If your twins are born before the 32nd week they will most likely
have a stay in the NICU. Your twins may be fed through a feeding tube.
This will be until they have matured and are capable of sucking
swallowing and breathing at the same time. This is when breastfeeding preemies or bottle feeding is possible.
The length of time you will stay in the NICU with your premature
twins will depend on the gestation age of your babies and any
complications that are present themselves.
How to care for Premature Twins:
Before you enter the
NICU wash your hands thoroughly, as preemie twins have not yet built up
an immune system it could be vital to their survival.
Depending on the medical
condition of your twins, you may be able to help with things like
diaper changes and feeding. If you are unable to do this it can be hard
but even the smallest things can help you bond with your twins.
Feeding premature twins
your breast milk is ideal as breast milk is produced to the needs of
your babies. It also has antibodies and all nutrients required for their
development. To begin with you are unlikely to be able to breastfeed
directly. Pumping your breast milk will help feed your twins, get your
milk in and create a supply for later.
If you are able to,
holding your babies is what they really need, it makes them feel secure
and not alone. Skin-to-skin is best and mom or dad can do this, hold
your baby (with only a diaper on) to your bare chest, known askangaroo care. This can do wonders for your twins.
Simulating the uterus
with deep touches, which NICU staff will teach you, helps your babies
feel secure. Keep in mind that over stimulating preemies can cause heart
rates and oxygen levels to shift. Also keep things simple as preemies
tire very quickly, for example keep any type of touching and holding
simple, when cuddling/touching let it just be that with no talking or
premature twins are unable to suck or swallow due to immaturity, your
babies will be fed through a tube which is inserted through the nose or
In the NICU
there is lots of equipment that make lots of bleeping noises. Machines
and equipment that may help you twins include: - IVs and linesfor fluids and medications that may be needed. - Feeding tubesfor babies who need extra nutrients and/or are unable to breast or bottle feed. - Isolettes or Incubatorsis an enclosed bed to help manage your little ones temperature. - Monitorsthat track your babies vitals like heart and breathing rates, oxygen levels and temperature. - Blood pressureis monitored by cuffs placed around their ankles though some babies will have anArterial Linewhich is similar to an IV which monitor blood pressure and oxygen levels. - Ventilatorsto help with breathing if needed. - Infant warmersfor extra warmth. - Phototherapyis used forJaundicewhich is common especially in premature babies. Jaundice is a condition where the skin and whites of the eyes turn yellow.
You will most likely be discharged before your babies.
have a pen and notebook or diary with you, write down any questions you
want to ask the nurses or neonatologist, you won’t forget a thing.
any help that’s offered to you from family and friends, don’t forget
you can ask for help if you are struggling with things like care for
your older children or household duties.
with preemies can be difficult, joining a support group for parents
with premature babies can be of great help. The hospital will most
likely be able to assist you with this along with other resources like
classes for preemie care.
NICU staffs are there to help your twin babies; they will try to make
your experience as comfortable as possible for your twins and your
family. Remember to ask all and any questions you may have to help you
understand how the NICU works and the condition of your premature twins.
You're Expecting Twins!
Providing Useful Advice And Information From Pre-natal To Post-natal Is
The Purpose Of This Guidebook For Mothers Expecting Twins. A Complete
Reference And Resource Guide For Parents Expecting Twins Or Multiples.