scientist announced that not all babies are benefiting from pacifiers. Perhaps the girls are just okay having one but for but the boys, I guess not. Boys who are relying heavily on pacifiers can short-circuit their emotional growth.

Babies communicate in non-verbal cues like facial expressions before they start talking. They also mimic those cues and learn the emotions the cues are attach to. And so researchers from the University of Wisconsin evaluated over 100 kids and discovered that those six and seven-year old boys who used pacifiers heavily were worse in mimicking emotions expressed by faces on a video. The more than 600 college students were also interviewed and young men whose parents reported they relied on pacifiers scored lower on test measure empathy and the ability to evaluate the moods of others. As for the girls and young women, there's no difference at all in emotional maturity with regards to the use of pacifiers.

There are controversies whether the use of pacifiers have good benefits for babies. Some say pacifiers can inhibit breastfeeding, ear infection and dental problems. But the American Academy of Paediatrics says the use of pacifiers are okay as long as you don't offer one to a hungry baby. 

The researchers advised to limit the use of pacifiers during daytime especially for boys. I guess for Loureese we're not gonna do it for now. If we happen to have a baby boy in the future, I certainly believe it's good to know these things in advance.