Feeding your babies is very much a personal choice and you should do what works best for you, your babies and your family situation. One option is to bottle feed. This could be with either formula milk or expressed breast milk. One major advantage of bottle feeding is that parents, and anyone else, can share in the task. This may also be an important consideration for parents of twins or more who need to be able to spend time with their other children.
Please follow the instructions for cleaning and sterilising bottles carefully – details can be found on the Unicef website.
Feeding provides a great opportunity to spend some one to one time with your babies and gives you time to get to know each other and start to build a lovely relationship. Every baby is different and taking some time with him/her during feeding helps you get to know their individual needs and feeding patterns.
If both (all) of your babies wake together, it is possible for one adult to feed two babies at once using one of the following positions:
- Older babies may be positioned each in an infant seat and you can sit between them both of them (support your back against a wall/sofa/chair), holding a bottle in each hand.
- You can position one baby in an infant seat and hold one baby in your lap, again holding a bottle in each hand. Alternate which baby is on your lap at each feed so each baby has a turn being held close on your lap.
- Feeding pillows can also be used to feed two babies at once as they get a bit bigger, positioning it alongside you so you can maintain eye contact and keep a close eye on both of them. A single feeding pillow can also be used instead of a infant seat in the above example.
Please note: babies should never be propped up with a bottle, left unattended during feeding or fed lying down – all of these positions pose a serious risk of baby choking.
Talk to your midwife or health visitor when they visit or call if you feel you need more support regarding positioning your babies safely and comfortably during feeding. The number to contact them should be in your red book.
Winding / burping
Get to know your baby, some babies need winding at regular times throughout the feed whereas others prefer to wait till the end, do what works best for each individual baby so that feeding is a relaxed and enjoyable experience.
To wind theld them hold them upright and gently rub or gently pat their back to bring up any wind, as per the NHS choices information for burping single babies.
Do this for each baby. Don't try to wind both babies at the same time if you are feeding them by yourself.