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Breast or bottle??

(32 Posts)
MumofthreeandBean Wed 08-Feb-17 07:12:00

I am going to try and breastfeed, I fed my other 3 for varying lengths of time but I am concerned with how easy/hard it will be with twins.
I have bought a steriliser and bottles incase we need them.

Any advice would be great

PotteringAlong Wed 08-Feb-17 07:14:57

I don't have any advice but my sister breastfed her twins and so I know it's possible! I think the difference was that they were only semi-fed on demand; i.e. If one was hungry the other one got fed too to try and prevent near constant feeding.

VilootShesCute Wed 08-Feb-17 07:16:33

Lucky you having twins! I have a few friends who have had twins and they all breastfed fine and for a lot longer than I imagined them to be able to. Sorry I can't give you any practical tips, I hope someone will come and do that. Good luck!

MumofthreeandBean Wed 08-Feb-17 08:19:10

Thankyou, hoping a twin mummy pops along with practical advice

Diamondsandpears Wed 08-Feb-17 10:37:24

Keep eating to keep your energy up is advice I have heard for feeding multiples.

Streaky17 Wed 08-Feb-17 12:01:38

Are you on Facebook?
If so try the group breastfeeding twins and triplets UK.

It definitely seems possible... hints I've picked up so far are get a special pillow (tick), you need to feed lots early on so your body makes the right amount for two and eat lots of cake.

Whitelisbon Wed 08-Feb-17 12:11:32

I breastfed my dts until they were almost 2.
I fed semi on demand, once the first had finished their feed, dh would take them and do bum changes while I fed the second.
Mine had a boob each, so dts always fed from the left and dtd from the right.
I never quite managed to feed them both at the same time, so sometimes one would be screaming while I fed the other, they soon got used to it.
Practical stuff - make sure you have loads of snacks that can be eaten one handed. I lived on flapjacks, cereal bars, fruit, cake and chocolate. Eat and drink plenty. Lidded coffee cup was a godsend.
Get a feeding cushion - the sooner you can balance them on your knee no handed the easier it'll be.
The first 6 weeks were a blur of almost constant feeding, changing and crying (all of us!) And the elder dc were fairly feral at that point. It got much easier after 6 weeks ish, although I was extremely tempted to ff a few times at first.
It's definitely possible, but requires a lot of hard work and dedication.
I'll have a think and come back if there's anything else I can think of.

Streaky17 Wed 08-Feb-17 12:11:57

Your midwife/ hospital should be able to help too. I'm concerned if they deliver early and or c-section that it might make feeding difficult.

Hopefully as you have bf before you should be able to this time. Does it work like that?

CelticPromise Wed 08-Feb-17 12:16:13

I second the recommendation for that Facebook group, it's great.

Whyarentthere25hoursinaday Wed 08-Feb-17 12:35:45

I bf my twins. Agree that a v cushion is a must. Rugby ball hold very helpful too. At night always fed one at a time to make sure I didn't wake them unnecessarily. I was attempting to help them get through the night by doing this, and also when I was tired it was hard to handle them both at the same time.
I had a two year old at the time so just had to survive really! Just muddle through, you will be fine! Twins are so much fun and mine are now the best of friends.

MumofthreeandBean Wed 08-Feb-17 16:39:35

Thankyou all.
I did look for the group on Facebook, think I've joined it ...

I wonder if I've forgotton what to do feeding one baby let alone two, it's been 10 years!

Cadenza1818 Wed 08-Feb-17 18:13:52

Hi twin mum here. Had c section and early babies and breastfed for 9months. Would've carried on but they took to feeding for an hour each confused so I stopped.
I didn't feed on demand as I was told they needed feeding every 3hours. It did mean they had a good routine and were sleeping through from 3 months. I tried two at a time and didn't like it. Much harder to do in a cafe! Plus I liked the bonding sesh of one at a time. I did alternative breasts at each feed as my right boob was always more plentiful! Also in the first couple of weeks I pumped 5mins after a feed to increase supply. Something an American book recommended. I found little UK support bit that mayve changed jn the last 8 years. Good luck!

