Carrying twin or multiple babies is one of many excitements associated with pregnancy. The first thing that comes in mind is whether the womb has enough space to hold more than one baby.
Depending on the number of babies there are different names for multiple births. For example two is twins, three is triplets, for four it is quadruplets and for five it is quintuplets etc. Out of these most common multiple pregnancies are twins and triplets. One out of 8 pregnant women delivers twins and one in 6,400 pregnant women delivers triplets. A woman having quadruplets and quintuplets is rarely found.
Twin or multiple births can be monozygotic or dizygotic.
Monozygotic - when a single fertilized egg in the uterus (also called as zygote) splits into two or more embryos, is called as monozygotic. The monozygotic babies have the same genetic material and are of the same sex.
Dizygotic Ė when multiple eggs are fertilized in the uterus to grow into multiple babies, then it is called as dizygotic. The dizygotic babies do not share same genetic material and can be of the same or opposite sexes. They resemble each other just like any other pair of siblings.
Symptoms of twin pregnancy, multiple pregnancy
Signs and symptoms of multiple pregnancies can vary from woman to woman. Some women experienced typical symptoms of multiple pregnancies while others donít even notice that they were carrying multiple babies until birth. The most common symptoms of multiple pregnancy are
- Woman gains weight more rapidly.
- Large womb size in first trimester is a strong sign of multiple pregnancy.
- Severe morning sickness
- Severe nausea
- Vomiting tendency
- Extreme fatigue
- Early movement of the baby in the uterus.
- High Alphfetoprotein test. This test is use to measure the protein level in the motherís blood secreted by fetal lever. If a woman is carrying more than one baby then it increases the protein level. High result of alphfetoprotein can also indicate some problem with your single baby.
Reason behind twin or multiple pregnancy
- Heredity can be one reason. If a family has a history of multiple pregnancies then it is most likely that they have multiple pregnancy.
- Old age. A woman whose age is more than 30 has more chances of multiple pregnancy.
- If a woman has multiple pregnancy earlier then there is increased chance of having multiple pregnancy again.
- Infertility treatment. Women getting treatment of infertility such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) or ovulation are more likely to have multiple pregnancies. As these techniques produced multiple eggs which are then fertilized and implanted in the uterus.
Twin pregnancy or multiple pregnancy complications
Normally, multiple pregnancies do not mean minor problems throughout pregnancy. In many cases multiple pregnancy can have high risk complications.
- Premature birth
- Hypertension due to carrying multiple babies.
- Birth defects
- Increased chance of cesarean delivery
- Abnormal amount of amniotic fluid is found in babies who share placenta
- Babies are likely to be weaker
As multiple pregnancies pose more challenges, therefore it is advisable to be in contact with your doctor continuously for safe deliveries.
Read more about breast feeding postion and Benefits of breast feeding for the baby and monther.