Breast feeding twins(17 Posts)
I'm currently breastfeeding 3 (twins & twin 1) but soon to be 4 when twin 2 can start learning to latch (he's ill in NICU).
I tandem a lot. I prefer tandem it comes more easier to me than one at a time. My eldest twins were ebf on demand up until September just before my 2nd set arrived (early) and they pretty much had the same schedule but occassionally one was hungrier than the other. As my eldest twins are 14 months, they still breastfeed mainly morning and night and if I'm home (back and forth to hospital atm). Otherwise they have b/m in their mOmma straw cups. Twin 1 is fed on demand so she comes first when it comes to feeding and same when Twin 2 starts bf.
This works for us we mainly go with the flow and have no bf routines. They feed when they're hungry as and when.
Try a few approaches and find one that fits you and your family.
I almost ebf my twins (top up of a few ounces each early evening to give me a break!) but against all the advice I was given, I chose to feed them separately. This did mean that I spent an awful lot of time feeding, but I felt that as two individuals, they might not be hungry at the same time! (I also felt that it would be the only time each twin would have some one to one time).
At night I would have one in with me, feed lying down until we both went to sleep, then when the other woke up, would put Twin 1 back in the cot, get Twin 2 out and in with me, feed lying down until we both went to sleep, and so it went on. There were only a few times while they were little that they were both fed at the same time and very rarely during the day.
Congrats on your second set of twins - the thought that it could happen to me is what has stopped me trying for another baby!
I have 2 older dcs (5 and 3) and have ebf my twins (now 3 months) without problem so its doable. Have no help at home. Tandem feed so have time between feeds to go out, do shopping, play with kids, etc, have too much on my mind to designate a particular side to each baby, so its whoever is nearest goes on first!
I think it's easier, no bottles, no stuff to buy and I always just about fed them at once. If one woke in the night I woke the other and fed both. Good luck with it.
hi there, congratulations! well im in the minority as I couldn't get on with tandem feeding, although when I was pregnant I thought it was how I would manage... what worked for me was an electric pump- it got my milk suppy up and ment my husband could bottle feed one at night while I breast fed the other... I got a nice stock of milk in the freezer too so I could go out for a much needed break.
Sitting here feeding my one year old twins - down to just evening and morning and night feeds now. I don't think you'll find it that much harder than one, although as others said with your older kids it would be good to have house help at first. Ours got in a 3/4 hour routine from being in scbu boot camp which definitely helped. Had to resist a bit of pressure from HV s etc who wanted me to top up (one had slow weight gain) but doctor and hospital consultant backed me up. I found a foam u-shaped pillow good in early days, then just a soft v-shaped. Usually tandem feed in football hold. Good luck!
Pretty much with Mandy21 - I breast fed my twins until just before their 1st birthday. For me, the main thing was a really good breast feeding pillow (twins uk do a good one although I wouldn't personally recommend the inflatable version - it literally let me down on a couple of occasions before I switched to the foam one!).
Personally I found tandem feeding with them both in rugby ball holds the easiest. Gave me a proper break between feeds and meant I was never stuck mid feed with one whilst the other screamed at me from across the room. I also chose to always feed on the same side (less to remember, but it did mean I had different sized boobs for a while!) and fed both when the first started to get hungry (I found this established a good routine very quickly). But try a couple of different techniques to find the right pattern for you.
As you'll probably know from previous experience it doesn't always settle down in to a pattern immediately - I had to do EBF and top ups for nearly two weeks until I got going - but I found bf much much easier than bottles once I got going and really never looked back!