Heloise1982 Thu 09-Feb-17 07:29:36

I bf my twins, it is totally do-able! I had a c section and they were in special care for a while so it was a case of pumping / going over to feed them as often as I could at first. Getting established was tricky but I was glad I stuck with it. It's hard enough getting out the door with twins as it is without having to worrying about making up two sets of bottles in addition!

I never got on with feeding both at once. I would feed one then the other. It did mean that for the first 6 weeks or so there were days where I did basically nothing other than feed babies but it DOES get easier and they get so much quicker at it. It's especially worth it at night I think - by about 6 months their night feeds were down to about 5 minutes, so much easier than faffing about with bottles (though it does mean all the night feeds fall to you, which is tough.)

I would say tho that mine had a bottle before bed from the very first day home from hospital - I've had friends with bottle refusing babies and there was no way I was risking that with twins! I was also never precious about giving a bottle here and there through the day if they were both particular cranky at the same time / the toddler was kicking off / I was too exhausted and fed up to feed anymore.

I gradually started moving more and more to bottle feeding at around 9 months when I knew I'd be back at work soon and they were getting rather nippy anyway! But I kept bf at night until 11 months when we did a bit of sleep training and got rid of the night feeds at the same time.

Good luck!

Twinnypops Thu 09-Feb-17 19:48:38

If they're early (fairly likely with twins) they might have trouble latching on. I had three days of them not being able to latch until a nurse suggested using shields, which helped a lot. Tandem feeding is pretty tricky when you don't have someone to help put them on, although it ultimately saves a lot of time (especially if they're rubbish feeders like mine!). Definitely join the fb group, although be aware that there's quite a few women in there who are rather over zealous about breastfeeding :-) Give it a go, and don't be hard on yourself if it doesn't go as planned, it's tricky with one, let alone two x

BillyButtfuck Thu 09-Feb-17 19:53:17

Hello twin mum here.
I had an emergency C section at 36+6 and 1 taken to NICU and the other TCU. They were tube fed for 3 days a mix of breast milk and topped up with formula. After 3 days I was able to breastfed them myself and top up with formula through cup feeding.
I really tried my best but just didn't have enough milk. I felt really sad but had good support. After a week I was so tired and switched to bottle feeding and managed to get my supply up by pumping a lot and they were bottle fed breast milk until 12 weeks when we slowly moved onto formula.

Mermaid36 Thu 09-Feb-17 19:54:08

I'm breastfeeding twins!
My girls were born very prematurely, so I expressed for 12 weeks, then got them on the breast before getting them home.

They are now 10 months old and have never had formula, and they don't have bottles either (started to refuse them since leaving hospital).

I plan to feed until at least 18 months

Another recommendation for the Facebook group here too!

Surf25 Thu 09-Feb-17 20:48:44

I am breastfeeding my twins, they were born by section at 34 weeks due to twin 1 not having grown between our 32 and 34 week scans. I have breastfed our three older children and found that definitely helped give me more confidence. They were both in the neonatal unit so initially expressed and they had tube feeds then started feeding from me around day 5 and initially alternate tube feeds and breast feeds until they could manage all breast feeds. It is hard work but I enjoy it, and I do a mix of tandem feeding and feeding one at a time. Definitely get a good pillow and lansinoh and try to have a sports type water bottle within reach of you wherever you think you will do the majority of feeds e.g I have beside my bed and move it downstairs and I also often have some kind of easy to eat snack like flapjack/chocolate/banana/grapes especially to help give me a wee boost overnight. Doing all the feeds yourself can be quite relentless but I do everything at night as my dh sleeps in another room as he can't afford to be so tired in the job he does. It is definitely doable. You can always just give it a shot and see how it goes. Try not to put pressure on yourself about it, I was very conscious of that and it helped too. Not against ff at all and babies are now 8 weeks old so I would quite like them to take a bottle sometimes if possible and if I can't find the time/energy to express (I have three other children aged 7, 5 and 2) then I will use formula for that. Sorry this is long!

