Breastfeeding twins is something that not many moms get to experience. It is a very special and unique experience that takes some time to master. If your twins have arrived early, you will most likely begin learning how to breastfeed with the help of a hospital team. Once you and your babies have gone through the steps to learn how to breastfeed individually, the nurses and lactation consultants will be able to help you simultaneously breastfeed your twins. When you head home from the hospital, don’t be surprised if your babies don’t stick to a schedule. Stick with it and you will find a rhythm at home that works for you.
Here are some breastfeeding tips and tricks to help you to feel prepared and make the process go a little smoother:
Don’t worry about schedules. When you are first getting the hang of breastfeeding your twins, don’t worry about implementing a strict schedule. Although schedules are a life-saver later down the road with twins, you want to make sure you are building a strong foundation. Just learn to read your babies signs and listen to their cues. This will take the pressure off while you are all learning. Just be in the moment.
Be consistent. Although you are not worrying about a schedule at this point, do try to be consistent. Whether it is your nighttime routine, or your personal approach to breastfeeding your twins, find something that works and master it. For example, try to aim for a similar bedtime each night.
Have a feeding station for mom. Don’t forget that it takes a lot of water and calories to produce enough breastmilk to feed both of your babies. Make sure that you are not forgotten in the process. A great way to make sure you are getting the fuel that you require is to set up a feeding station that is within arms’ reach of where you breastfeed your twins. This can include water bottles, granola bars, apples and any other snack or drink that is easy to enjoy while you are breastfeeding your twins. You may also want to consider having a feeding station as well as a diaper changing station on each level of your home to make things easier.
Get help from the pros. If you are having trouble figuring out breastfeed your twins, get help from the professionals. In the US, Breastfeeding consultations are now covered by most major insurance providers. Be sure to reach out to your insurance company and ask questions so you can fully understand the extent of your benefits. The lactation consultants can help you troubleshoot any problems you might be having. Also, it may be beneficial to try different lactation consultants. Each has a slightly different approach.
Use receiving blankets to position your babies. When you are breastfeeding two babies at once on a twin-specific nursing pillow, it can be hard to get your little ones into that perfect position. Try using rolled up receiving blankets behind their necks and backs to keep them on.
Try going braless. In the beginning, it is hard to juggle everything when breastfeeding your twins. The last thing you need is a tricky nursing bra to get in the way. You may want to try going braless and skip wearing a shirt. Or you can just rollup or unbutton your shirt.
It may take some time, but in the end you will find your own rhythm. Use these breastfeeding twins tips and tricks to figure out what suits you and your babies.
By Joanna Venditti – Nesting Story