Learn five tips for surviving nighttime with twins when you and your partner are exhausted and could use some extra help.
After dark is typically the most challenging time of day for parents of newborn twins. When your babies are very little they don’t know the difference between day and night. Your sweet little twinnies will start to resemble tiny vampires, asleep all day and up all night!
Sometimes you’ll think to yourself, “How am I ever going to survive this??” Here’s a few tips to help make nighttime a bit smoother with newborn twins. nighttime with twins
Talk to your spouse/partner about your nighttime roles
Communication is key! We can’t stress enough how important it is to sit down with your partner (in the light of day) and have a calm, rational conversation about nighttime roles. nighttime with twins
You’ll want to discuss the schedule you’ll keep with the twins, if you’ll be splitting nighttime “shifts” with your partner or doing each feeding together, and who will be responsible for each of the various tasks (making bottles, changing diapers, etc.)
The more you can iron out these details and make an action plan, the smoother your nights will go.
Have a bedside sleeper that aids you with care
Keeping your babies nearby at night can help the nighttime feeding process go more smoothly, especially if you’re breastfeeding. A bedside sleeper will ensure your babies have safe sleep but are also nearby when they need to feed. nighttime with twins
Have everything you need close by and ready
Before you head off to bed, prepare everything you can in advance so it’s all ready to go when you have to get up for the next feeding. Prepare bottles, have extra pacifiers handy, and stock fresh burp cloths, bibs, and diapers.
Don't be afraid to ask for help
The exhausting and taxing nights with twins can really wear you down, but knowing that relief is in sight will help you get through it easier. nighttime with twins
If you have close friends or family nearby, ask if one of them might be willing to help overnight to ensure that you can get a solid chunk of sleep.
If you don’t have volunteer help, and it fits your budget, look into hiring a night nurse for a few nights a week to help you get some much needed rest. nighttime with twins
If that’s not an option, talk to your partner about tag-teaming the night feedings so you can alternate getting a solid 5-6 hours of sleep overnight.
Keep looking forward to the next milestone
Always, always, ALWAYS keep in the forefront of your mind that this is only temporary. Your babies will grow and they will start sleeping longer stretches. nighttime with twins
Moving from a 3-hour feeding schedule to a 4-hour feeding schedule will be your first goal. That means you’ll only be doing 6 feedings a day (and when you’re doing 8 feedings a day, that makes a HUGE difference!) nighttime with twins
Talk to your pediatrician about when you can make that transition to a 4-hour schedule, which will depend on your babies weights. And keep looking forward to future milestones:
- when they are finally big enough that you don’t have to wake them to feed
- when they are taking solid naps throughout the day to give you more breaks
- when they are old enough and big enough to start sleeping through the night!
Either through diligent sleep coaching/training or through sheer luck, one day your babies will start to sleep through the night. That first night when they both sleep through the night, together, in the same room, will be the best night of your life — LOL! nighttime with twins
But seriously, you will get 8 straight hours of sleep, wake up, and think to yourself, “OMG — are my babies still alive??” You’ll rush in to check on them and you’ll be amazed to see that they are still sleeping! They slept through the night! Hallelujah!
All your hard work will have paid off and you’ll finally be on your way to a more restful life. Keep your eye on the prize, stay the course, and I promise this will be YOU someday!