Cadenza1818 Thu 09-Feb-17 21:09:23

Ah yes, surf25 reminded me...I used to eat like a horse bfeeding and also had a pint of water with each feed in the early days. At night I'd have path, sandwiches, fruitcake, all sorts! It's hungry work feeding two babies! Also while j remember, I pumped and gave a bottle of breastmilk from 2 weeks in. It meant that dh did the 10pm feed which eased tiredness!

Surf25 Thu 09-Feb-17 21:22:50

Yes cadenza I would like to pump and give a bottle once in the day/have the flexibility for dh to give a bottle, and in NICU was pumping loads, but seem to have got out of the way of it! Also can't quite work out when to do it! Do you remember when you would do it? Hard to know when to fit it in to the day and with two of them it's not the same as with one when you can just give them one boobs and express from the other!!!

snowsuit Thu 09-Feb-17 21:36:45

I am mixed feeding mine, they get breast with formula top ups in the day, and just breast at night. I always fed them together for the first couple of months. Now that they are a bit bigger and quicker I feed them separately. I mixed fed DD1 too, the only difference being that I felt v guilty about it and resisted giving formula for a long time even though she wasn't really putting on weight. Mixed feeding works really well for me and I can imagine going on like this for ages. I guess i just want to give the other side of all the stories about even the tiniest bit of formula being the end of bf. It's been the opposite for me, has allowed me to carry on. Anyway I hope you find what works for you. Good luck!

Twinnypops Thu 09-Feb-17 21:55:39

I'll second mixed feeding - it doesn't have to be all or nothing, and it allows you to have a much needed break! If you do bottle feed then definitely get a prefect prep.

MumofthreeandBean Fri 10-Feb-17 04:56:08

Thankyou everyone, you have all been really helpful x

Cadenza1818 Fri 10-Feb-17 16:33:56

Surf25 I tended to pump after a morning feed as my milk always seemed more then. I'd also then pump just before going to bed between 7-9pm.

namechangedtoday15 Mon 13-Feb-17 17:25:19

Hi there, you've had lots of good advice already so can only add my experience.

1. Premature twins - used electric (hospital grade) double pump for quite a while on a 3 hour schedule day and night whilst they were in SCBU.

2. As they tried to establish feeding, they were put to the breast as they had their tube feed so they'd associate feeling full with the breast. It was slow progress, and I needed to use nipple shields for a couple of weeks but all good.

3. Eat and drink lots - its not just the liquid you need, its the food (according to my consultant). Lots of stimulation for the senses if you do need to express away from the babies - photos, something they've worn / been next to (to sniff) etc.

4. Rugby hold is great, I could do it for about 5 minutes if they were both starving at the same time, then fed them separately. I was the master of feeding one and rocking a bouncy chair with the other baby in it with my foot!

5. Mine also had a dedicated boob each - DS one side, DD the other. If one fed in the night, I woke the other to feed. Fed on demand for about 5 months and then gradually tried to get them into a routine. Talk to your H now that he's on board with helping in the night (with nappy changes or settling) because it is a bit relentless and I wouldn't have been able to do it myself.

6. I also expressed in the morning for quite a while just to keep on top of supply - so I'd feed twin 1, then twin 2 whilst expressing from twin 1's boob, then express from twin 2's boob for 5 minutes after twin 2 had finished.

7. Don't put yourself under too much pressure. Twins are hard work, even if they're your first babies but with older children already, it will be manic! Good luck!

ScarlettFreestone Mon 13-Feb-17 17:31:27

I exclusively breast fed my twins for nearly 18 months.

I agree a pillow makes a big difference I used an ez to nurse pillow.

I can highly recommend "Mothering Multiples" by Karen Kerkhoff Gromada" it has lots of practical feeding advice and pictures of different holds. You can get it on Amazon and I see she now has a website too.

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