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breastfeeding twins

Posted by on Jul. 27, 2014 at 4:16 AM
  • 8 Replies

I had always planned on breastfeeding, pumping for dad for when i went back to work but it was set in stone in my mind (and still is). today we went to our 2d ultrasound at 23 weeks (big one at the docs is the 6th ... i kept having to reschedule due to his work schedule ... then gave up and made a saturday appt somewhere he could attend ) and found out we were expecting twin boys ... who have seprate sacs but share a placenta (i keep telling myself not to google until after i meet with my regular doctor). anyway, i was trying to get some ahead of the game, been there, done that advice (and maybe an "it's really not that hard" ) because as of now we are planning on continueing with breastfeeding. hopefully it all works out :-) thanks in advance, currently my brain is going 100 mph. 

by on Jul. 27, 2014 at 4:16 AM
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MusherMaggie
by Ruby Member on Jul. 27, 2014 at 5:07 AM
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There are several moms on the forum who have nursed twins, abd I believe one who has nursed triplets! As we suggest to any mom: educate yourself and anyone who will be helping care for you and your babies. Read posts here and on Kellymom.com. Three books: "So That's What They're For" by Janet Tamaro, "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" from La Leche League", & "Mothering Multiples" also available from La Leche League. If your twins spend time in the NICU, insist that they receive nothing but breastmilk. Look up Kajira on this forum; her situation is extreme, but she has forged a path for the rest of us in dealing with micropreemies, medical staff, etc.
MamaCeleste0722
by Celeste on Jul. 27, 2014 at 8:54 AM
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Pretty much what MusherMaggie said. I nursed twins, and we did have some difficulties. We were able to get through it, and I nursed them longer than I did my singleton
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kajira
by Silver Member on Jul. 27, 2014 at 10:39 AM
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the biggest hurdle with twins is they generally are born earlier then singletons, and if you deal with the nicu, the nicu will do just about everything to undermine your ability to breastfeed, not one, but TWO babies.

I'm dealing with that right now, I had a set of twins early (one didn't make it though, but my situation was different, I gave birth at 24 weeks.) and the biggest hurdle is they won't let us go home unless we bottle feed, and i'm fighting them on that right now, if I didn't have other kids, it would be a lot easier to sit in the hospital for 2 weeks straight to prove that he can gain weight on just breastmilk and nursing with no bottles.

If you plan on using bottles anyways, it may not even be an issue or concern, but be warned that some babies don't go back and forth between bottles and breast well, and if they decide they like the bottle, it can be hard to get them to breastfeed.

Would you be willing to exclusively pump if one of htem wouldn't nurse too? Because you might be able to get one ot nurse and not the other, their personalities and stuff have a lot to do with it, although if you make it to 37+ weeks... you may bypass hte nicu altogether and have no issues and none of this would even be a concern.... but on average, twins are born earlier.

kajira
by Silver Member on Jul. 27, 2014 at 10:43 AM
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I'm dealing with the nicu staff pushing bottles right now for a couple weeks before they'd allow him to go home, they are now saying speech therapy can't let him go home with out watching him eat at the bottle to see how he sucks/swallows... I'm still fighting them on it, but i've been talking to a nurse who had a preemie who breast and bottle fed with out supplementing and she has some tricks up her sleeve to keep a preemie on the breast once they go home - if I can get her to be my nurse, and get us breastfeeding successfully in the hospital, I might consent to a couple of bottles if it got him out of there faster and I knew he'd go back to the breast as soon as we got home.

Right now though, education would be key, because if she didn't help me, i'm not sure if he got used to bottles, I could do it on my own with out help and there's no one locally who's a breastfeeding advocate, or anyone who even knows about issues with breastfeeding... so i'm worried about consenting to things in the hospital that would make it harder once we got home, but they also won't let him go home.

Once he's 100% healthy and were just arguing about feeding, I might be able to sign him out AMA - but I'm not sure that's a good situation. When the time comes, I may need to speak to a lawyer and patient advocate. If their only concern is weight gain, I might be able to get my pediatrician to be willing to say she'd take responsbiltiy for watching over him too. There may be a way around it, but I need to find a legal loophole that's on my side, and they make it really hard when everything they do is 100% based on bottles.

