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Twins and Multiples

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Twins and multiples, a surprise for many expecting parents, bring double (or even triple) the love and excitement. While a single pregnancy is miraculous, there’s something truly special about expecting multiples. Here’s a look at the different types of twins and multiples, how they develop, and some things to consider if you’re expecting more than one little bundle of joy.

Types of Twins and Multiples

  • Identical twins: These twins develop from a single fertilized egg that splits into two embryos. Identical twins share all their genes, resulting in the same sex, physical appearance, and often, similar personalities.
  • Fraternal twins: Fraternal twins develop from two separate eggs fertilized by two different sperm. Fraternal twins can be of the same sex (like siblings) or different sexes, and they share about 50% of their genes.

Triplets and higher-order multiples can be identical, fraternal, or a combination of both. For instance, triplets could be identical triplets (from one fertilized egg splitting into three), fraternal triplets (from three separate eggs fertilized by three sperm), or a combination of identical and fraternal twins.

How Twins and Multiples Develop

  • The fertilized egg splits within the first few days after conception. Depending on when the split occurs, identical twins can share the same placenta and amniotic sac (monoamniotic), share a placenta but have separate amniotic sacs (monochorionic diamniotic), or have separate placentas and amniotic sacs (dichorionic diamniotic).
  • Two separate eggs are released from the ovary and fertilized by two different sperm. Each fertilized egg implants in the uterus and develops separately, with its own placenta and amniotic sac.

Considerations for a Twin or Multiple Pregnancy

A multiple pregnancy can be a thrilling surprise, but it also comes with some additional considerations:

  • Prenatal care: You might require more frequent prenatal checkups and ultrasounds to monitor the health of both babies.
  • Increased risk of complications: Multiple pregnancies are more likely to experience certain complications like premature birth, gestational diabetes, and preeclampsia. Your doctor will monitor you closely and manage any potential risks.
  • Delivery: Depending on the type of twins and their position in the womb, your doctor will determine the safest delivery method, which could be vaginal or cesarean.
  • Preparation for multiples: Stock up on double (or triple!) diapers, clothes, and feeding supplies. You might also consider additional support like a nanny or help from family and friends.

Support for Parents of Twins and Multiples

Expecting twins or multiples can be overwhelming, but there’s a wealth of support available. Joining a local twins club or online forum can connect you with other parents facing similar experiences and provide valuable advice and resources.

Emirates Hospitals is committed to providing comprehensive prenatal care for mothers expecting twins and multiples. Our experienced team will guide you through every step of your pregnancy, address your concerns, and ensure the best possible outcome for you and your precious babies.

Last update date: 03-07-2024

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