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Breast-Feeding Multiple Infants

Breast-Feeding Multiple Infants

Topic Overview

Most mothers can produce enough milk to breast-feed two or more babies. If you have twins or triplets, breast-feeding becomes more physically and emotionally challenging. But with support and guidance, you can be successful.

Breast-feeding fosters the bond between you and each baby. Since multiples often are born prematurely, the protective factors ( antibodies ) in breast milk are especially important for them.

Get assistance from a health professional, a breast-feeding specialist (lactation specialist), or another person with expertise in breast-feeding multiple-birth babies. Special techniques often are recommended for multiples. These may include:

  • Feeding the babies one at a time until they learn to latch on to the breast.
  • Feeding two infants at the same time after you are comfortable feeding one at a time. The cradle hold or the football hold often are advised. (You may also choose to feed the infants one at a time.)
  • Pumping breast milk after your milk supply is established so that others can help you feed the babies.
  • Using formula to supplement breast milk feedings.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer William Gilbert, MD - Maternal and Fetal Medicine
Last Revised July 8, 2011

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

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