This is a concern that probably weighs heavily on your mind once you discover that you are expecting multiple babies. Breastfeeding multiples is no easy task, and yes, it can even be frustrating at times, but if you are determined to breastfeed your babies, it is entirely possible to make it work. With enough research and preparation, the experience can be just as enjoyable and fulfilling as feeding one baby.
Once you find out that you are expecting twins or triplets, you need to start gathering as much information as you can on breastfeeding multiples. There are some practical implications and nutritional aspects that you need to consider, but nothing worth breaking your head about. Talk to your doctor or midwife to learn all you can about breastfeeding, and look for community forums where you can get support from other mummies in your position.
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Before your babies are born, you need to prepare yourself mentally for what lies ahead. You will need lots of rest and good stock of nutritional foods and snacks. You will need all the energy you can get while you are breastfeeding multiple babies. Also invest in a breast pump, especially if you are expecting triplets. While it stimulates breast milk production, it also allows you stockpile enough milk when it is necessary to bottle feed.
Should you breastfeed both babies at the same time?
When you start out, you might want to consider feeding one baby at a time for the first few days. This will allow you to focus on one baby at a time and discover his drinking pattern. This will boost your confidence, and you will soon feel comfortable enough to feed both babies together.
Some mums still choose to feed one baby at a time, but breastfeeding multiples in one sitting not only saves a lot of time but also increases the hormones that tells your body to produce more milk through supply and demand. Additionally, your babies might respond better when brother or sister is feeding right next to them. If one baby has a stronger “pull,” the other baby will benefit from the let-down milk as well, and with less effort.
How do your breastfeed multiple babies at the same time?
First of all, you need to get your babies on the same feeding schedule. If the one wakes up for a feed, wake other baby as well. Find a large and comfortable area where you can feed in peace, and support and back on pillows. Additionally you will need comfy pillows to support your babies.
There are many techniques for breastfeeding multiples, but we will only take a look at the popular football hold, which is ideal when you are by yourself:
- Place a baby on either side of you on the pillow, with their feet pointing towards your back.
- First put one baby to your breast, and adjust the pillow to hold him comfortably in this position.
- Do the same with the second baby. Put one arm around each baby and hold them in place.
In the case of triplets, be sure to keep a record of the feeding times and schedules, just to be sure that you don’t mix it up.
Remember to relax when you are breastfeeding multiples and take your time. It might take a couple of tries of trial and error, but experiment with the logistics and different techniques to find out what works for you. And don’t put too much pressure on yourself. There is technically no “right way”, only the way that works best for you and your babies.
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