Pacifiers, Thumb Sucking, Breastfeeding, and Bottle Use: Oral Sucking Habits of Children with and without Phonological Impairment

Elise Baker, Sarah Masso, Sharynne McLeod, Yvonne Wren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
693 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Aims: The aim of this study was to describe the nutritive and non-nutritive oral sucking habits (breastfeeding, bottle use, pacifier/dummy/soother use, thumb/finger sucking) of preschoolers with and without phonological impairment, and to determine whether oral sucking habits are associated with presence and severity of phonological impairment. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of 199 Australian English-speaking preschoolers with and without phonological impairment. Preschoolers’ speech was directly assessed, and parents/caregivers completed a questionnaire. Chi square was used to examine relationships between oral sucking habits, and presence and severity of phonological impairment. Results: Based on caregiver report, 79.9% participants had been breastfed (33.3% for >12 months); 58.3% had used a pacifier (74.2% for ≥12 months); 83.9% had used a bottle (73.4% for >12 months), and 15.1% sucked their thumb/fingers. There was no association between a history of oral sucking and the presence and severity of phonological impairment. Conclusion: The majority of preschoolers had been breastfed and bottlefed, and more than half had used a pacifier. The findings support an understanding that phonological impairment is not associated with a history of nutritive and non-nutritive sucking habits. Research is needed to examine association between oral sucking habits and other types of speech sound disorder.Keywords: pacifiers, breastfeeding, thumb sucking, speech sound disorders, children
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-173
Number of pages9
JournalFolia Phoniatrica et Logopaedica
Volume70
Issue number3-4
Early online date5 Sep 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018

Keywords

  • Pacifiers
  • Breastfeeding
  • Thumb sucking
  • Speech sound disorders
  • Children

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