The only thing cuter than one baby is two babies, am I right? But with all that cuteness comes a lot of hard work. Twice the diapers, twice the milk production, twice the clothes and baby gear, and twice the feedings. How can one mother possibly manage feeding two babies all day?
The My Brest Friend Nursing Pillow for twins is arguably the biggest life saver for new twin moms who are breastfeeding–and even for those who aren’t! Here are the best benefits of using this nursing pillow.
The My Brest Friend nursing pillow for twins is very similar to the original My Brest Friend nursing pillow (you can read my review for that pillow here!) The big difference is that it is much wider of a pillow so it can support two babies at a time.
It does come with all the great features that the original My Brest Friend pillow comes with, which I’ll talk about below.
A pocket for anyone is a useful feature. A pocket for a mother is a God send.
I go into great length about the pocket that is on the My Brest Friend pillow in my review of the My Brest Friend pillow and in the comparison between the My Brest Friend pillow and the Boppy. But if you haven’t read those, the pocket comes with a whole plethora of uses, and it is so special because it is literally the only nursing pillow that I have seen that has one on its slip cover.
Here are my favorite uses for a pocket:
I’m pretty sure this is the top of my list every time I talk about the pocket on the My Brest Friend Pillow. When you are nursing, you’re just a bit hungry. All. The. Time.
Your baby will eat every 2 to 3 hours in the very beginning, and that might seem really frequent to you. You might wonder how someone could get hungry that often. And then you’ll become a nursing mother and you will understand. You will probably get on the same eating schedule as your baby because those babies suck your calories like no one’s business!
So stock up on the snacks. Make sure you have a little something, something in that pocket for mama bear before you start the feed.
One other thing you might need is lactation gear. This could be anything from a nipple shield to extra nursing pads. Whatever you find helpful for when you are feeding your baby should go in that pocket.
One of my favorite nursing accessories is this product that I found during my last pregnancy are these Milkies Milk Savers. When you are nursing, often you will start to let down in your other breast, which is no big deal if you are a twin mom. But what if your other twin is sleeping and doesn’t want to wake to feed? Then you are wasting your other baby’s precious milk by letting it just drip out.
These Milkies are amazing. They collect all the dripping milk and you’ll be able to dump it into a bottle or a storage bag to save for later. For some moms, lactating comes easy, but for others, spilt milk really is a cause for tears.
Another great use for the pocket is for a small pouch of wipes or an extra diaper. Babies like to poop when they eat, so it is common to have to do some ninja diaper changes when your babies are drifting off to sleep. If you are really good at being sneaky, you might be able to change one twin while still feeding the other. That’s how big and supportive the surface of the My Brest Friend pillow is.
Another feature that I absolutely love is the silent buckle. I have gone on about this buckle in my posts before as well, but it is a really great feature. Some buckles are so noisy. My babies were very sensitive to noise. I didn’t even like having snaps on their onesies.
The buckle is basically soundless so you can undo yourself without waking your babies. This feature is amazing and so thoughtful for all the moms out there who just cannot have one more obstacle in life.
Extra Wide Surface
The extra-wide surface of the My Brest Friend nursing pillow is absolutely essential to successfully feed twins. If you want to tandem feed, which most twin moms do if they want to spend any time off of the couch, then you will need a very supportive pillow.
There are a couple other twin nursing pillows out there that I will discuss down below in this post. One of the things that sets My Brest Friend apart is the wide surface that it offers. The other pillows may be comfortable, but the babies, when they are young tend to roll around on the pillow and slide down into the crevices.
My Brest Friend pillow has a wide, flat surface that buckles snugly to mama’s waist. There is no way that the babies will fall into the crevice between pillow and mom.
Another absolutely essential feature that the My Brest Friend pillow for twins has is the raised edges. For me, this is just a matter of safety. Feeding one baby is hard enough to do with two hands. You have to maintain the right position to keep the latch going and help your baby if they are having a hard time with the latch. Just imagine if you had two babies that you had to do this with. If you took your hands off one baby to help the other with his or her latch, you have to know that your baby will not fall off the surface of the pillow.
The raised edges keep your baby firmly in place so you can briefly take your hands off him or her to grab something or help babies with latching.
Other pillows on the market are not firm and their edges are not raised. Babies can easily roll off if not constantly supported.
The raised edges are not only a safety must, but they are also convenient for getting a good latch for your baby. When your babies are newborns, especially twins, since they are often born early, they may need a head support to keep their heads in the right position for a good latch.
Many moms might use a rolled washcloth to use as a head support. The raised edges offer a bit of support that may be enough for most mother’s to get their twins in the right position.
The My Brest Friend fabric choices can be a little confusing when you are figuring out which one to buy. So here is the low down.
The original My Brest Friend pillow comes with a standard cotton slipcover.
