Breastfeeding twins is awesome and you can totally do this.
I’m starting out with some cheerleading because I hear so much negativity about it. Sure, it can be hard work, but it is not some impossible task only for superwomen. My twins breastfed until they were about two and half – and I’m a normal lady (honest). So, here are a few tips on breastfeeding twins. And please do ask if you have further questions 🙂
1. Tandem feed
When your babies are very young, you will need to tandem feed them because they will both want to feed so much of the time. But as they get older, you can go with the flow. Feed them separately or at the same time – whatever works for you.
2. Give yourself time
Starting out breastfeeding twins can be tricky because multiples are more likely to be premature or have other complications. But try not to be too discouraged by a slower start: give yourself lots of time to get the feeding established. If the start involves some bottles or feeding tubes, it does not signal the end of breastfeeding. Think marathon, not sprint.
3. It is ok to persevere!
This is related to my previous point – if you really want to nurse your twins, it is totally valid to put lots of time and effort into it. Sometimes well-meaning people can discourage you from putting in the effort (they think they are preserving your sanity). But if you want to do it, don’t let the negativity put you off.
4. Latching gets easier with time
Getting two little babies to latch on properly is difficult at first. But it truly does get easier as you learn, and as your babies learn. If the latch is sore, unlatch and try again. I know, it is tempting to just push on through the pain. After all, it took you twenty minutes to arrange the cushions. But keep in mind that your baby will feed more efficiently with a good latch. And nobody wants cracked nipples. Believe me.
5. Soak up the cuddles
One of my favourite things about breastfeeding twins was knowing that each precious baby was getting lots of cuddles with mama. Having twin newborns was beyond busy, and so often I was overwhelmed and torn in different directions. Was I giving each baby what they needed? It was so reassuring to know that they were both being cuddled and fed a lot.
6. Learn to ignore the staring
Yep, people sometimes look at you as if tandem feeding is some sort of freakshow. But that’s ok – you have just made their day a little more interesting. And you know it is just natural for you and your babies. Breastfeeding twins really does become the easier option as the babies continue to grow: no bottles to carry around and clean; instant comfort when they are tired or sad. And it is so cute when they feed and hold hands – sweeeet…
7. You can make enough milk!
Breastfeeding works on a supply and demand basis, so two babies produce enough milk for two babies. But it is so easy for people to knock your confidence about this. If there are issues gaining weight, this is what I suggest: check the babies are latching on as well as possible and give them lots and lots of time feeding for four days solid. But the chances are, you can make enough milk. If you need advice on breastfeeding twins, try www.kellymom.com or a trained lactation consultant. Not just your midwife, your paediatrician, your mom, your best friend, your best friend’s mom…. So obviously feel free to ignore me! But I mention it because had so much bad advice from people who were not properly informed about breastfeeding (even medical professionals), and it takes a while to gain the confidence to ignore it.
So, a little bit of cheerleading for you, ladies. Breastfeeding twins can take lots of time and effort, but it is also so so precious, and so so possible.
Supporting breastfeeding mamas is a passion of mine:
Are there more questions I can help you with?
Do you have more questions about twins (feeding or otherwise)?
Please ask! Leave me a comment below, or email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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