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Disclaimer: The information in this post is for educational purposes only. I am not a doctor. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider.

Babies, Bottles and Breasts: The Best Breast Pump for Twins

Babies, Bottles and Breasts: The Best Breast Pump for Twins #breastfeeding #breastpump #twinsIdeally, all moms of multiples could breastfeed their babes–simultaneously–without a hitch. But, in reality, there are innumerable difficulties which can spring up and make breastfeeding difficult (or even occasionally impossible) for mothers of multiples. Twins are more likely to spend time in the NICU, where they are often tube-fed or intravenously fed, and sometimes complications from surgeries or prematurity continue even after the babies are brought home.

Consequently, many mothers of twins end up pumping, either temporarily or permanently, for one or both babies. If you find yourself facing the prospect of spending hours in front of a whirring machine with cups attached to your chest, you want to make sure that you are using the best breast pump for twins.

Benefits of a Hospital-grade Pump

My twins were born two months early and were too immature to have developed the suck-swallow-breath reflex. During the two months my boys spent in the NICU, I pumped. A lot. ‘Round the clock. During this time (the first two months postpartum) breast milk supply is being established. How often and how long your nipples are stimulated, signals to your body how much milk you need to produce. Your body is learning to respond to the babies’ needs without over or under-producing. So, it is imperative that your pumping schedule closely mimic a baby’s. It is equally important that the pump you use is able to empty the breasts in a manner most similar to a baby’s. A hospital-grade breastpump is necessary to maintain the prolactin and oxytocin levels your body needs to produce milk for two. If your baby is staying in the NICU, most hospitals will have one on hand to use while at the hospital. I recommend the medela symphony, a high-quality hospital-grade breastpump. Talk to your lactation consultant about the breastfeeding equipment options available at your hospital. Click here to learn about how to get your insurance to pay for a hospital-grade pump.

Guidelines for the Best Breast Pump for Twins

When considering which breast pump is best for you, you’ll want to look at:

  • An electric pump
  • A double pump, meaning that it expresses from both breasts at once
  • A reliable, high-quality motor to imitate the strength of a baby’s sucking
  • A “rhythm” or pattern of expression which imitates a baby’s sucking and accommodates a natural let-down
  • A durable design to endure frequent use
  • Personal collection parts (cups and tubing) to prevent cross-contamination if multiple mothers are using the same pump in the hospital or if you are purchasing a used pump.
  • (see more tips for choosing a breast pump)

One of my sons also had complications because of numerous infections he contracted during his hospital stay. He came home fed by a tube which went from his nose to his small intestine. Breastfeeding was out of the question until his digestive system healed. At this point, I found myself breastfeeding one son and pumping for the other. In this case, a hospital-grade pump is still ideal. If that is not an option, a high-quality double electric pump will suffice. If you are not using a hospital-grade pump, it is important that your pump cycles 45-55 times a minute to imitate a baby’s sucking pattern. I recommend the Medela Pump-in-Style (find one here), although there are other reliable pumps by Medela, Ameda, or Avent, for example, that would work. Talk to your lactation consultant or a La Leche League chapter about further recommendations.

Did you pump for your twins? Which do you think is the best breast pump for twins?

Edited photo, photo credit: My Mommys Place via photopin cc

Sharing at My Joy-Filled Life.

Tucked away in the sprawling corn fields of Northwest Iowa, Lael Griess is a busy mother of four and wife to a pastor. Her twin four-year-old sons keep her picking up messes, her precocious 3-year-old daughter keeps her answering questions, her 10-month-old baby daughter keeps her smiling, and her faith in Jesus Christ keeps her eyes fixed on things eternal. In her spare time she enjoys cooking and baking, walking, crafting, gardening, entertaining, and reading. And when she finally has a chance to sit down, she is usually breastfeeding.


  1. […] just the right machine for you and your baby. (Got twins? Or triplets? Quads or more?? Find out which pump is best for multiples.) You can also learn to express by hand for those times when carting a pump around are […]

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