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Carrying Multiples Twins

Carrying Multiples Twins

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So, you've gone for an ultrasound, and it shows you not one baby, but two! Are you feeling excited but overwhelmed? For many parents expecting multiples, the news is both scary and wonderful at the same time. Fears about how to physically, emotionally and financially care for two new babies is a concern.

There are a number of things that you'll have to do differently if you're expecting multiples. There are the obvious things like buying two of every outfit, or opting for a double stroller instead of a single. However, a woman's health is also affected by carrying twins, and she must make accommodations to ensure the healthiest pregnancy possible for her and her two bundles of joy.

Fraternal twins are a result of two separate eggs being fertilized, while identical twins occur when a single is fertilized and then splits in two. Siamese twins are a rare occurrence, and are a result of one egg not completely splitting before fertilization.

Doctors consider any pregnancy with twins or more high risk. Although this sounds alarming, the majority of multiple pregnancies are healthy. A larger number of twins are born prematurely, and if it's too early the baby may have undeveloped lungs, brain and immune system. Conditions like preeclampsia and diabetes are drastically higher in women pregnant with twins. As a woman pregnant with multiples, you'll have to pay special attention to your growing body.

The 'vanishing twin' situation occurs in about 20 percent of all pregnancies involving twins. This means that one of the twins miscarries while the other one lives in the womb. This risk climbs to 40 percent with triplets.

Women carrying multiples should gain between 35 and 40 pounds during her pregnancy, as compared to the normal pregnancy weight gain of 25 to 35 pounds. This can be more uncomfortable for women of a smaller size, and may lead to an increase in cramps or backache during pregnancy.

In some cases, it's true that more babies means increases in morning sickness. While some women carrying multiples are lucky when it comes to morning sickness, others experience heightened feelings of nausea and tiredness than mothers carrying one child. Each multiple pregnancy is different, and so are the symptoms associated with it.

An AFP test is often what makes doctors suspicious that a woman is carrying twins. This test measures protein that is secreted by the baby's liver, and if the results are abnormally high, it can sometimes indicate twins.

Although many medical professionals are divided on the subject of in utero movement of twins, some mothers and even doctors swear that twins move in the womb much earlier than single babies. Mothers of multiples often say that they felt flutters much earlier than they did with previous pregnancies with just one baby.



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