When 1 + 1 = 4 or 5 or 6!

November 4, 2008

Wow, what a surprise. You knew you were pregnant, but you didn't know you had more than one baby in there. Suddenly all of the planning for the new addition takes on an entirely new dimension. How does one prepare for two or more babies at one time? You only have one decision - you have to be ready, regardless.

What Are Some of the Factors in Multiple Births?

Several different factors are contributors to multiple pregnancies. If a woman has a history of multiple births on her side of the family, then there's a good chance she'll have one as well. Women of African descent are more likely to have multiple births, with a rate of 45 out of 1,000 births in Africa being multiples. And here's one for you: women over the age of 35 have a higher percentage of identical twins than do those under that age, which is why there is a larger number of twin and multiple births in women who wait longer to have babies. A woman who has had more than one previous pregnancy, especially if it was a multiple pregnancy, can become pregnant with multiples.

IVF and ART Are Contributors

Of course, twins and super twins (as multiples of more than two are called) are often born to women who have had IVF or ART - another reason for the higher number of multiple births these days. Fertility specialists will often recommend that prospective parents undergo counseling on the possibilities and risks associated with multiple births.

There are certain things that are important in all pregnancies to ensure good health for both mother and baby such as proper diet, enough rest and regular trips to the doctor. With a multiple pregnancy, all of these things are equally important with the addition of more medical appointments with the obstetrician/gynecologist, because intensive prenatal care is of the utmost importance in a multiple pregnancy.

Find Professionals Experienced in This Field: Multiple Babies

You will want to find a doctor who is experienced in the area of multiple births, especially since this type of birth is considered high risk. The need for very specialized care is critical to the health and wellbeing of you and your babies. If you don't know of anyone who specializes in this field, ask your doctor for the name of a facility that specializes in this area. By partaking in a pre-term birth prevention program at your hospital you can help to ensure that you have immediate access to the appropriate assistance, such as NICU, should you go into early labor or if one of your babies has a problem.

Going through and preparing for a multiple birth gives life a whole new meaning. A baby is a blessing. More than one is multiple blessing for you and your family. Be sure to develop the necessary support system around yourself during your pregnancy to ensure a healthy pregnancy and a safe birth for you and your babies.

 

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