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Your question:

Is it possible to breastfeed twins?

Expert’s answer:

Before your babies arrive it is advised to attend a breastfeeding preparation class, to learn as much as you can about breastfeeding and also to meet other parents. These classes are participant led and some of the topics that may be included are:

  • How to prepare for breastfeeding
  • Easy ways to position and attach your babies to your breast
  • How to recognise your babies are well positioned and attached
  • How often you should feed your babies in the early weeks
  • How to know your babies are getting enough breastmilk
  • Potential breastfeeding challenges in the early days
  • Expressing your breastmilk both by hand and by pump
  • Recommendations about healthy eating, alcohol and medications
  • Local breastfeeding supports
  • Information about attending a breastfeeding support group in your area before your twins are born.
  • Arrangements to meet with the Breastfeeding Councellor or the local or hospital based Lactation Consultant during your pregnancy
  • Ensuring you are well supported when you arrive home with your twins. You will need someone to cook, clean and help out in general.

Here is a link to help get you started:https://www.breastfeeding.ie/Getting-Started/

Feeding your babies:

When you are breastfeeding your twins, it may take a little time to find a position that you like and feel comfortable with. You can try a combination of positions, however initially you may find it easier to concentrate on one baby at a time, or your midwife/partner may help you when positioning the two babies at the same time.

When you are confident one baby is well positioned and attached to your breast then you can try the two babies together, this will save you time and your babies will love being close with you and each other at the breast. It always helps in the early days to feed in a big bed or big sofa, you in the middle with plenty of pillows all around to support your back and to lift up your babies if needed.

Your breastmilk is produced on demand, the more you feed the more you make. You will have plenty of milk for both babies once you feed on demand, for as long as each baby needs to.  If your babies are small or born a little early you Midwife or Public Health Nurse will assist, and support you to ensure your twins are feeding well and gaining weight.

Here is a nice video on breastfeeding twins:

Here is another link with information on the first few weeks with your babies: https://www.breastfeeding.ie/First-few-weeks/

You might also like to get in touch with your local breastfeeding support group if you have not done so already.

They are a wonderful place to meet other mums of toddlers and to discuss breastfeeding and all aspects of parenting. Breastfeeding Support groups are run by Lactation Consultants, public health nurses, La Leche League Leaders or Cuidiu Breastfeeding Counsellors who provide lots of support and information.

Friends of Breastfeeding provide social support at their Mum2Mum groups. You can also phone La Leche League leaders or Cuidiu Breastfeeding Counsellors if you would like to talk to somebody to discuss your current symptoms.

Here is a link to Breastfeeding Support Groups:

https://www.breastfeeding.ie/Support-search/

The ideal healthcare provider for lactation support when a mother is struggling with breastfeeding issues is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). Your PHN may be a Lactation consultant.

http://www.alcireland.ie/what-is-an-ibclc/

Here is a link to Private Lactation consultants in Ireland (A private IBCLC is a chargeable service, however if you have a private health insurance policy you may be entitled to some refund of the costs). http://www.alcireland.ie/find-a-consultant/

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