Undergoing fertility treatment with our doctors and Team Miracle at the Cyprus IVF Centre is probably something which you have thought about, and planned, for a while. And whilst you know logically that having a multiple pregnancy is something which is far more likely to happen after IVF, it can still be a shock when your scan shows not one just embryo, but two.
Here at the Cyprus IVF Centre we increase your chances of a successful pregnancy by routinely returning between two and four embryos to the uterus. So we have a relatively high (approximately 20%) incidence of twins! Team Miracle will always be on hand to answer any specific questions that you may have, but we have prepared the following guide to get you started.
First of all, twin shock, what is it ?
It’s exactly as it sounds. Finding out that you are having a multiple pregnancy can be a shock and this is completely understandable. Suddenly, the dynamics have shifted and the idea that you had in your mind may not match the reality now. Having two newborns can mean anything for couples, from needing a bigger house or car to re-thinking logistics and education plans.
It’s important to remember that your situation is individual to you and accept how you feel about it, even if this is uncertain or scary at the beginning. Twin shock is a normal response and it won’t last forever!
The reality of having a multiple birth
So what does it really mean? Team Miracle have been lucky enough to witness many families go through a multiple pregnancy, and whilst it does remain an individual experience, there are some things which are true across the board.
- The obvious one. Having more than one baby at a time gives you the opportunity to complete your family, even if you envisaged having lots of children. Many couples with an older child will choose to stop after having twins, and if twins come along first then often having just one more baby will complete your family.
- Your twins have each other as instant siblings. Research shows that having one or more siblings can bring an extra benefit to a child’s life. If you have a multiple pregnancy – you’ve done this already.
- Twins have a built-in playmate.
- Once you have had your IVF treatment in Cyprus, you will return home for the pregnancy. In the UK, having a twin pregnancy can mean extra scans, sometimes up to once every two weeks. How many scans you have will depend on lots of variable factors, such as the twin growth rate, whether they share a placenta or whether there is twin to twin transfusion syndrome.
- Twins often sleep better, and settle more easily, than singletons. Used to being crammed up together in their mother’s uterus, by placing them in the same cot, or Moses basket, this can help them to settle themselves. The familiar feeling can make all the difference in the early days, meaning more peace for you.
- Twins are usually born earlier. Whether it’s a spontaneous birth or a planned one, multiple pregnancies are very often not as long as singleton pregnancies. So if the latter stages of your pregnancy happen to be during the long, hot summer, this can be a relief!
Tips and tricks to help you prepare for your twin birth
- It sounds obvious, but get as much rest as you possibly can. Obviously this isn’t practical for everyone, but don’t be afraid to ask for help during your pregnancy.
- Employ a cleaner if you can. Even just a couple of hours a week can take something off your mind and leave you to concentrate on the things that relax you.
- Exercise is important, however please make sure it’s gentle. It will keep your body supple for the birth. So a relaxing walk, or gentle swim, can give a world of benefits to your pregnant body.
- If you have older children, try and secure childcare for them at least a couple of times a week. A multiple pregnancy can be tough and having some respite to look forward to, however brief, will help you to stay relaxed in mind and body.
- Take advantage of advice from those that know best! TAMBA (twin and multiple birth association) run free, or low-cost, courses in the UK to help parents of multiples. Attending these can help to boost your confidence in the months before the birth.
- Prepare, prepare, prepare. Make sure that you have a decent stock of all the baby paraphernalia that you’ll need. Nappies, bottles, milk, muslin cloths and a breast pump amongst other things, can all be obtained prior to the birth. Batch cook and freeze meals that you can just whip out of the freezer when you need them.
The most important thing?
From the moment you arrive at the Cyprus IVF Centre to be treated by our doctors and Team Miracle, you are working towards creating two new little lives. You will get double the cuddles and your twins will have a playmate for life. Having twins is a very special bond, and one that you will treasure forever.