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What to Expect With Twin Newborns

Newborn twins snuggled together

Twin newborns can pose a serious challenge to many mothers, particularly new mothers. In fact, it's customary for many hospitals to hand out support group pamphlets to the parents of multiples shortly after the birth of twins, triplets, and more. With the rise of fertility treatments in contemporary society, twin births are also increasing in number. Fortunately, many mothers of twins can find solace from Internet forums where new parents can share their experience of dealing with new twin babies.

What to Expect From Twins

Most mothers find the first three months after the birth of their baby to be an exhausting and frenzied lifestyle change. However, the experience of twin newborns can be even more frenetic for a new mother. There are actually many benefits to having twins, but many of these advantages will not come to light for several years. So, the goal of any mother of twins should be fixated on trying to survive the first three months by whatever means possible.

The Premature Birth Issue

The first challenge a mother of twin newborns will face is the reality that many sets of multiples are born prematurely. At the very beginning of your pregnancy you might have been planning a natural birth or, perhaps, even a relaxing home-birth under the care of an experienced midwife. Then the ultrasound or Doppler reveals twins. Having twins can interrupt any birth plan. It's not to say that twins cannot be safely delivered by a homebirth. In fact, they can. However, multiple pregnancies pose far higher risks to both the mother and babies, so many midwives will encourage your birth to take place in a birthing center or at least close to a hospital.

Also, because multiple pregnancies tend to labor as much as five weeks earlier than singletons' pregnancies, a mother needs to have her hospital bag packed several weeks ahead of time. Twin births are also linked to a higher rate of cesarean, and although many mothers fear the idea of a c-section, it is important to remember that however the birth occurs, the safety of the infants is always a priority.

Difficulties in Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is now heavily promoted by American pediatricians. The advantages of breast milk are scientifically documented and energetically touted by many obstetricians and lactation consultants. So, of course, many new mothers are very excited about the prospect of breastfeeding; but with twin newborns, breastfeeding can involve an intense juggling act.

It is possible to breastfeed twins, though it can often be very stressful. Nursing should be a peaceful bonding experience for both mother and child, but with a second twin wailing in his crib, it is no wonder that many mothers of multiples end up supplementing with formulas or eventually bottle-feeding their twins completely. Breastfeeding can keep mothers up for several hours during the night; however, where twins are concerned, a mother attempting to nurse can end up awake the entire night as each twin may choose a different feeding schedule.

This is why it is important that a mother not suffer tremendous guilt over issues like birthing plans or bottle-feeding. Remember, as a mother of twin newborns, your goal is to survive the chaos since the challenge you face is considerably greater than that of the mother of a healthy singleton. You can learn more about breastfeeding twins at where you can also read the questions and testimonials of other mothers with twin mothers.

Twin Infants and Health

Many twin infants are born prematurely and may have to spend some time in the NICU. Although most twins will suffer no adverse health defects from a slightly premature birth, some will experience developmental delays or physiological repercussions that surpass the typical cases of jaundice or poor sucking mechanisms.

This does not mean that your twin newborn will be physically challenged for life! Most twins overcome these deficiencies quickly enough. Twins Online can tell you more about the premature birth of multiples, but to maximize your twins' gestation time, it is always best to obey your doctor's orders and attempt as calm a pregnancy as possible.

The Importance of Routine

The first twenty-four months with twins will be marked by chaotic activity, which is why many twin mothers will tout the importance of establishing a daily routine. Though it can be harder to establish with breastfeeding infants, most mothers will attempt to organize feeding times, naps, baths and activities into a precise daily schedule. A routine helps to manage the chaos and give mothers a sense of order and control over the entropy.

Sure, your schedule's inflexibility may make it more difficult for you to organize play-dates with other mothers, but with twins, every day is a play-date! Furthermore, as your twins grow older and have adjusted to a sound routine, you'll have a well structured household which is something that almost every mother covets.

What to Expect With Twin Newborns