If there’s one situation that can drive any sane parent to madness, it’s the doctor’s office. Going to the doctor with twins? Now that’s just cruel. Between the long waits, grimy sick kids, shots, poking and prodding…a visit to the doctor’s office with twins is the stuff nightmares are made of. Thankfully, there are a few tips and tricks I live by to make a difficult experience just a tiny, but important, bit better. The visit will still be a challenge. I’d hate to say we skip in with smiles and giggles and it’s a piece of cake. That would be unfair (and a total lie). These tips and tricks will not make your visits a breeze. But they will make it a little more bearable. You can do it!
1. Take the very first appointment of the day. I know. Getting up at the crack of dawn and out the door especially early to go to the doctor with twins sounds extra horrendous. Trust me, you’ll thank me later. Arriving to the doctor’s office at the start of the day gives you more patient nurses, well-rested doctors and exponentially less delays. Often, you’ll have the waiting room to yourself and the start of a new day means everything is clean and less germy, especially your exam room. Avoid the crowds, avoid the germs, avoid frustrated doctors running hours behind. Get in, get out.
2. Take TWO appointment blocks. A good administrative staff knows that a visit to the doctor with twins takes just as long, if not more so, than two singleton visits. Even though they arrive at the same time and are seen by the doctor at the same time, make sure to claim two appointment blocks so that your doctor is not pressed for time and can patiently and thoroughly engage with you and your children. A rushed visit means important details can be overlooked and questions left unanswered.
3. Come prepared. Spend a few moments the night before making it easier on yourself by planning ahead. Pick out easy on/easy off clothes and shoes. Write down questions/concerns beforehand. Pack a favorite toy or book, along with a simple snack to pull out in a pinch. Don’t be afraid to pull out the cell phone games, YouTube, Leap Pads, etc. to keep them occupied and happy. This is all hands on deck, no rules here. I ALWAYS have a very favorite treat at the ready for when we’re done. Tough visits deserve a reward and a return to the land of happiness.
4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. One of the first lessons I learned as a twin mom was that the days of doing it myself were long gone. I very quickly embraced the idea that I would ask and accept any help, anytime, anywhere. Whether this comes as a request for an extra set of hands and a best friend or Auntie Becky to help manage the crazy, or enlisting a second nurse to help as you carry kids back and forth to get weighed and measured, ask for help. When the boys were babies, if I had to go alone, I had a second nurse on hand for the entire appointment. It was the safest way to properly care for them and a good doctor’s office won’t complain.
5. Sticker me. A visit to the doctor with twins leaves most multi-moms exhausted and barely coherent, much less well informed. When the nurse told me what the boys weighed and their lengths, it literally went in one ear and out the other as I stared at her with wide eyes and a screaming child (or two). Grandparents and other inquiring minds would ask later, and I’d have no idea. I started asking the nurse to “sticker me.” At each appointment, she writes down the date, name, height and weight on growth stickers for each boy. I pop them in my purse and then pop them in the boys’ baby books when we get home.
Do you have any inside tips and tricks that help make your visits to the doctor with the kiddos in tow more bearable? Be sure to comment and share! We’re all in this together and we need all the help we can get!