I think there are only few mothers known about tandem breastfeeding now days. Right now, my wife is doing tandem breastfeeding with our newly born baby and to our 2 years and 7 months old toddler.
Yes, until now our almost 3 years old son still in breastfeeding because we believed that the best is the milk of the mother. Imagine lactation breastfeeding of 2 babies at the same and sometimes the father will joined to the party.. :-p .. HAHHA..just kidding.
But seriously I really admire my wife of doing this for our babies as well as all the mothers who are doing this Tandem breastfeeding.
Table of Contents
- What is Tandem Breastfeeding?
- 1. Decide Who to Feed First
- 2. Avoid the Rivalry
- 3. Only Says Positive Language to the Older One
- 4. Set Limits That Work On You
- 5. Watch Your Nutrition
- 6. Work on That Latch
- 7. Respect Your Child’s Feeling
- 8. Have Patience
What is Tandem Breastfeeding?
Tandem breastfeeding is defined as two or more children of different ages whom breastfeed at the same time. It might refer to having one child on each breast simultaneously or children who take turns breastfeeding throughout the day.
Regardless of age, breast milk continues to provide important nutrients and disease protection for as long as a child breastfeeds. Breastfeeding also strengthens the emotional bond between a mother and her child, making the transition to a larger family easier.
1. Decide Who to Feed First
Many health care providers recommend feeding the newborn first (assuming both children ask to be fed at the same time), since the breast is the newborn’s only source of calories and nutrients.
This is more important during the first few days after birth, when colostrum is in short supply. After that, it’s first come, first serve!
The reasons for this are pretty self-explanatory: The older nursling can eat solid foods and drink other liquids, so the need is less. If the newborn doesn’t have free and frequent access to the breast, to drink to satiation, she might not thrive and your milk supply might drop.
2. Avoid the Rivalry
By tandem nursing, you’re already steps ahead in this journey. But tried to be careful not to fan any competitive fires.
3. Only Says Positive Language to the Older One
Reassuring your older nursling that there’s plenty of milk to go around. This might help your attitude as well.
4. Set Limits That Work On You
If you’ve nursed long enough that another baby has come along in the meantime, you’ve done good, Mama. This doesn’t mean you need to wean, but be open to making changes that make sense for your own emotional and physical health.
If breastfeeding is a challenge for you right now as you perfect your newborn’s latch or correct an older nursling’s, if your nipples are at all sore, if you’re exhausted still from birth, if you’re suffering any postpartum depression, if an older nursling’s demands make you feel agitated and stretched thin — take it easy on yourself.
On the other hand, if your older nursling is showing signs of weaning before either of you is ready, you might want to rethink such limits and try to nurse your older nursling more frequently.
And there’s no rule that says you must limit one of the nurslings, so if things are going well for you nursing more than one on demand, continue on.
5. Watch Your Nutrition
Breastfeeding tends to make you hungry and thirsty. Breastfeeding more than one can feel like it’s doubled the desire.
Make sure you have a drink nearby when you need it, and eat meals that keep you feeling strong. You might need to enlist someone else’s assistance with this, especially in the early days. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.
6. Work on That Latch
One thing you don’t need when you’re nursing two kid lets is a sore nipple. It goes without saying (but here I’ll say it anyway) that you should make sure your baby’s latch is nice and deep and wide and that there are no problems with a tongue-tie or other obstacles.
However, it can be just as critical to your breasts’ health to make sure your older nursling’s latch hasn’t become lazy, particularly if your milk dried over the pregnancy so the effort-reward system wasn’t in place for several months.
The older the child, the easier it can be to verbally and visually give some cues to correct the latch. Demonstrate a wide open mouth and then take your older nursling on the breast as far as you would your newborn.
Point out when it feels fine and when it hurts. Caution against the use of teeth. Even with an older nursling who’s not verbally adept (as a toddler might be), you can send a message by gently unlatching when things don’t feel right.
7. Respect Your Child’s Feeling
Take stock of how attached your child is to the nursing relationship. If you want to cut back or wean, do so gently and respectfully if at all possible.
If you can stick it out until things get better and your child can make the choice to wean, find a way through that doesn’t leave you feeling like a martyr but like, as you are, a mother.
Sometimes we do sucky things for our children’s sakes, and that’s OK. Sometimes we can’t do sucky things even for our children, and that’s OK, too. Find the balance that works for you, but keep your child’s needs and desires in mind as you seek a compromise.
8. Have Patience
Everything changes. Particularly the things about your children you’re certain will never change. All they do is grow, after all.
Enjoy these tandem breastfeeding moments. Memorize their profiles as they snuggle in close to feed. Smile as the older sibling helps the younger to latch. Congratulate yourself for nurturing these two young lives, and hug them close. It will just keep getting better.