Written by Pradeep
Being pregnant with twins are a blessing, and the gift comes along with an extra lot of work to be done. When we mean work, it is not just doubling your baby supplies but also includes the health of the babies and you. You need to be extra careful and eat healthy from the beginning, and your body has to support multiple lives.
If you are pregnant with twins, then this article is for you. Let us discuss more about twin pregnancies and what you should know. This article covers various topics such as the type of tests needed, the care to be taken, the chances for a C-section delivery etc. Let us delve in.
In This Article
Antenatal care is the health care services provided by professionals to take care of pregnant women throughout their pregnancies. In general, pregnancies with twins require more care and might involve more complications than normal ones. You shall ensure that you take proper antenatal care. You can choose to take the help of a midwife, doctor, or an obstetrician to take care of you.
Further, there is a misconception that twin pregnancies require the women to eat more during the antenatal period. The truth is, what you eat is more important than how much you eat. So, it would help if you eat healthy instead of doubling the quantity. Make sure you plan the diet with your midwife. You may also be required to consume supplements, including folate and iron.
Being pregnant with twins can be more tiring, and you may experience all the discomforts of pregnancies. Make sure you address all of them with your midwife. Though you can choose the birthing options, hospital birth is much preferred over health centres and home births—the primary reason being the readily available medical facilities to face all uncertainties.
Twin pregnancy requires additional appointments with the doctors and tests to be taken. The tests might not include more blood tests but may have a lot of ultrasounds. Check with your doctor for the type of twins.
If you are pregnant with twins with separate placentas, you might have regular ultrasounds during the 12th to 13th week, 20th week, and once every month until the babies are born.
If you are carrying twins with joint placenta, you may require more monitoring and involve complications. So, you might need to undergo ultrasounds once every two weeks from your 12th week of pregnancy.
In general, pregnancies with twins involve more antenatal appointments to maintain a healthy lifestyle. You can also get to know more about labour, pregnancy, early parenting, and birth.
Being pregnant with twins does not mean you will indeed have difficulties. But you must be aware and ready to face any complications that may arise during pregnancy. The following are some of the potential health complications in a twin pregnancy.
You might not complete the entire cycle of your pregnancy cycle with multiple gestations and doctors might ask you to be more cautious about the signs of preterm labour. If you notice any of the symptoms of premature delivery, you might be given shots to speed up the baby’s lung development.
Even after so much care, your babies might experience complications of any sort, including breathing and digestive difficulties, vision problems, and infections. The doctors do not encourage prolonging the pregnancies and taking bed rest because they fail to decrease complications and risk of death.
The blood sugar levels usually fluctuate drastically during pregnancy. Especially if you are carrying twins, there is an increased risk of gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is a medical condition in which high blood sugar levels can affect the pregnancy and the baby’s health. You can consult a dietitian or an endocrinologist to manage your blood sugar levels during pregnancy.
When you are carrying multiples, you may have high blood pressure issues. This is because your heart is working harder to meet the increased blood flow and oxygen requirements of your twin pregnancy. High blood pressure or gestational hypertension during pregnancy can be risky for the mother as well as the babies. Your OBGYN will constantly monitor your BP levels throughout pregnancy making sure they are within safe limits.
Vaginal delivery is possible for twins only if the first baby is head-down position. If the position is in breach, the doctors may recommend a Section delivery. There might be situations where the first baby is delivered through a vaginal birth and the second requires a C-section. If there are more multiples, the doctors won’t take the risk and recommend only C-sections.
Twin-twin transfusion is a situation where, in the case of a shared placenta, the blood vessels in the placenta lead to one baby receiving more blood, and the other one might receive much lesser than what is required. This is a serious issue that might lead to heart complications, and you may have to undergo fetal procedures while you are still pregnant.
Apart from the above, there are a few more complications worth noting. They are
[Read : Vanishing Twin Syndrome – Explained]
Pregnancy involves a lot of changes in the women’s body. Especially if you are pregnant with twins, you may notice that your pregnancy symptoms appear much earlier than usual. These include
The significant body change with twins’ pregnancy is the number of kilograms you put up. While single pregnancies result in an upward trend of 10 to 15 kgs in weight, twin pregnancy may result in 16 – 20 kgs.
A few other body changes that are quite common in twin pregnancy are
These changes might affect your mood and how you feel about your body. You can discuss the body changes with your midwife or doctor and gain the confidence to handle the changes.
[Read : ]
Healthy eating is an essential aspect of pregnancy, especially with a twin pregnancy. You need to pick up a balanced diet enriched with vitamins and minerals. Keep in mind that your food has to cater to the needs of three lives. That does not mean that you should eat more, and it just means that you need to eat more healthy food.
Your midwife or doctors might suggest you take the help of a dietician or a nutritionist to guide you through the dietary needs of protein, carbs, folate, iron, iodine, calcium, and all other nutrients. Small multiple meals spread throughout the day should do the trick for you.
[Read : Twin Pregnancy Diet Plan]
In most cases, moms carrying twins go into labour as early as 36 to 37 weeks compared with single pregnancies at 40 weeks. If there are any complications with the twin pregnancy, the doctors might suggest an early delivery before 36 weeks. It will depend on multiple factors such as the health of the mother and the babies, the combined weight of the babies, ultrasound reports, the placing of the babies in the uterus and the appearance of complications.
Many mothers have undergone vaginal birth and Caesarean birth. There is no fixed rule about the kind of birth. But you need to discuss your body and health condition with your midwife or doctor about your body and health condition. Based on your health conditions, you may be suggested a C-section if there are complications. Else, you can naturally have a vaginal birth. In general, twin pregnancies involve a lot of complications, and based on them, the doctors may recommend Caesarean birth.
Parenting twins is a much more delicate and complicated task than twin pregnancy. Here are some tips that could help you prepare for parenting twins.
Giving birth to twins is a miracle and a gift of nature. Twin and multiple gestations are common with assisted fertility conceptions though they can happen naturally too. Despite the joy twin pregnancy can bring in, the pregnant mother must remember to stay careful, healthy, monitor her vitals properly, keep up with all appointments and follow the doctor’s instructions carefully.
You need to know that
Never do the following things when you are pregnant.
There are no proven studies in India that show the common gender in twins.
During the fifth month of pregnancy, you can expect the following.
When you are pregnant with twins, keep an eye on your sleep patterns.