Help & Advice
Breastfeeding Twins Solo
Breastfeeding twins without help or solo can seem like a daunting task, but if you have a plan and are well prepared, it can be done!
Don’t rush yourself, especially if these are your first children and you are still figuring out breastfeeding. Also, when you are establishing breastfeeding with your twins use any of the help you might have available to get off to a good start. Once you have conquered breastfeeding twins with help, it’s time to fly solo.
First you will need to set the scene. There are a few ways to approach breastfeeding twins solo. One way is to place each baby in a bouncy chair at your feet, but a common and easy way to set yourself up is to use two U-shaped pillows and place them on each side of you while sitting in the middle of a sofa. When setting up your nursery, you may want to consider adding a sofa instead of a glider.
Having an ottoman to be able to put your feet up on will add extra comfort. You will need a larger twin-specific nursing pillow that preferably can be secured behind your back. Keeping extra cushions on hand and a stack of receiving blankets nearby will also come in handy. Make sure you include anything else you might want within reach, like a bottle of water.
To approach breastfeeding twins solo watch for early hunger cues like smacking lips, bringing hands to the mouth and sticking out tongue. Getting to them when they are exhibiting these hunger cues is important as if they get over-hungry it can be harder to latch them on. Place the first baby in one of the u-shaped pillows on the sofa and take an extra cushion, placing it at the baby’s feet to secure them. Then place the second baby in the second u-shaped pillow. Both babies may be fussy at this point, that is okay. Note: once your babies are moving more you will need to use a more secure method, such as buckling them in their bouncy chairs at your feet.
You will then want to latch your first baby. Which baby you choose to latch first is personal preference. You may want to choose the baby who was showing hunger cues, or whichever baby is a stronger breastfeeder. It is best to start by using the football hold. You will take that first baby, placing it on the large nursing pillow, with its feet near the sofa and your ribs. Then you can latch your baby. You may want to roll up a receiving blanket and place it behind your baby’s head and shoulder to help keep them in the good breastfeeding position and also to secure them while you reach for your second baby.
You will then pick up your second baby and repeat the latch and position on your other side. It is very likely that while you are reaching, the first baby might pop off your nipple. Just stay calm and know that it is normal for it to take a few minutes to get everyone latched and settled.
While both babies are nursing, you can put your feet up, place a cushion behind your head, and relax and close your eyes. When you think your twins are almost finished, place receiving blankets over your shoulders in preparation for burping your twins. Then take the first baby that is ready to be burped, place them on your shoulder and burp with one hand. Make sure your body is slightly reclined, so that gravity will help you keep your baby in place. Then you can add your second baby to your second shoulder to burp. Pat each baby’s back with each hand while in a reclined and relaxed position. Depending on your milk supply and how hungry your babies are, they may want to nurse on the other side at this point. If they still want to nurse, that does not indicate anything is wrong with your supply. On the contrary, it just means they are doing their job teaching your body how much milk to make for them as what goes out, gets replenished.
Always remember to keep your baby’s adjusted age in mind when attempting breastfeeding them solo. This can affect their neck strength and swallowing. Breastfeeding your twins solo will become easier as they get older and more in control. You will find different positions and techniques that suit you and your babies best. Before you know it, you will master breastfeeding your twins solo even on the go, without any elaborate set up!
By Joanna Venditti – Nesting Story