I think it's possible! I am bf 5 week old twins with v little problems and have a 3 year old DD as well. I'm home alone with all three most of the time - DH has been away with work for 3 weeks since they've arrived... It's do able and I can't be chained to the sofa as I need to do pre school runs, walk the dog and amuse DD. I tandem feed (and wake the sleeping twin at night) too, but they have to take it in turns in the evening as they cluster feed (ie CONSTANT feed) just as DD needs feeding, bathing and getting to bed.... I bf DD until she was two (she had solids from 6 months obviously!) so I felt and feel fairly confident about bf. I was told to top up with formula for my small twin, but ignored that advice after a week and she's jumped up a centile line
Sorry I can't count, you have 4 already (even more in awe )
I breastfed twins until they were 1, exclusively breastfed (apart from solids too) until about 7.5 months at which point we tried to introduce ebm in a bottle.
They were my first babies (you have my upmost respect for wanting to do this with 3 children already) so I didn't know every different, took a while for them to get a good latch (they were premature so we used nipple shields for 5 or 6 weeks) but I had quite alot of milk and they gained weight well once they were out of special care. I had masses of help from the midwives on the unit and the community midwife who came to visit when we were allowed home.
I never got the hang of tandem feeding, I would feed one whilst the other was in a bouncy chair that I rocked with my foot and sang! Seemed to work. In the early days it was time consuming but very quickly they got to be quite efficient feeders. They would both be done in 20 mins.
I also "dedicated" one boob to each baby - twin 1 was always the right, twin 2 was always the left. Worked for me (and I didn't end up with a lopsided chest!). I think that helped with them establishing the latch, always being in the same position.
I also used to feed them both - always (until about 7 months when DS started sleeping through). In the night, if one woke for a feed, I woke the other up too. At least that way you were guaranteed (well kind of) a bit of a stretch for sleep. I also had help in the night - I would be feeding 1, but H would do the nappy change / settling for Number 2. Meant that although we were both up each time they needed a feed, it was only for about 20-30mins.
I've got twins who are 8&1/2 months old and ebf (apart from solids now obviously!). They're my only children, took a while for my milk to come in and some concerns re weight gain so did mixed feeding initially, then dropped bottles. For the frost couple of months I was mostly on the sofa strapped into a feeding cushion and eating (you need to eat and drink loads) - definitely get help with your older children if you can. There's quite a bit of advice about breastfeeding twins e.g. Booklets from TAMBA and La Leche League but I think you need to be pretty determined/stubborn as HVs etc aren't necessarily that knowledgeable about this. In the long run I think it's easier as no bottles to sterilise and make up esp in the middle of the night. Good luck and congratulations!
I know 3 mums who are bf'ing twins and all have found it easier than they were expecting.
I bf DS1 and am now mix feeding 4 month old DTs (2 months ebf with expressed milk top ups, then DS1 in hospital so started bottle at 5:30 to help bedtime go more easily for all 3).
First month was pretty devoted to establishing feeding and I was very lucky to have help with DS1 - without that not sure it would have been possible for me to have enough/any rest.
I've found tandem feeding them the best for me especially at night when I will wake the other twin once one wants feeding. I got a special twin pillow from another twin mum which I've found invaluable.
I was very lucky to have supportive midwives who came every other day for about a month as weight gain wasn't great at first so I ended up topping up with expressed milk. I'm constantly amazed at the poor mums on here who have midwives and health visitors who insist on formula for far less weight loss than we had!
So my advice would be get help with other children if you can and even if feeding seems to be going ok at first try to build in a couple of expressing sessions to make sure you have lots of milk for when they want more.
Also helpful to meet/see other twin mums breast feeding so maybe join a group if you're not already part of one.
Good luck - when it works and then I have two contented faces smiling up at me it's a lovely feeling. But they also give me big smiles after bottles too!
Not me but my two friends both managed it. They did the rugby ball hold and one advocated sitting on the sofa with the cushion removed so she was lower and the twins were at the sofas height. One managed ebf but the other supplemented one baby with a bottle at night. Tough but they survived! Good luck. I have twin sisters and lived in fear.....Two sets - you must be a real pro already!
So I bottle fed my first twins, and then breast fed my 2 other sons. I am now expecting twins again, and I don't know whether I will be able to cope with breast feeding them them both. Any advice?
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