The Deluxe My Brest Friend pillow comes with a minky type fabric slipcover.
The Organic My Brest Friend pillow is the same exact pillow but it has an organic cotton and bamboo blend for the slipcover.
The Twin Plus My Brest Friend pillow has a few different fabric options, which may change. Currently, the Evening Grey fabric choice is the only minky textured fabric that is available, but there is no price difference between that and the other standard cotton options. There does not seem to be an organic option for the twin pillow.
The Twins plus and the original pillow both have a waterproof slipcover you can buy separately. There are options to buy the vinyl professional fabric pillow for the single or the twin pillow. That fabric is very easy to clean, but not very comfortable for your baby. If you are just using the pillow for yourself, you may want to buy a pillow with a softer slipcover.
Again, the My Brest Friend pillow has the same (and more!) back support that it offers for the original pillow. The Twin Plus model of the My Brest Friend pillow has the wrap around buckle feature, but it comes with a back support and a removable extra support piece. You can use this or not, but it offers just a tad bit more support since twin moms have to work extra hard to get a good latch with their multiple babies.
How To Get The Perfect Latch
Getting a latch may sound like an easy thing to do, but every baby is different and every woman’s nipples are different as well. Each variable comes with it’s own unique set of challenges. Though no woman’s body is the same, there are some tips that work more often than not to have a successful feeding. Here are some tips especially for feeding twins.
Using A Standard My Brest Friend
Many soon to be twin moms wonder if they can just use a standard My Brest Friend nursing pillow or any other standard singleton pillow. After all, if they plan on having more children, the odds are pretty unlikely that they will have twins again. It seems a waste to buy specifically twin gear just for one set of twins.
You definitely can use a standard singleton pillow for breastfeeding twins. You can nurse one baby at a time, if that’s what you want to do. However, it is so much easier to tandem feed that you might change your mind within a few weeks of post partum.
Read on to find out more about tandem feeding.
Tandem Feeding With Twin Pillow
Tandem feeding is when you feed your twins at the exact same time rather than feeding one after another. It looks a little something like this:
It’s not always as easy as it looks, however. There are some challenges to breastfeeding two babies at once, though not enough challenges to make feeding them one at a time a great option.
According to What To Expect, “For the first few weeks, infants need to breastfeed eight to 12 times per day. That breaks down to about once every two to three hours, day and night. Each session should last about 20 to 30 minutes.” So if you are feeding twins separately, that works out to be anywhere from 5 to 12 hours a day that you could just be nursing. That doesn’t leave a whole lot of time for anything else, let alone sleep.
Set a Schedule
The best thing you can do when you are nursing twins is to set a schedule of regular nursing. This doesn’t mean that you will only feed your babies every three hours on the dot. All babies have different needs and even identical twins will not necessarily need to eat on the same schedule. However, to save your sanity, try to get them on the same schedule as best you can.
The easiest and most effective way to do this is to always feed both of your twins when your hungriest twin is hungry. One of your twins may not want to suck and might prefer to sleep, but at least attempt waking and offering the breast. This will encourage them to learn to eat together.
Get Set Up
Another important thing to do, especially when you are nursing twins, is to set up ahead of time. If your partner is home, then have them hand you the babies, one at a time. Make sure you get a good latch with the first one before even trying to attach the second.
If you are home alone, you may want to have your babies nearby on a pillow, as shown in the video above, or in some sort of nursery gear like a bouncer. (You can find my review of my favorite one here!)
You may also want to have some of the things I outlined in the pocket section of this post either in the pocket of your My Brest Friend Twin pillow or in a basket nearby.
One breast will often produce more milk than the other, so it is important to rotate your babies through your breasts. It can be hard to keep track of these things, so many moms have come up with a certain system. There are nursing rings and bracelets that you can switch from one hand to the other to signal which breast should be for which baby.
What If You Can’t Tandem Nurse?
If you can’t figure out tandem nursing right away, don’t beat yourself up. It is a really difficult thing to learn. Once you have it figured out, it is meant to make your life easier, but if it doesn’t work for you, then that is fine. It is not wrong to do it any other way–it is just more convenient to do it this way and takes up less time.
Get Professional Help
If you have difficulty figuring it out, then reach out to the hospital lactation consultant. Even after you are discharged from the hospital, you can still take advantage of this service. There are also many twins support groups that you can find online through social media. Your lactation consultant can also point you in the right direction for a local multiples support group.
Nursing Pillow Aid
The Twin My Brest Friend Pillow, can still be a great asset to you even if you don’t plan to tandem nurse. Many times mothers will want to take the opportunity, at least early on, to have some skin to skin connection with their other twin while the first twin is feeding, even if you have difficulty latching both at the same time. You can also bottle feed one while nursing the other.
