Large For Gestational Age Or Gaining Weight Rapidly
There’s no doubt that carrying two babies has a big impact on a woman’s body. Not only are moms of twins likely to gain more weight, but their uterus will also stretch and expand to accommodate the extra baby.
Most doctors and midwives will monitor weight gain and fundal height during routine appointments. An excess of either may point to a multiple pregnancy, although there are plenty of other explanations, such as increased levels of amniotic fluid. If your caregiver has reason to suspect multiples, they’ll investigate further.
Possible Signs Of Twins
Early on in your pregnancy, there may not be obvious signs of twins. However, some people may experience signs they are pregnant with twins that include early and severe morning sickness and showing early. Some people also have an intuition that they are having twins or have a family history of twins so they may suspect twins are possible. Here are six more signs of twins you may experience.
You Feel Fetal Movement Early
One of the most exciting moments of pregnancy is feeling the baby move within your womb. That fluttery, swishing, quivery feeling from deep within your belly connects you to your unborn child, cementing the bond between mother and baby.
Some women describe it as butterflies or a swimming fish. Usually, women can feel this sensation, known as quickening, about midway through the pregnancy, between 16 and 25 weeks’ gestation.
Although there’s not much science to support it, some moms of twins report feeling movement earlier and more frequently in pregnancy, sometimes as early as the first trimester. It might even be their first clue that there are more than just two tiny hands and two tiny feet waving around in the womb.
Women who have had a previous pregnancy generally recognize fetal movement earlier. After all, they have a basis of comparison and more awareness of the sensation, leading them to conclude that there’s something more.
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How To Tell You’re Pregnant With Twins Before Your Ultrasound
These signs may indicate that you’re pregnant with twins ahead of your first ultrasound.
Being pregnant is always exciting but what if you are suspecting that you are carrying a bundle of two. There are ways to determine if you are expecting multiples such as early signs of pregnancy symptoms and other factors such as genetics, body weight, and maternal age. However, no matter how much you suspect that you are carrying twins the only way to determine for sure is at your first ultrasound appointment with your doctor.
Early Signs Of Your Twin Pregnancy
Youre starting to feel crampy, but your period hasnt arrived. Youre having frequent urination, breast tenderness, your heart rate feels off, and you just have a nagging feeling that something is off. Could it be?? You take a home pregnancy test, and BOOM! Youre pregnant! YAY!! Congratulations!! But this pregnancy feels different. You cant put your finger on it, but you have a feeling that you may be having twin babies. At this point, you have no proof that youre having twins and you cant say you are really experiencing twin pregnancy symptoms over regular singleton pregnancy symptoms, but are there signs of twin pregnancy that you should know about?
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How Is A Twin Pregnancy Belly Different From A Singleton Belly
With a twin pregnancy belly, your bump will show early on. You may need maternity clothes shortly after finding out you are pregnant. Your expanding bump may also cause you to outgrow clothes quickly because of extra weight gain. Its common to put on around 50 lbs. during a twin pregnancy, compared to 30 lbs. for a singleton baby.
How Soon Can You Tell If Youre Pregnant With Twins
If you want to know for sure if youre pregnant with twins, youll have to wait until your first ultrasound. Most pregnant people have their first ultrasound somewhere around 10-12 weeks of pregnancy. Sometimes, your healthcare provider will use a handheld doppler at your first appointment instead of an ultrasound. The handheld doppler will pick up your babys heartbeat. If you prefer to have an ultrasound, you can request one!
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Your Twin Pregnancy In The Third Trimester
In the third trimester, some of the most common twin or singleton pregnancy symptoms that could appear week by week include backaches as well as swelling in your hands, feet, and legs. As a result, you might find it hard to sleep or walk comfortably.Meanwhile, your twins are getting ready for the big day! During this time, theyâre listening to familiar sounds, such as your voice, and are likely settling into the optimal position for a vaginal delivery, which means both babies have their head down.In some cases, only one twin may be facing headfirst, or both twins are facing feet first. Check the visual below to get an idea of how your babies might settle in the womb. And keep in mind that with twin pregnancies, thereâs a higher likelihood of needing a cesarean delivery or giving birth prematurely.
Although you might have checked our due date calculator, be aware that in an average twin pregnancy, twins are born closer to 35 weeks than to 40 weeks, so itâs worth getting prepared early. Make sure you have doubles of all the clothes, cribs, wipes, and diapers youâll need! And since double the fun means double the price, earn cash and rewards by downloading the Pampers Club App.
Read on to learn about twin pregnancy development and symptoms, week by week during the third trimester.
Are There Early Signs Of Twins
You won’t know for sure if you’re carrying twins until you have an ultrasound, but there may be a few early signs. Some telltale early signs that you may be carrying twins include more severe morning sickness, extreme breast tenderness, or gaining weight more quickly.
