Feeding twins - Canpol's Mums advise - Canpol

Advice from Canpol's experienced mothers.

Feeding twins

Twins mean doubled duties but also doubled joy. Surely you have a lot of concerns about bringing up or feeding. Do not get stressed. You are not the only one. The world is full of twins. Since other mums succeeded, you can for sure handle it too.

How to start?

In the beginning try to feed the babies individually. Even though they are twins, they may have a completely different suckling technique. One may like to drink quickly, the other can be slower. Try to feed them both simultaneously when you get enough practice with feeding individually. Remember that when you feed twins, you usually need some help of another adult. It is difficult to attach the second child when the first is e.g. suckling vigorously.
Of course you do not have to feed both babies at the same time, but there is no denying that this way you will save a lot of valuable time and avoid a situation in which a hungry baby cries waiting for his turn.

Useful accessories

A special twin nursing pillow in the shape of a banana is very useful. You can buy it or sew it yourself. A pillow behind your back and a small stool for your feet, will help you in finding a correct feeding position.

What position is the best?

There are several positions for feeding twins. Of course, your choice will depend on several factors: the baby's weight and age, breast size, a place where you breastfeed as well as the moods and appetite of your little ones.

Practical tips

Babies may have different suction power and appetite, so you should feed them in turns from both breasts, because it stimulates milk production and promotes even emptying.
If you do not have enough milk and you have to supplement the babies with infant formula, try to latch on each baby in turn during every feeding session.
If for some reason you can not breastfeed your babies, try to express milk with a breast pump and serve it to the little ones using a bottle.

Twin feeding positions

Breastfeeding twins is quite a big effort. However, it is possible when using proper feeding techniques. Below you will find a few positions for feeding both babies at the same time. Try all of them and choose the one that is the most convenient for all three of you.

Double clutch hold

Sit comfortably on a sofa. Support yourself with pillows on both sides (you can use a special banana-shape twin nursing pillow).
Place the first baby so that his feet are directed towards your back, and his tummy touches your side. Hold his head and neck with one hand.
Place the other baby in the same position but on you other side.
This a good position for mums after the c-section.

Classical position - cross cradle hold

Sit comfortably on a sofa or in large armchair with straight back. Put a pillow or a rolled blanket behind your back and rest your feet on a chair or a pouffe.
Place the first baby on a pillow and lean his head on your forearm. Position the other little one in exactly the same way but on your other forearm. In this position the little tummies touch the mum's belly.

Cradle hold and clutch hold

In this position you place one child in a typical way on a pillow leaning his head against your forearm. Use the clutch hold to position the second baby and lean his head slightly on the other baby's body.
This position is recommended when the babies are a few months old.

 

Remember! Do not be discouraged by failures and persistently latch the babies on to your breasts. You can always seek assistance of a lactation consultant, a midwife or a pediatrician, who will certainly support you and dispel all your doubts about breastfeeding.
Do not hesitate to ask your nearest and dearest for help as well. In the first weeks taking care of two babies will be extremely difficult, and each additional pair of hands will be highly appreciated.

Ilona

Mum of 11 year old twins Artur and Szymon and 7 year old Bartek, 11 years of professional experience

Marta Piątkowska

Midwife
- consulting