Here’s a story that’s getting a lot of press as of late:
Researchers report that they found a wide range of disease-causing bacteria, fungus and mold on pacifiers that young children had been using.
They added that pacifiers can often grow a slimy coating of bacteria — called a biofilm — that actually alters the normal bacteria in a baby or toddler’s mouth. That biofilm can spur inflammation and potentially increase the risk of developing gastrointestinal problems such as colic or even ear infections.
While this article may be a bit alarming – especially for all of you new parents out there – OHSU safety expert Dr. Ben Hoffman, who was also interviewed, puts the information into perspective:
“The majority of things you’re going to find on a pacifier are things we’ll find on our clothes, normal human flora,” said Hoffman. “It’s not a reason to demonize pacifiers if people find them useful.”
Dr. Hoffman directs the safety center at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. It’s a great resource for parents old and new. The center offers car seat safety tips, information on household safety and much more.
Go ahead and pay their Web site a visit.