Twin Pregnancy and Parenting Articles

Twin Statistics

In the U.K around 33% of twins are identical

UK Twin Statistics

 

Twin Statistics ~ How many twins are identical and how many are non-identical?

In the UK it is thought that around 66% of twins are non-identical and 33% of twins are identical.

Identical Twins or Non-identical twins? Dizygotic or Monozygotic? What does it all mean?

When you find that you are pregnant with twins suddenly you discover that it’s not quite as simple as just having two babies. People start throwing jargon at you often with baffling results! Here is a quick guide to the different types of twins and a breakdown of some of the most commonly used twin jargon.

Mono? Di? What’s this all about?

In simple terms  ‘mono’ means one, so if you see any information starting with mono, it probably means from one where as ‘di’ means two and so if you see something with di in its name chances are it means from two. (This makes life easier as then you can apply this principle to the other twin jargon you come across, phew) We probably shouldn’t refer to twins as identical and non-identical as even identical twins have tiny differences, which often get more prominent as they get older. A more useful term for twins is monozygotic or dizygotic.

Dizygotic Twins

Those who are non-identical (or fraternal) are from two separate sperm and eggs (also called dizygotic twins) and are likely to look as similar as regular siblings. They may be the same sex or different sexes, may look similar or quite different. They might have different hair types, eye colours, hair colours, etc.

Monozygotic Twins

Identical (or monozygotic) twins however are formed from one sperm and egg which splits shortly after conception. They will be the same sex and probably look very similar to each other. Some people may struggle to tell them apart.

 

My same sex twins are not sharing a chorion or placenta does this mean they’re definitely non-identical?

If the split takes place very soon after conception the two embryos may implant at different places, so even if your same sex twins don’t share a placenta or chorion, this means your same sex twins could still be identical despite not sharing any membranes etc.

 

How can you tell if your twins are identical?

Usually you get told your twins are identical for sure if they are sharing an outer membrane (chorion) in the womb. If they have one chorion (outer membrane) they will be described as mono-chorionic. If they also share an amniotic sac they will be described as being mono-amniotic

If your twins are boy/girl twins they are definitely non-identical..

How can you tell? Go check in their nappies, do they look the same? No. Quite!

What does MC/DA or MC/MA mean?

You may have heard of twins being described as mono-chorionic/ diamniotic  (MC/DA) This means they have  one chorion or outer membrane but two amniotic sacs or mono-chorionic/monoamniotic (MC/MA) this means one chorion and one amniotic sac

You may like this article on determining zygosity

 

Managing morning sickness in twin pregnancy

Expecting twins and suffering from morning sickness

Pregnancy nausea and vomiting (more commonly known as ‘morning sickness’) is most common during the first trimester (the first 12 weeks of pregnancy) often peaking at around week 9. Some mums find that their morning sickness subsides after about week 13-15, others find that their morning sickness  continues all the way throughout the pregnancy. In some cases the pregnancy nausea and vomiting tails off by about week 15 but then comes back towards the end of the pregnancy. It is especially common during twin pregnancy as it is thought to be linked to HCG levels which tend to be higher if you are pregnant with twins. That said, not all mums pregnant with twins will suffer from morning sickness, so if you’ve just found out you’re pregnant with twins, don’t worry morning sickness might not affect you!

Despite it being called morning sickness, some people find that they are sick morning, noon and night. I’m mentioning this not to alarm you just to pre-warn you that this may happen so you don’t feel so scared if it does happen.

Feel sick? Have a snack!

If you feel sick during twin pregnancy eat a snack

Morning sickness is a very strange phenomena. Bizarrely it seems to be worse when you’re hungry or you have low blood sugar and the last thing most people fancy doing when they’re feeling very nauseous and possibly vomiting is to eat anything. However this is one of the best things to help it. If you feel yourself starting to feel nauseous have a snack and something to drink and see if it settles. Carbohydrate rich foods seem to be helpful, especially dry crackers, cereal bars, cereal, sandwiches and bananas. It is useful to keep snacks in your handbag and in your bedside table drawer.

Before you get up

eat toast before you get up

Have a banana or some toast (brought to you by your partner) before you get up. If your partner works shifts and isn’t available when you wake up, have a light snack from your bedside table drawer instead.

It’s not all doom and gloom though, there are things that seem to help a little bit.

These include:

  • Always having a carbohydrate based snack to hand (see above)
  • Never allowing yourself to be totally hungry
  • Drinking plenty of water, if you’re feeling very nauseous sipping cooled boiled water may help.
  • Avoiding caffeine, alcohol, greasy foods, spicy foods, and any trigger foods (for me it was garlic, I couldn’t bear the smell of garlic when I was pregnant!)
  • Ginger is good for morning sickness, you can get ginger and lemon tea, ginger biscuits, or eat ginger cake.
  • Some people find accupressure bands (for motion sickness) can help, but chat to your pharmacist about these before you use them.

What if you have severe morning sickness and can’t keep anything down?

If you find that you cannot keep anything down or are being sick multiple times a day you may have a condition known as hyperemisis gravidarum (extreme morning sickness). It is important that you get medical help, as you may need to go on a drip. You can read more about Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) by clicking here

Over to you..!

How long did you suffer from morning sickness? What worked for you? Or were you one of the lucky ones who was hardly sick during your twin pregnancy? Please leave a comment in the comments box below. Look forward to hearing from you soon 🙂

#twinpregnancy #twins #morningsickness #morningsicknesstwins #pregnancy

www.twinsonline.org.uk