Twin and Multiple Pregnancies – BabyCare
Twin and multiple pregnancies
In the case of twins, a distinction is made between identical (hereditary) and dizygotiic twins. Identical twins arise when a fertilized egg divides into two equal embryonic structures. This division of the egg takes place in the first week after fertilization. As a rule, each twin has its own amniotic sac, although the placentas merge into one another. Identical twins are also always same-sex. Dizygoti twins arise from two different fertilized egg cells. For this reason, they can also differ in terms of gender, hair color, blood group, etc. Twins occur in about 1:85 births. 70% of them are dizygoti, 30% monozygotic. In triplets, one in 7,225 births is a multiple pregnancy. Multiple pregnancies often come about after fertility treatments.
The diagnosis of twin or multiple pregnancy is made during the first ultrasound examination in the 5th to 8th week of pregnancy. Signs of multiple pregnancies are often: persistent severe nausea in the morning. However, this can only be determined by pregnant women who have already been pregnant in order to have a comparison of what level of nausea is normal. Furthermore, unusually rapid weight gain is also a sign of a multiple pregnancy. The doctor also recognizes a multiple pregnancy by the greater degree of development of the uterus. If the doctor then diagnoses a twin pregnancy, he will immediately classify the pregnant woman as high-risk pregnancies, since these pregnancies are generally considered to be high-risk pregnancies. However, the expectant mother should not be unsettled by this term. All that is meant is that possible risks should be eliminated from the outset through particularly intensive precautionary measures and monitoring.
Multiple mothers suffer more often from pregnancy symptoms, and the symptoms are often more pronounced, after all, two children grow up in the uterus, which of course puts more strain on the pregnant woman’s body. The pregnant woman’s body adjusts to this in the first few weeks. The amount of blood increases, the uterus becomes larger. Therefore, weight gain in the early stages of pregnancy can be a sign that twins are on the way. By the twelfth week, some mothers of twins have already put on around 6 kilos. Up to the birth of the children it is usually 17 to 20 kilos (for a child it is 8 to 13 kilos). So that they and their two unborn babies are well, expecting twin mothers should pay attention to a few things during pregnancy.
Twin mothers need to drink more. Preferably a glass of water every hour. This is the best way to keep blood pressure and the risk of gestosis low.
Like other mothers-to-be, twin mothers should be careful with their diet. It is important to have a balanced diet with lots of fruit, vegetables, whole grain and dairy products. In no case should you go on a diet for fear of gaining weight. But you don’t need to eat for three either.
Despite a balanced diet, deficiencies can occur in twin pregnancies. Many doctors therefore recommend taking prophylactic iodine and iron supplements.
Complications in pregnancy are slightly increased, so multiple pregnancies are observed even more intensively. If you are at risk of premature labor, you should avoid overexertion and stress. In the critical seventh and eighth month in particular, you should take it easy to avoid premature birth. Some women can no longer work as early as the 28th week.
Because of the higher physical stress and possible risks, you should treat yourself to a lot of rest. The pregnant woman needs a lot of rest, especially in the last weeks of pregnancy.
Furthermore, mothers of twins should start preparing for birth sooner, because twins are usually born earlier. Average of the 37th week. In the 38th week they are considered to be born on the date. Of course, the children are therefore usually smaller and lighter than other children. As early as the 24th week, the two unborn babies are starting to feel tight in their stomachs. Between the 26th and 28th week, the twins weigh around three kilograms together. The tension in the uterus increases, which can lead to premature labor.
Regular checkups are therefore particularly important in the case of twin pregnancies. In the last trimester of pregnancy, it may therefore be necessary to go to a check-up every week.
Multiple birth is also something special and it is recommended that you choose a large maternity clinic that has experience with multiple births. Also, check to see if a children’s clinic is attached in case the newborns need special care. Whether you can give birth naturally or by caesarean section depends on the individual case. The vaginal delivery of twins is possible if the first child lies in the skull position, the pregnancy is at least 34 weeks old and the children are estimated to be two kilograms. If you have triplets or even quadruplets, you will almost always be advised to have a caesarean section.
After giving birth, many mothers of twins are of the opinion that there is not enough milk to breastfeed two children. However, this is usually not true, because the woman’s body only has to adjust to this state, which can take a few days. So you should give your body some time to adjust to breastfeeding two children. After that, however, this is usually possible without any problems.
Dr. Renate Kirschner (Doctor of Education; active in social science research and consulting for more than 25 years)
Dr. Wolf Kirschner (Doctor of Philosophy; since 1997 active in the areas of epidemiology, evaluation and intervention research, health promotion and prevention)
Priv. Doz. med. Dr. rer. nat. Axel Schäfer (doctor of medicine, doctor of natural sciences, gynecologist)
Approved by BabyCare’s Scientific Advisory Committee.
Created by: Ahmad ZaghmoutCreated on: August 24, 2016Last updated on: February 17, 2020
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