10 twin pregnancy symptoms to look out for

Posted on June 12th, 2018

Many women suspect that they may be carrying more than one baby, but how do you know for sure? Look out for these 10 twin pregnancy symptoms.

10 twin pregnancy symptoms to look out for

Timmy and Tommy Jones

Many women wonder if they could be expecting twins in the earlier stage of their pregnancy. Although it differs from woman to woman, these 10 twin pregnancy symptoms could indicate that you’re having more than one baby.

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1. Larger, faster weight gain

You may gain up to 5kg in the first trimester due to increased blood volume and uterine size. By the end of the second trimester, most moms-to-be of twins have gained between 7kg and 12kg – whereas moms expecting one baby usually only gain between 5kg and 10kg.

ALSO SEE: Here’s how much weight you should be gaining during pregnancy

2. A large-for-date uterus

If your uterus seems to be growing more rapidly than expected for your due date, a multiple pregnancy may be suspected. Other possible causes of a larger uterus for your stage of pregnancy include a miscalculated due date, an excessive amount of amniotic fluid, or the presence of uterine fibroids.

3. Looking bigger earlier

Increased uterus size can be a strong indicator of multiple pregnancies. However, most women measure larger and show earlier with subsequent pregnancies, so don’t be alarmed if you can’t fit into your jeans after six weeks of pregnancy with your second child, even if you didn’t wear maternity clothes until 20 weeks with your first baby.

ALSO SEE: 10 ways your second pregnancy is different to your first

4. Severe morning sickness

More than 50% of moms expecting multiples have morning sickness that tends to be more severe than for a singleton pregnancy.

5. Foetal movement early in the pregnancy

There is considerable disagreement among medical professionals as to whether a woman carrying twins is more likely to feel movement earlier. But, many moms claim that those early flutters and flips were their first clue that they might be having more than one baby.

6. Your doctor hears two or more heartbeats as early as 10 to 12 weeks

Depending on the position of the babies, a practitioner may be able to hear two or more separate heartbeats. However, since the heartbeat of a single foetus may be heard at several locations, a diagnosis of multiple pregnancy is only made when the heartbeat rates are different.

7. Abnormally high results from an AFP test

For many moms-to-be who don’t experience any unusual symptoms, high results in an AFP test is the first sign that there may be multiples. The AFP test measures a protein secreted by the foetal liver. More than one baby increases the amount of this protein in the mother’s blood, and will produce a high result. However, a high result can also suggest abnormalities with a single baby, so your doctor will usually schedule an ultrasound to investigate further.

8. Extreme fatigue

Nurturing one baby already drains your energy, but carrying two, three or more can be even more exhausting. If you’ve never had a baby before, you might be surprised by your lack of energy, but not realise it’s out of the ordinary. If you have had previous pregnancies, you might attribute the tiredness to being older or maintaining the responsibilities of family and work. However, fatigue is probably the most common complaint of moms-to-be of multiples.

ALSO SEE: 12 tips to help you beat pregnancy fatigue

9. Water retention

Moms-to-be often retain more water in a twin pregnancy than during a singleton pregnancy.

10. Predisposition to having twins

There are several factors that make a woman more likely to have twins, including twins in the mother’s family, advanced age, the use of fertility drugs to stimulate ovulation and invitro fertilisation.

ALSO SEE: Are multiple births on the increase? We investigate