Twinning: How to Nurse Twins
The number of multiples being born around the world is increasing every day, thanks to the easily available fertility and conception treatments. It is a joy to hear the doctors say that you are expecting twins or even triplets but the struggle does not really start until after birth.
This is when you will be trying to breastfeed two babies at once and manage the overwhelming amount of breastmilk oozing out of your nipples day and night. The double trouble will keep you awake and on your feet through the first few months after delivery.
Here are some tips that will help you nurse your little team of two while maintaining some sanity:
ESTABLISH A SCHEDULE
The average new-born needs to feed at least once every two or three hours. You can try to nurse them at the same time while watching carefully for the signs of being full. Remember, however, that all babies are different and even identical twins will have different feeding needs. One may feed more frequently than the other, or get full faster. In time, the two will fall into their own schedules so that one may be feeding while the other is asleep.
Holding two babies at the same time can be very tiresome and it will also be difficult to control some movements such as putting the nipple in and out of their mouths. You could get yourself a nursing pillow designed to hold twins.
Switching the breasts is important in making sure that they are stimulated equally and also that the babies do not develop a side preference. In the case of triplets, you can only feed two at a time and have one wait. Remember, however, to switch the schedule for who gets to wait.
INCREASING THE MILK SUPPLY
Naturally, feeding twins regularly will stimulate your breast to produce more than enough milk. This is why mothers nursing multiples have trouble controlling their milk supplies. In some cases, however, the supply may still not be enough for the babies. In this case, you can stimulate the breasts using a milk pump. It is actually very helpful as you can have your partner or someone else to feed your baby the breastmilk as you catch some shut-eye.
ASK FOR HELP
Most mothers, especially new moms, struggle hard with nursing and raising their twins. This burden may be made significantly easier by seeking the help of other family members or even hiring a nanny for the babies. They can take care of the babies as you get some rest.
You can also get support from your doctor, paediatrics and midwives. Such professional often have helpful advice to offer regarding the health and general wellbeing of your babies. If you need more experienced support, you can ask other mothers who have successfully raised multiples.
Conclusively, twins, triplets and other multiples can quickly drive you crazy if you do not have a good idea on how to nurse and raise them. Do not be afraid to ask for help; many professionals and mothers are often willing to give you some for free.