Dreaming of having twins or multiples? Although you might have to rely a lot on Mother Nature when it comes to your baby's gender and genetics, there are things that you can do to increase your chances of having twins.
In this article:
Although it's more common to concieve twins if you've had IVF treatment, 1 in 250 pregnancies result in twins naturally. Here are some top tips and advice to increase your chances of trying to conceive twins, naturally.
How to get pregnant with twins:
Chances are this is just a case of odds – but research suggests the more children you’ve had, the more likely at some stage you’ll conceive multiples. Your chances of conceiving twins are also thought to be higher if you already have twins.
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.
How common are twins?
The NHS reported in 2016, around 12,000 sets of twins and about 190 sets of triplets or more were born in the UK. This means that about 1 in every 65 births in the UK today are twins, triplets or more.
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.
Identical vs fraternal (non-identical)
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, 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.
You can find out if your twins will be identical through a DNA test.
Non-identical or fraternal twins:
Non-identical or fraternal 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.
How do I know if I'm carrying twins?
Many couples expecting can find out if they are having twins through the dating ultrasound scan when you're 8 to 14 weeks pregnant, but the NHS says there are some other signs to look out for:
- If you seem bigger than you should be for your dates
- Twins run in your family
- You have had fertility treatment
More from Motherandbaby.co.uk: