AIM AND OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to compare the effects of mother’s milk, sucrose and pacifier use to overcome pain during painful interventions to the newborns on the crying time and pain. BACKGROUND: Various non-pharmacological methods are used to overcome the pain associated with painful interventions with newborns. DESIGN: A prospective, randomised, controlled study involved 120 newborns in Turkey. METHODS: The population consisted of healthy newborns hospitalised in the gynaecology clinics of Trabzon Delivery and Children’s Diseases hospital between February 2007-January 2008. The newborns who had blood sampling by heel stick were divided into four groups: mother’s milk, sucrose, pacifier and control groups with 30 newborns in each. Data collection was performed using an information form on the newborn characteristics, which was developed by the researchers in the light of literature, clinical IR ear thermometer ET1 for temperature measurement, OXIMAX N-65 Pulse oxymeter for oxygen saturation and heart rate and neonatal infant pain scale for the measurement of the behavioural responses of newborns. Results. No differences were determined between the groups for heart rate and oxygen saturation in the newborns during painful interventions (p > 0.05). Sucrose followed by pacifier was the most effective method of reducing the crying time in the newborns. CONCLUSION: The results indicate that all three practices reduce the behavioural responses to pain at a higher rate than in the control group. RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: Health care personnel should perform painful interventions to the newborns while the babies are held by their mothers and during the procedure use of sucrose should be the primary choice.