elevated close up view of a baby (6-12 months) sleeping with a dummy in its mouth


A pacifier has many names: soother, dummy, or binky.

Whatever the name, there is a common purpose – to soothe a child using a sucking action. Pacifiers are used to relax a baby and possibly put them to sleep which is why their use is so popular with parents.

Types of Pacifiers

From the conception of pacifiers centuries ago, pacifiers have evolved into more healthy soothers used today. Pacifiers are made from rubber, plastic or silicone and the basic components include a flexible nipple, a mouth shield, as well as a handle. Pacifiers are made in a wide variety of colors and some may even light up in order to stimulate babies. Different shapes and sizes of pacifiers are relative for different ages. There are newborn pacifiers for 0-2 months, which relates to a size 0, go up to a size 3 which is for babies eighteen months and beyond. Of course, there are colors, such as pink and blue, to distinguish between pacifiers for girls and boys. There are often ones with designs such as cars, flowers and so on. There are also pacifiers that have theme character designs.

The types of pacifiers differ in respect to the materials they are made of, the shape of the nipple as well as the overall design. Commonly silicone is the material that is used for the nipple of the pacifier. Sometimes latex nipples are still made but this is not as common.

Orthodontic pacifiers are pacifiers that are specially shaped. They have a flat bottom and it dips in the bottom. It is controversial as to whether these pacifiers actually have any dental benefits over others.

Another type of pacifier is a teething pacifier. These pacifiers can be frozen for pain relief for those babies who are teething. Oftentimes they also have textured nipples, making it enticing for teething babies to chew on.

Brand Names of Pacifiers

While there are many brands of pacifiers available to be purchased, there are a few that are more popular than others. Top pacifier brands include Avent, Nuk, Disney Baby and Playtex. Avent pacifiers range from newborn to eighteen months plus. They come in a variety of colors incorporating different designs. They also have a nighttime line of pacifiers which have glow-in-the-dark handles, making them easier to find and put back in the baby’s mouth in the dark. Avent also offers a “Freeflow” line which have six holes in the pacifier shield that allows the baby’s skin to breathe while sucking.

Nuk offers different sizes of pacifiers depending on the age of the child. A popular type of Nuk pacifiers is the “Orthostar” line. This line claims to be dentist-endorsed with a thinner neck, a natural shaped nipple and is adapted to the baby’s mouth cavity. Nuk offers both silicone and latex pacifiers. There are many animal print Nuk pacifiers and many of their pacifiers come in bright and bold colors. Many of these pacifiers come in packs of two.

Playtex is also a popular manufacturer of pacifiers. Playtex makes pacifiers for children up to toddlers with many variations for each age group. There are also different colors and designs of pacifiers that are made from both silicone and latex. The “Binky” line offers pacifiers with a soft edge for babies when teething and has a “Snug’N Place” ring to help baby have a restful sleep.

Price of Pacifiers

Pacifiers are one of the least expensive baby items that can be purchased. However, it is very useful to buy a few different varieties and brands as babies typically have preferences. Another reason to have more than one on hand is that pacifiers are often misplaced or lost – a situation that is not ideal if the baby is dependent on pacifiers to calm down and sleep. Pacifiers start in price at about one or two dollars and may go up to as much as five dollars. Pacifiers with different features such as glow-in-the-dark and orthodontic specific may be more expensive than more simple pacifiers. Often pacifiers are available individually or in packages of two. Packs of two are typically more economical than those sold separately. Pacifiers themselves are the cheap items, pacifier accessories such as cleansing wipes, pacifier clips, pacifier covers and storage bags are more expensive.