Breastfeeding Twins at Home with Help
Nursing one baby for the first time is hard enough, but the thought of nursing two babies can feel overwhelming.
It can take some time to figure out and get used to, but nursing both twins at once is not only a big time-saver, but a great way for both babies to bond with each other and you all at once.
Once you have mastered nursing one baby at a time, you can try feeding babies together. Depending on if your babies were born full-term or premature, (in which case you must take their adjusted age into account), only you will know when you are ready to try.
Make sure you have help when starting breastfeeding twins together. Help after having twins may come in many shapes and forms. Most likely, you will be getting help from nurses and possibly a doula or a lactation consultant while in the hospital. Take advantage of that help while you are there. They are the experts and are there to make sure you are able to successfully feed your babies.
You may also have help from a spouse, significant other, family member or friend. Get them involved and have them watch how the hospital staff and professionals are assisting you, so they can jump in once you do not have them around.
Get yourself comfortable, making sure you are using multiple pillows for support behind your back and under your twin-sized nursing pillow. Then ask your significant other or family member to pass you one baby at a time. Others can help by sitting beside you, helping position each baby so everyone is comfortable. It can be tricky to latch one baby without the other one popping off, so ask your helper to support the nursing baby while you latch the second.
Sometimes it can be helpful to add rolled up receiving blankets behind each baby’s head and neck, something that your helper can do. Sometimes arms and legs can be everywhere and get in the way, so let someone else help ensure that everyone is comfortable by adjusting the positions of all of those little limbs.
Because nursing twins at the same time can be a complicated process, ask your support team to take care of you, your home and other children, so that your focus can be on learning to feed your babies. You burn a lot of calories while nursing twins, so ask your significant other to bring you a drink and snack so you can replenish while nursing.
Once the first baby has finished nursing, ask your significant other to burp that baby while you finish nursing the second baby. Burping two at once is a little tricky and can take a while to master. It can make the process easier to only have to burp one baby until you feel comfortable.
You will want to keep track of how long each baby nursed and on which side. Having a white board where someone can jot down information for you can be very helpful. You may also want to have a binder with a chart inside to track and keep as an on-going log. This is information you will want to bring with you to your doctor appointments or a meeting with your lactation consultant.
With a little help nursing your twins at the same time is doable and can even be enjoyable. Before you know it, you will be ready to go solo!
By Joanna Venditti – Nesting Story