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How to Feed Newborn Twins
I Grow Twins! What's Your Superpower?
We had our first set of twins on March 11, 2005. At thirty-seven weeks and five days, I had a scheduled c-section and my sons entered the world. Our first son weighed 6 lbs 3 oz and the second weighed 5 lbs 12 oz. That is right. Almost twelve lbs! Because I was fortunate enough to carry them nearly full term, their size and health were amazing. They did not go to NICU, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and left the hospital when I did.
We were a bit overwhelmed when we got home. I remember looking at my husband and asking, “When did they last feed?” In the hospital, there was a dry erase board and we logged child’s name, when they ate and what amount. Now, we were on our own.
We needed to figure out: How to Feed Newborn Twins!
How To Overcome Three Common Feeding Problems In Healthy Infants: Milk Allergies, Infant Constipation and Reflux
The first consideration is health of the children. Regardless of being a multiple or singleton, if the baby was born premature, they may not yet have the sucking reflex. This reflex does not begin until about the thirty-second week of pregnancy and is not fully developed until about thirty-six weeks. Enfamil lists multiple ways to overcome the challenges of premature baby feeding.
In our case, they were able to suck immediately. We were fortunate.
Twins Feeding Chart Printable
A great example of a twin feeding chart including feeding, diaper change, medicine given and notes.
Chart The Feedings
Regardless of method, it is important to chart your feedings. We kept a chart on table that contained the same information as at the hospital: baby name, time, amount eaten, and we added diaper detail (wet/dry). This was a good way to remember when the babies need to feed next and track over all consumption and bowel movements for the day. When you are feeding twins, you can get tired and forget.
Charting keeps the details available when your tired mind is slipping!
The second consideration is bottle or breast feeding.
Bottle Feeding Twins
We exclusively bottle fed our twins. Bottle feeding a twin can be just like a singleton, assuming you have two people. When my husband was home or I had other helpers, there is no difference between bottle feeding one or more babies. The challenge began when my husband went back to work and when the helpers went home. Now I was outnumbered. I had two choices. Either feed them one at a time or learn to feed them simultaneously.
Use Of The Car Seat Or Bouncy Seat
I have seen twins fed in their car seats or bouncy seats. Because they can be strapped in, they maintain their upright position and you do not have to hold the babies. By setting both car seats or bouncy seats in front of you, you can feed both babies. I did try this method a few times. Your arms will grow tired quickly!
The Boppy: A Must Have
Another method is to use the Bopp or a nursing pillow.. I set one Boppy against the side of the couch and had a baby sitting upright. The second baby would sit in front of me on my legs propped up. I fed one baby with one hand and one baby with the other. This became my method of choice until the babies could hold the bottles on their own.
Podee Bottles With My Quad Runabout Stroller!
The Podee Bottle System
When our first set was seventeen months old, our second set of twins arrived. I delivered set two at thirty-eight weeks one day and they were 6 lbs. 4 oz. and 6 lbs. 9 oz. Prior to their birth, I stumbled upon the Podee Bottle System and have recommended to moms ever since. It works like a pacifier and the babies can essentially feed themselves. We started the second set on these bottles at age two weeks. They saved my life! I wished I had them for both sets! You need to check these bottles out!
Which Bottle Is Which
One of my sisters has a set of twins as well. She put a colored piece of yarn on each bottle. This way, when they went back into the refrigerator, they knew whose bottle it was. We used 2 different bottles. One of my sons had trouble with the nipples we used at the hospital. We used a traditional bottle and nipple for one son. Our second son used the Playtex bottle with drop ins.
Pick a method to help you remember which bottle is which.
Breastfeeding Twins Video
Breast Feeding Twins
Breast feeding is the second option. Breast feeding can be overwhelming and breast feeding multiples can be even more challenging. My fellow twin moms that breastfed recommend the EZ-2-Nurse Twins pillow or the NurseMate pillow. Both have large, firm surfaces and allow for simultaneous feeding.
The main difference between breast feeding a singleton vs. twins, is logistics. How do you hold both babies at the same time? There are a few holds that twins mom find most effective.
- Tips & Advice | Breastfeeding Twins
Breastfeedingtwins.org provides a resource for those interested in breast feeding twins.
Breast Feeding Hold For Twins
There are three common nursing holds for twins:
- Double Clutch/Football Hold
- Double Cradle
Other Twins Articles by Twinstimes2
- How to Have Independent Twins
We had four children in seventeen months. We have two sets of twins. In addition to meeting their physical, emotional and spiritual needs, we focused on raising four children. We wanted to raise independent twins.
- 2 Sets of Twins! We Had Twinstimes2!
We had back to back twins, 17 months apart. Find out how we got ready for set 1 and set 2...and survived!
Night Feedings With Twins
Regardless of how you feed your twins, you are going to be exhausted! Our first weeks were an absolute blur. Because I bottle fed, my husband and I both enjoyed the night feedings. We would each take a baby through the night. You were responsible for him the whole time. It was a crap shoot. Just because your baby was good last night and slept well, that was not a guarantee for the next night. I even recall my husband feeding my baby one time and not feeding his at all. He insisted on feeding the kids on the couch downstairs. I fed them in the chair in the upstairs hallway. We would cross paths on the stairs and not even say a word. We were super tired!
Overcoming Challenges of Twins
Challenges of Twins
My husband and I agree that the first year of twins is the most challenging. I can’t even imagine how many bottles were cleaned and diapers we changed. At their first birthday, we gave each other a high five. We did it! That first year milestone was as much an accomplishment for us as it was for the babies!
Once the babies became toddlers, I felt like we began to reap the benefit of twins. I feel like I gave my children the most amazing gift ever: they were born with their best friend.