There is a steep curve for learning how to feed two or more babies at once but it is a necessary skill for parents with multiples. One of the most important things to keep in mind when feeding twins is safety. While we will discuss simultaneous feeding, they should be fed separately until they can both safely eat together. Separate feeding is especially important for preemies. We will cover breast and bottle feeding twins in today’s blog. Always feed them at the same time
When you have twins, conserving your time is a crucial skill because you have twice as much to do than with a singleton. A newborn will eat 8-12 times for approximately 30 minutes each feed. So if you are feeding twins separately, you will spend 8-12 hours each day just on feeding. By feeding twins together, you free up extra time for one of the many other necessary daily activities. If you need to, don’t feel bad about waking one baby so that you can feed them together. Keeping them on the same schedule can save you and your SF Newborn Care doula or NCS from frustration.
Positions to feed
There are a lot of options for feeding twins regardless of whether they are breastfed or bottlefed. Pick the position that is most comfortable for you and doesn’t cause issues for your babies. The only real rule here is to remember that their heads should always be above their bellies. Human digestive systems rely on gravity to move food from the mouth to the stomach. Babies, however, do not have strong esophageal sphincters. This means if their stomach is above their head, their food may not stay in their belly. If you can, hold one and utilize a bouncer, boppy, or pillow to help you feed them both at the same time. My Brest Friend makes a large nursing pillow for twins. It is designed to allow you to get one baby latched well and feeding then latch the second baby.
If your babies drink at the same pace, start them 3-5 minutes apart. That way you can burp one first while the other baby continues to eat. If you are using a bouncer or boppy when feeding twins, make sure you switch which baby is being held at each feed. If one twin is sleeping significantly longer at night, consider allowing them to sleep until they wake up. If you can’t feed them at the same time or are uncomfortable doing so, feed them one after the other. You have to do what works best for you. Remember to breathe. You’ll get the hang of it and before you know it, you’ll be a pro. If you have triplets, follow the tips above and add in extra bouncer. Alternatively, you can feed two babies and then feed the third by alone. Make sure you alternate which baby is fed by themselves.