Quoting MusherMaggie: There are several moms on the forum who have nursed twins, abd I believe one who has nursed triplets! As we suggest to any mom: educate yourself and anyone who will be helping care for you and your babies. Read posts here and on Kellymom.com. Three books: "So That's What They're For" by Janet Tamaro, "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" from La Leche League", & "Mothering Multiples" also available from La Leche League. If your twins spend time in the NICU, insist that they receive nothing but breastmilk. Look up Kajira on this forum; her situation is extreme, but she has forged a path for the rest of us in dealing with micropreemies, medical staff, etc.


MamaCeleste0722
by Celeste on Jul. 27, 2014 at 11:08 AM
Kajira is right on about the hospital. My boys were 6 weeks early and the dr pushed formula and bottles. I relented and that was the cause of our problems. Looking back now, I wish I would have been stronger about breastfeeding
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Mom_to_Lincoln
by Bronze Member on Jul. 27, 2014 at 11:16 AM

It might be a bit harder at first but even bottle feeding twins will be harder then bottle feeding one. Youwill just have to find a good rhythmand schedule that works best for you. I know many people who breastfed twins with out any supplementing at all so I know it can be done, just remember breastmilk is all about supply and demand if you need more your body will make more and it knows you need more by how often baby(s) nurse along with how often you pump. But nursing is always better then pumping because a baby is a lot more efficient at getting milk out then any pump out there and letting baby nurse on demand is the fastest way to increase your supply. Good luck and I hope your able to find a twin mama with some great tips and advice.

kajira
by Silver Member on Jul. 27, 2014 at 11:22 AM
1 mom liked this

the only advantage I've had is my baby likes to suck, for a micropreemie, he sucked on his tubes, his paci, his fingers, he's even shoving his swaddled blanket/hands in his mouth and chewing on his blanket. He'll latch onto my boob in his sleep. He's got a good latch.

I got lucky. And I mean VERY lucky that as a micro preemie, he'd latch correctly, didn't have any oral aversions, and had his suck swallow and breath reflex by 37 weeks to even test his latch.

Right now, despite everything he's been through, he's not showing any red flags developmentally, the only thing they are worried about is a weaker suck, and I have ways to work on that too. (hand expression for example, pumping the other side when he's nursing to assist him in getting milk.) topping him off with a SNS system and pumped milk taped to my breast.

There's all sorts of ways you can work around a weak suck if your dedicated.

Bottles will always be easier. the insurance companies need to make sure the baby has a way to eat orally as a back up plan to ensure baby won't starve if they are released. It's a legal/insurance thing. I'd be fine letting him have a few bottles once we got breastfeeding working if it let them feel safe letting him out and they'd get him nursing FIRST.

You do the hard thing first, before you offer the easy thing or often babies won't work at it.

Quoting MamaCeleste0722: Kajira is right on about the hospital. My boys were 6 weeks early and the dr pushed formula and bottles. I relented and that was the cause of our problems. Looking back now, I wish I would have been stronger about breastfeeding


MamaCeleste0722
by Celeste on Jul. 27, 2014 at 1:26 PM
The boys went through ECI and one of the things they worked on was his weak suck. It definitely helped him. Even with all the issues we had, they nursed to 3 1/2 and 4 1/2 lol

I am so happy things are going well for you. I have been following your story!

Quoting kajira:

the only advantage I've had is my baby likes to suck, for a micropreemie, he sucked on his tubes, his paci, his fingers, he's even shoving his swaddled blanket/hands in his mouth and chewing on his blanket. He'll latch onto my boob in his sleep. He's got a good latch.

I got lucky. And I mean VERY lucky that as a micro preemie, he'd latch correctly, didn't have any oral aversions, and had his suck swallow and breath reflex by 37 weeks to even test his latch.

Right now, despite everything he's been through, he's not showing any red flags developmentally, the only thing they are worried about is a weaker suck, and I have ways to work on that too. (hand expression for example, pumping the other side when he's nursing to assist him in getting milk.) topping him off with a SNS system and pumped milk taped to my breast.

There's all sorts of ways you can work around a weak suck if your dedicated.

Bottles will always be easier. the insurance companies need to make sure the baby has a way to eat orally as a back up plan to ensure baby won't starve if they are released. It's a legal/insurance thing. I'd be fine letting him have a few bottles once we got breastfeeding working if it let them feel safe letting him out and they'd get him nursing FIRST.

You do the hard thing first, before you offer the easy thing or often babies won't work at it.

Quoting MamaCeleste0722: Kajira is right on about the hospital. My boys were 6 weeks early and the dr pushed formula and bottles. I relented and that was the cause of our problems. Looking back now, I wish I would have been stronger about breastfeeding

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