Extreme fatigue might be a sign that you’re carrying twins, but being super tired during pregnancy can also be caused by things like a normal singleton pregnancy, stress, a hectic work life, and a lot of responsibilities. Although it’s possible, extreme fatigue early on doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re definitely carrying twins.
The same goes for excessive morning sickness, which many women pregnant with multiples do experience but many do not.
Other early signs of a twin pregnancy can include a greater appetite , “showing” earlier in pregnancy, and feeling the babies’ movement in two different parts of the stomach.
If you feel that you’re having above average morning sickness, early pregnancy exhaustion, lots of breast tenderness, and are gaining weight quicker than you expected, you may be pregnant with twins.
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So What Are The Signs Youre Having Twins
There are a lot of classic symptoms for twins, which are all generally down to the increased levels of Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin Hormone, or hCG, which is the pregnancy hormone that causes all of the wonderful changes that come with falling pregnant.
A lot of twin pregnancy symptoms are actually the same as for regular pregnancies, just stronger, or more than youd expect for someone as far along as you might be, so if this is your first time, just go with it and wait for your scans to confirm what you might already suspect.
As you read down this list, remember that pregnancy affects every woman differently, and you might experience some, all or even none of the below symptoms as you go through the different stages.
Belly Bump Shows Faster
Are you noticing your belly growing pretty fast? There are a few different things that can contribute to that!
If youve ever been pregnant before, your uterus and abdominal muscles are already a bit stretched, so that can contribute to a baby bump sooner.
Another reason is that maybe your dates are off and youre actually further along in your pregnancy than you thought.
If it is neither of those things and weight gain is happening faster, maybe it is a sign of a twin pregnancy!
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Prepare For The Postpartum Period
New parents of multiples are at higher risk for postpartum depression, I think because theres a higher chance that you have one or two babies that have to go to the NICU, said Kalish. You also are probably more sleep-deprived. In Goodnights experience, parents of multiples, even those who did not carry the pregnancy, describe more marital stress, a slower return to work, financial stress, more sleep deprivation, he said. You dont need to fear developing postpartum depression just because youre pregnant with multiples, but if you know to look out for it, you might notice it and be able to get help sooner.
Goodnight recommends that his patients begin setting up their social support networks about halfway through pregnancy , whether thats asking family or friends when they can come to help, asking a friend to set up a meal or chore train, or lining up a postpartum doula or night nurse. Looking for a group of other parents of multiples, either online or in person, can be helpful too, according to Ring. And getting a pediatrician lined up early in the third trimester, said Robinson, means you wont have to look for one while juggling two newborns even if you go into labor earlier than expected. If possible, choose one near you with easy parking or transit accessibility, because transporting multiple babies is harder.
No : You Are More Likely To Become Pregnant With Twins Naturally When You Are In Your 30s And 40s
We all hear that the older we get, the harder it is to conceive. But it may actually make a twin pregnancy more likely, says Abdulla Al-Khan, MD, the director and chief of maternal and fetal medicine and surgery at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. “Once you are 25 or into your 30s and 40s, ovulatory cycles are not regular anymore. If you are not regular and do ovulate, you could be ovulating two follicles at the same time.” Voila! A twin pregnancy — without assisted reproductive technologies.
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Do I Need To Double My Caloric Intake During A Twin Pregnancy
A common misconception surrounding twin pregnancy is that you need todouble your caloric intake to provide your babies with enough nutrients.However, pregnancy nutrition guidelines arent simply based on the numberof babies youre carrying. Instead, theyre based on yourbody mass indexat the time you became pregnant.
Your doctor will make individualized recommendations based on your startingweight. On average, its estimated that a womans caloric requirements willincrease about 40 percent for a twin pregnancy. Whats most important,though, is that a woman eats as healthy as possible.
No : Risk Of Developing Gestational Diabetes Is Higher In Twin Pregnancies
“The gestational diabetes risk is higher in twin pregnancy,” says Monga. She notes that gestational diabetes can mean having larger babies and needing a C-section delivery — but twins tend not to be big babies. Still, developing gestational diabetes during pregnancy also makes you more likely to develop type 2 diabetes later in life, she says.
Your Resting Heart Rate Is Increased
Just like your basal metabolic rate increases, your resting heart rate will increase during pregnancy. A normal resting heart rate is about 70 bpm , rising to 80-100 bpm in pregnancy. People who are pregnant with twins or multiples may have a resting heart rate higher than 100 bpm. If your resting heart rate is above 100 bpm, you may be diagnosed with tachycardia. Tachycardia can be a normal pregnancy condition but needs to be monitored by your primary care provider.
You can help keep your heart rate within a normal range by not smoking, reducing stress, and using mindfulness techniques like meditation and deep breathing.
