Congrats on having not 1 but 2 or more children at once. You are a lucky mom and you are going to do great with breastfeeding your twins or multiples. With the right support, you can do anything as a mother just as you did while in labor!
The first thing you need to understand whether you have one child or multipes is supply and demand. understanding the basics for your breastfeeding journey will take you a long way and getting the right position and latch.
Added challenges when breastfeeding multiples include time (or lack of!), sustaining your energy levels and finding the best feeding pattern for both the babies and yourself, just know that it is possible and I've mentored women virtually on how to manage twins and or multiples. I always advised mothers to seek out twin groups via social media who are in FACT breastfeeding and or pumping for their children. There is nothing in this world like support whether virtual or one on one.
Just know that this journey you are on is not for you to go through alone! Have your family and friends help around the home while you take care of the sole responsibility of feeding your babies, I assure you this would help with coping and learning how to for your new mother life. Forget cooking, cleaning or any other household duty and allow others to help assist you while you balance out your journey of motherhood.
KNOW that you will produce sufficent amount of breasts milk for your babies! The key is staying positive and follow these few steps as a new mother with twins or multiples.
First be sure you have your birth and breastfeeding or pumping plan in place before you go into labor, so that everyone can be on the same page and help support you once your babies are born.
You will need to first start with skin to skin! And allow babies to feed within 1 hour of life to start your supply off right and always remember you have had breastmilk since your second trimester!
Never second guess if you are going to make enough milk!
The more your babies feed, the more milk you make. Your breasts should make enough colostrum – the nutrient-rich first milk – to feed your newborns for the first two to four days. After that supply and demand starts to come into play, so be sure you are feeding or pumping every two hours or WHENEVER your babies want to feed. Follow a baby-led approach. Breastfeed whenever either baby shows early signs of being hungry which are called feeding cues– such as stirring from sleep, poking their tongue out, turning their head, making cooing noises, or sucking their lips or hands – to help build a sufficient supply.
What I can do to make breastfeeding twins easier?
It will be trial and error for you and your babies – remember they’re also learning. One baby may find feeding easier, need more frequent feeds, or gain weight more quickly, so treat them as individuals.
Take expert advice on how to tackle any concerns you may have while you are at the hospital and reach out to a Lactation Consultant as much as you need especially within the first 4-6 weeks of your journey! During these weeks just know that it may be hard at first, but it will get easier, it will be time consuming, you may feel like giving up, but I assure you that you are enough and that the breasts milk you provide for your babies are priceless. If you’re doubting your ability to breastfeed exclusively, or your babies aren’t thriving on your breast milk alone, discuss your feeding options with a healthcare professional, lactation consultant or breastfeeding specialist,
Grab yourself an amazing twin boppy pillow that is guaranteed to save your wrists, arms, back and shoulders to prevent yourself from straining!
What if My babies are born premature, can I still breastsfeed?
That is a decision that is up to the doctor, but you can immediately pump your breasts milk for your babies if you need to. Once babies are able to come home you can begin to latch baby and begin your breastfeeding journey in the hospital or at home. You can do it!
Should I feed my twins together or separately?
You might feed individually while you sort out the basics, then move to time-saving tandem breastfeeding (nursing both babies together).
Be sure you are learning positions where you can feed both babies at a time such as the laid-back position (with both babies lying on your tummy).he double rugby ball (with a baby under each arm), the parallel hold (with your babies lying across your body in the same direction), Ask a lactation consultant or breastfeeding specialist to show you how to do these.
I’m struggling with breastfeeding multiples: What should I do?
If you are struggling, never be afraid to ask for help or for someone to look after your babies while you give yourself some self care, maybe talk to your doctor to see what options you have just in case you are experiencing some Postpartum Disorder or baby blues, no matter what stage you’re at in your breastfeeding journey. Don't be hard on yourself and you will have days where you feel like giving up, but DON"T give yourself time and it is not because you have multiples, most women experience some kind of depression or anxiety about their new life as a new mother.