Tips for Pregnancy with Multiples
Posted on March 06 2018
Expecting Multiples? Freaking out?
Are you carrying more than one baby in your little belly? Does this make your stomach turn? Are you still convinced that it’s all just a dream? If you’re expecting twins or multiples but don’t know what to expect, you’re not alone. There are millions of women who have been in your shoes and are now well-accustomed to their lives as a multi-tasking mom to multiple children.
You and your partner are probably now freaking out with concerns like “Is our house big enough?” or “How will we raise them?” Yes, the reality is that carrying more than one child can be a jarring experience that you'll need to be prepared for. From managing your weight gain and eating for two or three, to caring for more than just one baby, here's what you need to know to sail through your pregnancy.
What causes a multiple pregnancy?
In the U.S. alone, about three in every 100 pregnant women give birth to twins or triplets, and these pregnancies are on the rise. There are multiple causes for a multiple pregnancy, including:
- Older age: you're more likely to have more than one baby at a time if you're age 35 or older. There are many women today who delay being pregnant until later in life, causing having twins or multiples as a result.
- Heredity: if anyone on your mom's side of the family has had fraternal twins, your chances of a multiple pregnancy are higher.
- High parity: having fraternal twins before increases your chances of having multiples.
- County of origin: women of African descent are more likely to have twins than any other race. in Nigeria, twins make up one in every 20 or 30 pregnancies!
- Fertility treatment: fertility treatments such as IVF can boost your likelihood of having more than one child. When IVF started to get really effective in the US during the 1970s and 1980s, twin rates doubled.
Tips for pregnancy with multiples
Although the idea of having more than one baby can be frightening, there are some simple things you can do to keep you and your babies healthy.
Eating for two or more. When you’re expecting one child, you need about 300 calories more a day in order to grow a healthy baby. When expecting twins or multiples, that caloric recommendation goes up to 3,500 calories a day. In your later weeks of pregnancy, you’ll experience a loss of appetite since your abdomen will be full of babies. Even then, take protein-rich foods to prevent preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and preterm labor. Protein shakes or fruit smoothies can also help. Don’t forget to include lots of fruits and veggies in your diet as developing babies need their micronutrients.
Drinking for two or more. In order to avoid dehydration, drink as much liquids as you can. Try drinking eight glasses of water each day and drink between meals rather than with them. If you’re making constant trips to the bathroom, then you’re doing a great job at staying hydrated.
Exercising. If your doctor gives you the green light to exercise, do milder exercises that won’t hurt your pregnancy. Some gentle options include yoga, swimming, light weight training, biking, and stretching.
Avoiding. Avoid using any medicines, vitamins, or herbs unless your doctor says it's okay. It’s also best to avoid caffeine and drink more water than anything else. Don't smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs.
Understanding risk. Moms who’re expecting multiples need to be aware of having greater chances of preterm labor, preeclampsia, and gestational diabetes. The best thing to do is to talk to your doctor who will answer any questions or concerns you may have.
Getting some rest. Being pregnant with one baby is tiring, but being pregnant with multiples is even more so. For this reason, it’s recommended you implement a rest period every day. Take a few minutes of laying down and resting throughout the day. Let this become a habit and every time you come home from work or doing groceries, lay in bed for 20-30 minutes. It’s essential this becomes part of your day.
Building up your support system. Having a support system that you can always count on is a blessing for every parent. If people offer to help, make sure you accept their help. Let them help with groceries, laundry, cleaning, or cooking.
Maternity Belts. Pregnancy belts are highly recommended by medical professionals because it provides both abdominal and lower back support. This helps relieve extra spinal pressure during pregnancy meaning less discomfort and fewer chances of injury. In terms of being pregnant with multiples, the Gabrialla strong support maternity belt is recommended. It provides the strongest support you can have during a pregnancy, especially when carrying multiples!