When Will You Find Out You’re Having Twins
Typically, you’ll find out if you’re having twins during a first trimester ultrasound. An ultrasound will usually be able to detect a twin pregnancy early on, but sometimes a twin pregnancy can be detected even earlier through a pregnancy blood test.
If you have a multiples pregnancy then you might have higher levels of human chorionic gonadotropin , aka the “pregnancy hormone.” But elevated hCG doesn’t automatically mean that you’re having twins either. You will still need to confirm your pregnancy status with an ultrasound.
The same goes for detecting twins with a Doppler, which detects fetal heartbeat sounds. A skilled doctor or midwife may be able to find two heartbeats but, because you may be able to hear a single heartbeat in two different areas of the mom’s stomach, this is not the best way to tell if you are having twins. Instead, have your doctor do an ultrasound to find out.
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Intense Nausea And Vomiting
Due to elevated levels of hCG, people carrying multiples may experience more nausea and vomiting than those carrying only one baby, explains Dr. Greves. Hyperemesis gravidarum, a condition that’s often compared to morning sickness , is also more likely with a multiple pregnancy. It causes nausea and vomiting so severe that a person may need intravenous fluids and other assistance, Dr. Greves says.
What Are The Signs Of A Twin Pregnancy
Certain circumstances are consistent with carrying more than one fetus. But experiencing the signs of a twin pregnancy doesnt always mean a person is carrying two fetuses.
These signs, some of which occur in the early weeks of pregnancy, include:
- Early fetal movement.
- Fetal movement in more than one area.
- Fundal height is greater than gestational age. The baby bump is measuring larger than expected.
- Gaining weight quickly.
- Having high levels of hCG, a pregnancy hormone, or alpha-fetoprotein , a protein made by the fetuss liver.
- Hearing more than one heartbeat on a fetal Doppler.
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Showing Sooner Than Usual
If you are expecting twins or multiples, your belly may be bigger than expecting one baby. Looking “bigger” than would be expected for how far along you are can be a sign that you are expecting twins or multiples. Still, every body and every pregnancy is different.
Your doctor or midwife may notice that your fundal height measurements are significantly higher than expected if you are pregnant with multiples. To measure your fundal height, your care provider measures the distance between your pubic bone and the top of your uterus. After about 12 weeks of pregnancy, this measurement is an indicator of how well your baby, or babies, are growing.
One Or More Twin Risk Factors
Certain people have a greater chance of getting pregnant with twins than others. Some factors that can raise your odds include:
- Family history of fraternal twins
- Advanced maternal age
- Using ovulation induction medications like clomiphene or letrozole, which are associated with a 10% risk of multiple gestation
- Above-average maternal height
- History of previous pregnancies
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When The Baby Youre Expecting Turns Out To Be Twins
Multiple pregnancies involve certain discomforts and risks, but most turn out just fine.
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This guide was originally published on May 6, 2019 in NYT Parenting.
So youve just found out youre pregnant with multiples. Its O.K. to freak out. Its a lot to process.
Katie Ring panicked when she found out she was pregnant with twins, even though she was not at all surprised. Shes now mom to 2-year-old twins and a 5-year-old. She and her husband had decided to implant two embryos during I.V.F., and their doctors had advised them repeatedly to be prepared for twins. Still, it felt like too much, she said. I felt like I was going to lose my whole identity.
For this guide, I sifted through the science, consulted three obstetricians who specialize in multiples, interviewed a mom of twins, and compiled the information you need to know about being pregnant with multiples, without the scaremongering.
Two Babies Are Visible On An Ultrasound
Ultrasound uses sound waves to create an image of the womb. A transducer sends high-frequency sound waves into the body as the sound waves bounce off organs and structures, they produce electrical signals that are converted into images. This peek into the womb can clearly show the presence of two fetuses, or even two embryos early in the pregnancy.
In the past, ultrasound scans could potentially miss a twin pregnancy, for example, if two embryos were close together and one embryo was obscuring the other. But the clarity and precision of modern imaging, as well as more frequent use of ultrasound during pregnancy, makes it less likely that a twin would remain hidden.
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No : If You’re Pregnant With Twins You May Gain More Weight Than If You’re Carrying One Child
“With twins, mothers gain more weight as there are two babies, two placentas, and more amniotic fluid,” says Al-Khan. “You also need more calories for twin pregnancies.”
Still, there is not a well-established formula for weight gain during twin pregnancies, says Monga. “The average weight gain is 25 pounds for singleton pregnancy and 30-35 pounds for twins. We don’t want moms pregnant with twins to gain more than 40 or less than 15 pounds.”
The Institute of Medicine’s provisional guidelines for weight gain in women expecting twins say:
- Women of normal weight should aim to gain 37-54 pounds
- Overweight women should aim to gain 31-50 pounds
- Obese women should aim to gain 25-42 pounds
Exactly how much weight should you gain? The IOM recommends that you talk to your health care provider about that, because every pregnancy is unique.