Dichorionic Diamniotic twins are the ‘normal’ type of twin pregnancy. It means your twins both have their own amniotic sacs and placenta, so they’re only sharing your womb, nothing else.
As well as being by far the most common type of twin pregnancy, it’s also the best case scenario, with the least amount of complications and the best chance of both of your twins being born completely healthy without any intervention from your doctor or hospital.
Di di twins can be fraternal, (or non identical,) or identical, but are more likely to be fraternal.
What Does This Mean for You and Your Twins?
As any mom who might be expecting twins knows, twin pregnancies are hard! Or at least, much harder than single births. Bear in mind that we’re designed to only carry one baby at a time, and it’s actually pretty miraculous how adaptable we are.
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But twin pregnancies still put hugely increased strain on both the mother and the twins growing inside of her.
For the mother, her uterus is going to get bigger much faster than with a singleton pregnancy. You can expect to be the size of a woman at full term with just one baby at the start of your third trimester!
Because you’re supplying blood to two babies instead of one, your heart has to work that much harder, and you can expect to be pumping the same amount of blood as a full term single pregnancy at around the 25th week!
You’re also at a higher risk of all the lovely things that pregnant women face already, like pre-eclampsia, as well as likely premature birth and your babies having lower birth weights. It’s a fun time all round.
Thankfully, a di di twin pregnancy has the least chance of major problems amongst twin pregnancies, with the smallest list of major complications.
What Are the Complications of Di Di Twins
Whilst having twins is a fantastic event, there are several complications that can occur from carrying more than one child at a time.
- The first, and probably biggest complication that’s the most likely to happen is premature birth. Almost 2/3rds of twins are born premature, with lower birth weights than single babies. Whilst being born a little premature won’t affect the health of your babies, the earlier they are born the higher the risk, with very early babies even needing help breathing.
- Anemia. Because of the increased demand for blood of carrying two babies, the chance of anemia in pregnancy is more than doubled.
- Gestational hypertension. Again, the chance of this is almost doubled. The increased blood pressure also puts women carrying twins at a higher chance of pre-eclampsia, which can lead to serious problems if it isn’t treated.
- Birth defects. Multiple births like twins are around twice as likely to suffer from birth defects than single pregnancies.
- Miscarriage. The chance of miscarriage is higher than with single pregnancies, with the possibility of losing one or both twins.
- Gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is more likely when you’re having twins, especially if you already had a BMI of more than 30 when you fell pregnant.
- Obstetric cholestasis. This is a pretty uncommon condition that affects very few pregnant women. It causes intense itching with no other symptoms, and it’s thought to be caused by high concentrations of pregnancy hormones. As you’re going to be producing more of these (again, twins…) you’re more likely to suffer from this.
Will Having Di Di Twins Affect Giving Birth?
The favored dichorionic diamniotic twins delivery method is caesarian, because there are more complications that can occur with a twin birth. It’s also unlikely that you’ll be recommended a home birth, if that’s an option that you were hoping for.
It’s also normal for there to be more doctors and nurses around you as you’re giving birth to your twins, because of the increased chance of complications.
Your labor is generally going to be treated the same, but your twins are going to be more heavily monitored, normally with an electronic sensor that will be placed on the outside of your bump.
As for the birth itself, if you’re lucky enough to deliver normally, then it’s going to be pretty much identical to delivering a single baby, except twice! The only difference is that once your first child is born, the position of your second child will be checked either manually or with a scan.
If the second baby is in the correct position, you might just give birth completely naturally. If not, you’ll probably be given hormones to induce a second birth.
There’s a whole list of complications that can cause your doctor to recommend a caesarian birth. Don’t worry if this is the case. Like I said, over half of twin births are delivered by caesarian, so it’s completely normal. Just relax, trust that your babies are going to be fine and let the doctors do what they do.
What Can You Do for Your Di Di Twins?
The best thing to do is appreciate that you’re lucky enough to be giving birth to twins!
All of that aside, having di di twins is much the same as a single pregnancy, except you have two! So just follow all of the normal good practices.
Make sure you’re getting enough rest and eating well, taking multivitamins is good, and don’t overexert or overstress yourself. Finally, make sure to follow any advice your medical practitioners give you. After all, they have your best interests in mind!
How was your twin pregnancy? Or maybe you’re currently pregnant with twins, or trying and hoping you’ll be lucky enough to conceive twins! If you’ve got any twin stories or advice for moms to be, we’d love to hear it, so share in the comments below!