Having twins have always fascinated people especially in Nigeria. Some just love the idea of having two children who look alike and dress alike while others desire twins because of other reasons like age e.g a woman who married in her late 30’s to rather want twins or multiple births than a single baby..
There are two different types of twins:
- Identical: Identical twins occur when one egg is fertilized by one sperm. The egg then divides into two separate embryos. Identical twins might share a placenta and an amniotic sac, or they might share a placenta and each have separate amniotic sacs. Genetically, the two babies are identical.
- Non-identical: Non-identical, or fraternal, twins occur when two separate eggs are fertilized by two separate sperm. Non-identical twins have their own placenta and their own unique genetic composition.
Whatever your reason, bear in mind that some factors may increase your chances of twin births and here are some of them.
Studies have shown that the older a woman is, the higher her chances of having twins.
Women who are over age 30 — especially women in their late 30s — have a greater chance of having twins. That’s because they’re more likely to release more than one egg during ovulation than younger women.
By releasing more than one egg, a woman increases her chances that sperm will fertilize more than one resulting in twin conception.
Chances are increased if a woman is over the age of 35 and has already had one baby.
If both you and your partner have a history of multiples in the family, your chances of conceiving twins are higher. This is especially true for women who have fraternal twins in their family. That’s because they’re more likely to have inherited the gene that makes them release more than one egg at a time. women who are fraternal twins themselves have a 1 in 60 chance of having their own twins. Men who are fraternal twins have a 1 in 125 chance of fathering twins.
If you are a twin yourself, your chances are higher. Mothers who are twins are more likely to have twin babies.
Some researchers claim that people with a higher body mass index (BMI) have higher chances of carrying twins. People with a BMI greater than 30 before conception are more likely to give birth to non-identical twins. Health care providers however don’t recommend gaining weight in order to have twins.
Studies have also shown that for people who are 5 feet 4.5 inches (164 centimeters) or taller, the relative odds of having twins is 1.5–2 times higher than for those under 5 feet 1 inch (155 cm).
Ethnicity is another factor that can influence the chances of carrying two babies. African or Black people have a distinctly higher rate of twin pregnancies.
Eat more yams/sweet potatoes. It is a fact that more women conceive with twins who live in areas e.g Igbo-Ara in Oyo State where yams are a major component of their diet. It seems that a naturally occurring chemical component of the yams helps to support ovarian function.
Although this hasn’t been totally proven, some studies say women who conceive while breastfeeding are more likely to conceive twins than women who are not. Though some women do not resume regular ovulation and menstrual cycles for the entire time they are breastfeeding; this is very individual.
However, it is possible to get pregnant when breastfeeding—and with twins!
7. Take folic acid
Small studies also link taking folic acid prior to conceiving to increasing the chance of conceiving twins. Folic acid is a supplement recommended by doctors for women trying to become or already are pregnant. If you are trying to get pregnant, taking folic acid will help protect your baby’s brain development.
8. Fertility Treatment and drugs
Fertility treatments are hormone treatments that work to increase the number of eggs released during ovulation. With more eggs being released, women increase their chances of conception as well as chances of having twins. Just like when a woman is older and there is an increased likelihood of two eggs being released, those taking fertilization drugs increase their chances of sperm fertilizing two released eggs.
Clomiphene and gonadotropins are commonly used fertility drugs that can increase your chances of having twins.
Oral medications, such as clomiphene, boost the body’s ovulation hormones. Gonadotropins are injections that increase amounts of two ovulating hormones, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). Both treatment types tell the brain to produce more eggs, thus improving the opportunities to fertilize multiple eggs.
9.In vitro fertilization (IVF)
In vitro fertilization (IVF) takes a woman’s unfertilized eggs and a man’s sperm and then fertilizes the eggs. This is known as assisted reproductive technology (ART). Doctors will fertilize more than one egg to then implant it into a woman. They are left to incubate before being put back into the woman’s uterus as an embryo.
Through a medical procedure, doctors place the embryo in the woman’s uterus where it will hopefully implant and grow. To increase the odds that an embryo will take hold in the uterus, more than one may be put in during IVF. This raises the likelihood of having twins.