Also, as mentioned earlier, when you let down in one breast, it will cause the other breast to let down as well. If this is the case for you, and your other twin is not hungry, it may be a great opportunity to pump. Then when your other baby is ready to eat, you can pass him or her along to grandma or your partner. Even if you are breastfeeding, you don’t have to do it all alone.
Through my research I was only able to find two really great pillows on the market that represented the competition for twin feeding. There are several companies that have breastfeeding pillows on the market for singletons, but not many made especially for twins.
This is because the market is much smaller for multiples. According to the Tech Interactive: Stanford at the Tech Understanding Genetics, the odds of having twins in natural conception is 1 in 250 births. So though the market is much less than single baby births, there still is a big need to have a twin nursing pillow–especially because feeding twins is so much more challenging than feeding one baby.
Here are the two other twin nursing pillows on the market I’d like to highlight.
The Twin Z is probably the most popular breast feeding pillow after the My Brest Friend Twin Plus pillow. This pillow is more similar to the Boppy than to the My Brest Friend. It is plushy like the Boppy and has a similar shape. Here are the things I like about it.
The My Brest Friend pillow has reigned as the pillow that has back support and that sets it apart from other pillows. However, the back support is even higher and more substantial for the Twin Z pillow. This pillow has an almost W shape with the middle part made to fold up and support your back. It is more plushy and goes up higher on your back than the My Brest Friend pillow.
However, this might not be necessarily better than the My Brest Friend. The My Brest Friend pillow is meant to help correct your posture as a nursing mom. It will provide lumbar support for the lower back and it will encourage you to sit up straighter.
The Twin Z, may be comfortable, but it could cause you to slump.
Again, the Twin Z is similar to the Boppy because the pillows can also be used for your babies as positioners. Like the Boppy, you can have your babies lounge in the curve while they are newborns. They can then use it for tummy time as they learn to hold their head up–with supervision. Finally, they can use it to help them use their trunk muscles and learn to sit up.
This really is a great feature, and one that the My Brest Friend Pillow really can’t compete with.
Now, you know how I love the buckle on the My Brest Friend Pillow. It’s just really great that it is silent. But as far as convenience goes, having the buckle in the front is a really great design. Instead of having to support your babies as you rotate your trunk to unbuckle, you can just reach around and unbuckle in the front with ease.
It is also adjustable, so that it a great feature as well.
Even though this pillow does have some really great features, I still like the features that the My Brest Friend offers. The Twin Z pillow still does not have the firm surface that is so helpful when babies are very young. Newborns, especially twins who are typically born earlier, need to have the most support possible because they cannot adjust very well by themselves.
One of the most common complaints that users of the Boppy and most likely the Twin Z have as well is that their babies fall into the area between the pillow and mom because it is simply not supportive enough.
The Twin Z does have a buckle and it does attach, but not tight enough that it will stay at the right position on your waist. It is a great support and help, but it might not stay at the perfect position for you. You might need to adjust more pillows underneath it or get a nursing stool to help.
Another pillow on the market that can be used for twins is the Luna Lullaby. This one is actually not necessarily made for twins, but can be used with them. Many twin moms have said that they found it helpful. It does have some nice features, but it really pales in comparison with the other pillows that are made specifically for twins.
This pillow is shaped in an L, so you can use it in several different ways. It fits comfortably around your waist, though it will not buckle. You can use this pillow when you are pregnant between your legs or under your belly to support yourself. It can be difficult to find a comfortable position that is also good for your back when you are pregnant so a pillow support can be a lifesaver.
This pillow can also be used as a prop for when your baby is young, though it doesn’t have the same amount of support that the Boppy or Twin Z do.
Many twin moms say they enjoy using this pillow at least at night time or on the go because it isn’t as bulky as other twin pillows. The L shape allows them to put one baby on each side and feed in tandem, but it really doesn’t offer the same support that the other two pillows offer.
Of course, since this pillow is not specifically made for twins, it will have a few negatives. The biggest problem would be that it doesn’t have the support that the mother will need to hold her babies and help them with their latch. The twins may have trouble keeping a latch, but it is difficult to take your hands off of one baby if you are unsure if he or she will fall off the pillow.
This pillow also does not have the kind of back support that the other two pillows provide. Protecting your back, especially right after giving birth when your relaxin levels are still high, is very important. As your body is returning to normal, good posture will help you have less back problems in the future.
Overall, there really aren’t many choices on the market for a nursing pillow made specifically for twins. The ones on the market are vastly different, so it should be relatively easy to make a decision of which one you would rather have. It can be hard to make the decision before your babies have arrived and without trying them out, but it is so helpful to have a nursing pillow to help you in the hospital after you deliver. Breastfeeding is hard enough with one baby, but when you have more than one, you need all the help you can get.
If you have trouble deciding what pillow seems to suit you best, contact your hospital’s lactation consultant and they can get you in contact with other twin support groups. From there, you can get a vast array of helpful twin tidbits.