You have to rely a lot on Mother Nature when it comes to your baby's gender and genetics, however, If you are desperate for twins to add to your brood, then there are some things you can do.
How to get pregnant with twins
Time to dig out the family tree and have a think about your diet – these factors both increase your likelihood of having twins or multiples…
- Your family history
- Your lifestyle
- Number of children you have
- Maternal age
- Where you’re from
- Fertility treatment
Tips to boost your chances of falling pregnant with twins
1) Your family history
‘It’s all about the woman because you’re the one producing the eggs, so if you or your mum are twins, or perhaps your sister has multiple babies, then you’ll be more likely to conceive more than one,’ says David.
2) Your lifestyle
Women who have a low-fat diet, especially vegans and vegetarians, are less likely to have multiples than someone who goes for the whole milk and tucks into steak every Friday.
‘The possible causes of this are subtle hormonal changes in people with these different diets, as well as perhaps someone with a higher fat diet having a higher body mass index (BMI) – that’s a measure for checking how healthy your weight is in relation to your height,’ says David.
That said, even if you are a veggie, there's plenty of fertility superfoods to start adding to your diet if you are trying to conceive - whether that's one baby or two!
3) Coming off the pill
The more children you’ve had, the more likely at some stage you’ll conceive multiples
You’re simply giving yourself more opportunities to strike lucky. ‘There’s also the possibility that if you’ve always become pregnant easily in the past, you’re basically a good ovulator, so to speak’ says David.
5) Where you’re from
‘There are no real theories I’m aware of that would account for this, but interestingly if you’re Nigerian and living in another country, you’re less likely to conceive multiples than if you’re based in Nigeria – so perhaps it’s to do with diet or climate,’ says David.
Read next: 8 fabulous foods to boost his sperm count
6) Maternal age
‘This is about the way your ovaries work and how their function changes with age, so you may release more than one egg each month,’ says David.
Fertility expert Emma Cannon adds 'There is some idea that the older you are the more likely you are to conceive twins, because apparently as you reach the end of your fertile life the body panics a bit and often releases more than one egg, so that’s one way – it’s a bit risky though!'
7) Fertility treatment
‘When IVF started to get really effective in the US during the 1970s and 1980s, twin rates pretty much doubled,’ says David. ‘It’s down to your body being given drugs to stimulate it to ovulate and produce eggs.’
How common are twins?
Many fertility experts believe twins are more common than we are aware of, it is reasonably common for more than one embryo to be implanted, yet in a lot of cases, only one twin survives.
Before we talk about increasing your chances of adding two to your brood, it's important to understand how twins are made. You'll probably know that there are two types of twins: identical and non-identical.
Identical twins: Identical, or monozygotic twins are made when one egg is fertilised by one sperm, which divides into two separate embryos. They'll not only look identical but share the same genetic structures and the same placenta.
Non-identical twins: Non-identical or dizygotic twins are made when two separate eggs are fertilised by two separate sperm. These twins will have their own genetic composition and will have their own placentas. This type of twin is more common.
‘Identical twins, which make up around a third of twin pregnancies, come from one egg and are basically a fluke of nature – there’s no known common factor in those,’ says David Davies, consultant obstetrician at Portsmouth’s Queen Alexandra Hospital. ‘But with non-identical twins or triplets, which come from different eggs, there are several shared influences.’
From what you eat to the size of your family, get clued up on the likelihood that you’re going to need a bigger buggy.
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