The idea of having twins is very fascinating for most women. Having twins is one of the most amazing things that a woman could achieve. Though this comes rarely and may be genetically embedded in some families, it is always important to be well aware of the signs of twins in early pregnancy. This not only helps you plan ahead but also makes it easier to adjust accordingly during the next nine months of providing for two babies.
Common signs of twins in early pregnancy
- Early weight gain is one of the early signs of twin pregnancy. Twin pregnancy mothers often experience higher weight gain than single pregnancy mothers. This is usually about five more or less pounds. The extra weight gain is mostly due to the increased blood volume and the growing uterus for two babies.
- Excessive morning sickness or nausea is one of the common signs of twins in early pregnancy. Though there is no exact medical reason for this, this is believed to be caused by the increasing hormone levels which become higher with two babies. This is the highest complaint from pregnant women regardless of the type of pregnancy and is normal.
- Fetal movement in early pregnancy is also a sign of twins. Fetal movement mostly occurs at about 18 to 22 weeks of pregnancy in a normal single pregnancy. It is arguable that twin mothers experience movement earlier than single pregnancy mothers.
- Measuring large for gestational age is also a key sign of twin pregnancy. In first pregnancies though, this may not prove to be always correct. Second pregnancies are always easier to tell between single and twin pregnancies.
- Elevated levels of the pregnancy hormone hCG or human chorionic gonadotropin above normal may be signs of twins in early pregnancy. Carrying twins increases the production of this hormone at a much rapid rate than in singletons.
- Extreme fatigue may also be experienced during the early stages of pregnancy indicating the probability of having twins. Sleepiness, exhaustion and lethargy are very common among twin mothers due to the body’s overworking nature to cater for two babies.
Confirming a multiple pregnancy
There are various ways that you can use to confirm a multiple pregnancy. The most commonly used and effective method is through ultrasound confirmation. This method uses ultrasound images to show actual images of the fetus in the womb. Ultrasound will indicate whether there is more than one fetus. Even after experiencing other symptoms of carrying a multiple pregnancy, the only assurance you can get is by having ultrasound scan to confirm the presence of twins.
This is the most definite confirmation of pregnancy and is mostly done at your first appointment with your doctor.
Another test usually carried out is the heartbeat count which tries to detect the presence of more than one heartbeat. This test is at times done separately but is available during the ultrasound test. A twin pregnancy requires more attention and once you suspect any signs of twins in early pregnancy, it is very important to consult your health care professional.