Helping Parents With Multiples

aaaFeeding Multiple Babies

We started a discussion about caring for multiples last week click here to see article.

Now we will discuss specific ways nannies and au pairs can assist parents of multiple babies each day. Some of the helpful tasks nannies and au pairs caring for multiple births provide include helping feed the babies, bathing the babies, shopping for food, and some light household clean-up. In-home caregivers also provide mothers the chance to get a nap or just to get out of the house.

Feeding of multiple babies consumes a large chunk of each day. Collyn, a nanny of five children that cares for two sets of twins in Alphraetta, Georgia declares, “My biggest challenge has been feeding. With sets of twins it is hard to remember which one I propped last so that I could prop the other during the next feeding.”

That is why tracking the feeding schedule on a chart or in a daily log is so important to ensure every baby is being fed enough.

In an article entitled, “Parenting Multiples,” on the Kids Health web site at kidshealth.org it explains, “Multiples have been both breast- and bottle-fed successfully and each approach has passionate advocates.”

The article explains, “If the parents choose to breast-feed, it’s a good idea to seek help from a lactation consultant. It’s possible to nurse two babies simultaneously, but it may take some time to master. A lactation consultant can show [the mother] basic positions to help the mother nurse her babies either two at a time or singly. A nursing pillow designed for twins may also be helpful.”

The article also explains, “It may also be helpful to pump and store breast milk, so that other caregivers can help with the feedings. These pumps help [the mother] to collect milk from both breasts, allowing [caregivers] to dump old milk or collect milk for future feedings.”
“Bottle-feeding may take some of the pressure off exhausted mothers, especially if there are more than two infants to feed,” states the Parenting Multiples article. “Some mothers use a combination of breast- and bottle-feeding, to keep some of the benefits of nursing while still getting help with the feeding.

Most nannies like to develop a feeding schedule. Nanny Emilie, from Canton, Michigan suggests, “[Keeping] the same schedule as far as feeding twins helps out and works well.”

Mary, a nanny from Washington, District of Columbia agrees. Mary points out, “It is better to  have all children on the same schedule. Otherwise you can forget who was fed.”

An anonymous nanny and home manager form Madison, Wisconsin says, “The same schedule just keeps everything flowing and everyone on track.”

Stop by again tomorrow when we will discuss bathing multiples.
Do you have any tips to share with nannies and au pairs about feeding multiples?

Comments

  1. I think it is better to let the children create their own schedule. It is easier for the parents and nanny if they have the children on the same schedule, but that may not be the best for the childrenHighland Park NJ

  2. Buy earplugs.Nancy YoungDarien CT

  3. My only advice to nannies is to understand that mothers and fathers of multiples are exhausted. Be patient with us! I am a mother and my husband and I are currently transitioning a nanny (guess what for three kids it is cheaper than daycare)! She is a God Send. I most appreciate the nanny as a real help with feeding the triplets. I got so much “back talk” from mothers about breast vs bottle feeding and we just have to use bottles at this point. If I expect help at night and during the day bottles are just a neccesity. I still spend most of the day just feeding the babies. If I were ever to go back to work we’ll need bottles too. Just crazy. My recommendation to other parents is 100% nanny is for help with immediate care of babies only 1) feeding 2) bathing dressing 3) laundry and that’s it. I don’t expect any more from our nanny and although our schedule is ridiculous I keep our nanny’s schedule consistent. I cannot have her too tired alongside my husband and I. We need at least one properly functioning adult in the home!I love my nanny!!! Nannies, just be patient with over tired parents of multiples!Lina PhillipsMother of tripletsScarsdale, New York

  4. The idea of a baby choosing when to be fed doesn’t work as well with multiples. Multiples learn to be patient. I believe in a schedule for feeding with twins or triplets. Just take a bed pillow and prop both babies up on it. Then with a bottle in each hand, feed until it is time to burp them. When it is time, take turns burping each twin, one and then the other. Twins will learn patience. They have to wait their turn on many occasions. If two adults are available each can feed one at the same time. Brenda Collins, Boston Nanny

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