Thinking about tandem breastfeeding twins? There are so many questions, right? Like what are the logistics? What is the best way to tandem breastfeed twins? I got you. Keep reading to find out how I made it work as a twinmom.
Breastfeeding one baby can be an awkward learning curve, especially when they’re newborns and you’re just establishing the breastfeeding relationship. Even more so when tandem breastfeeding twins. When there’s more than one it’s even more important to be clear on the best way to breastfeeding twins.
(Just an FYI this post might contain some affiliate links to my favorite products.)
How to tandem breastfeed twins
There are a lot of things I’m not great at as a mom (see: potty training), but one thing I rocked was breastfeeding. I was a little nervous about tandem breastfeeding twins, even though I had breastfeed my first child. Would I have enough milk? How do you hold two babies at once? It just felt like a lot.
But after the first few days I fell into a nice rhythm with my little guys and pretty soon we were all three comfortable and pro’s with tandem breastfeeding.
So I’m going to break down all the steps and tools I used to master tandem nursing twins. It gets a bit detailed, and other moms might have different approaches, but based on the breastfeeding twins groups I’m in, this type of setup works well for a lot of breastfeeding moms out there.
What you’ll need for the best way to breastfeed twins
Now that my twins are toddlers and still breastfeeding, I can just whip out a boob and they happily latch on.
But when babies are newborns and don’t have head control, it’s a lot trickier to get them to latch on properly and comfortably for all three of you.
Set yourself up for success by having just a few items around that will make it so much easier for you.
- A Brest Friend Twin Pillow (or Twin Z if you prefer)
- A few extra throw pillows
- A muslin blanket or two
- A drink for yourself and a snack!
- The TV remote
- Your phone
How to get in position by yourself
It isn’t always easy to get two babies into position to breastfeed easily, but I figured out some ways to make it work for myself. It’s hard to exactly describe, but hopefully, it makes sense for you.
Here are my steps:
- Put babies in the pack and play.
- Get my snacks/drink/remote/phone all ready and within reaching distance to where I’ll be sitting.
- Prop a pillow on the couch where my lower back will be and put on next to where I will sit so it’s reachable.
- Strap the Brest Friend to me. I love this pillow because it actually has a waist strap with velcro so you can strap it on and walk around with it on. It won’t support a baby’s weight, but it helps you keep it in place.
- Once the pillow is strapped to me I would scoop up one baby in each arm with football hold. This took some practice, but after a week or so I got it down. Before I was able to do this I would take the babies one at a time and place them on the couch next to wear I would be sitting. They weren’t able to roll yet, but I would put a pillow or something next to them so they couldn’t roll off the couch. This isn’t a safe place to leave a baby, but I was only leaving them there for a few seconds.
- Next, I would sit down and get the babies positioned on the pillow in a football hold. If I had one in each arm it was pretty simple to just set them down on top of the pillow, and if I had them laying on the couch next to me I would pick up one at a time and place them on the pillow, ensuring to keep them positioned in ways they wouldn’t fall off the couch or the pillow.
- Once I had them positioned on the pillow I would put another throw pillow underneath the Brest Friend pillow to bring it higher and close to the breast.
- Then I propped their heads a little with a receiving blanket if necessary.
- The Brest Friend pillow has a little pocket so I liked to stash my phone, the TV remote, and my drink or snack if it fit too.
- After all of that, I’d be ready to go! Whip ’em out and let the feast begin.
Why this is the best way to breastfeed twins (specifically newborns)
Once your babies get a little bigger, you won’t need a whole bunch of steps or special props in order to breastfeed them.
But when they are teeny tiny, they’re cluster feeding, and you know you’ll be stuck there for a while, you want to be as comfortable as possible.
I binge-watched the entire series of Breaking Bad in this position. Propped with two pillows plus the Brest Friend pillow, snacks and drink on hand. I didn’t find any positions that worked as well as this to both keep the babies happy and me happy.
How do you burp them?
I see a lot of moms asking how do you burp babies when you’re tandem breastfeeding twins, and it’s actually pretty easy.
I keep talking about the Brest Friend pillow, but it seriously is so helpful. It is pretty solid and sturdy and the way it’s formed makes the baby roll into you a little instead of off the edge. So between that and a receiving blanket you can prop one baby up, allowing them to continue nursing, while you carefully pull the other one up on your shoulder to burp.
Or, you can always leave them on the pillow and just turn them onto their belly a little to burp.
You’ll find what works for you, but it was really easy for me to either bring them one at a time up to my shoulder to burp or once I got more adept, I could just burp them both at one time. One on each shoulder.
Breastfeeding tips for nursing two babies at once?
The most important tip I have is getting a twin breastfeeding pillow is key. You can find other ways to nurse twins, but having a nice tandem breastfeeding pillow you love will make the experience so much better. As your babies grow you will eventually depend less and less on the pillow, but when they are tiny and a bit floppy, it provides much-needed support.
What are the benefits of tandem breastfeeding twins?
When breastfeeding twins you’ve got double the babies, and double the food. So imagine having to pay for twice as much formula then clean twice as many bottles. As challenging as tandem breastfeeding twins can be, it’s a lot cheaper and simpler than bottle feeding.
The challenges of tandem breastfeeding twins and how to overcome them?
Breastfeeding is a lot of work, and it can be emotionally draining to constantly have our body on call for feedings. There will be tough days when you want to throw in the towel. There are two pieces of advice that are really helpful. First, even if you don’t plan to pump, express at least a feed or two of breastmilk to keep in the freezer in case you have a tough day and just really want someone else to do a feeding. Second, don’t quit on a bad day. There were days I wanted to quit, but I waited until the day passed and reassessed in the morning. Make sure if you do decide to stop breastfeeding your twins it is something you feel good about and isn’t just a decision made out of frustration that will pass.
You’ll find what works for you mama. But for me and a lot of other twin moms, this is the best way for tandem breastfeeding twins. For more breastfeeding twins tips, check out this article all about I learned after breastfeeding twins for two years!
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