How to Prepare When Expecting Twins

How to Prepare When Expecting Twins

It was the ultimate what-if, wasn’t it? How on Earth? Yet here you are, expecting twins! The whirlwind of emotions that you experienced, from shock and excitement to anxiety, is probably an accurate insight into your future.

We all know that parenting is an endeavor that requires a lot of preparation and planning in order to establish a newborn twins routine. But you’re starting at a great point—researching everything you might need so everything goes as smoothly as possible. 

We’ll do our best to help you prepare for how to take care of twin babies! First off, however, congratulations! You’re bringing two little worlds into our own. That’s incredible. 

Getting Hospital Ready

Sometimes our babies like to surprise us and show up at an unexpected time. Sometimes, they have minds of their own. And nearly 50% of moms expecting multiples are on bed rest in some form at around thirty weeks. Moreover, instead of the forty weeks (typical of a single pregnancy), most moms expecting twins will go into labor around 36-37 weeks. 

Be sure to know and recognize the signs of preterm labor:

  • Five or more contractions within an hour
  • Dull backache below the waistline
  • Lower abdomen cramps (similar to menstrual) 
  • Change or increase in vaginal discharge
  • Pelvic pressure 
  • Watery fluid leaking from your vagina
  • Abdominal cramps that may or may not be accompanied by diarrhea

So we highly recommend that you’re as prepared as possible around the thirty-week mark. Here’s a to-do list to keep you on track:

  • Prep your hospital bag. 
  • Take maternity photos.
  • Have your baby shower (congrats again!) 
  • Furnish the nursery.
  • Hoard diapers (however much you think is enough, double that amount).

Accomplishing these tasks in advance will take a load of stress off, in case your babies do decide to make an early entrance. 

Don’t Double Down on Everything

Ignore your first reflex to purchase two of everything. Most things like rocking chairs and toys can and will be shared between the twins. It will actually be more useful to get a variety so that your twins can rotate.

Think of equipment that specifically accommodates twins, like a quality double-frame stroller that will help make everything a walk in the park. 

Other helpful items that you might consider purchasing are:

  • Swing
  • Changing table
  • Twin baby carrier
  • Double feeding pillow
  • Backpacks
  • Bouncer
  • Bathtub
  • Wardrobe
  • Baby monitor

Although, there are some items that you will need to double-up on. Buying two car seats, cribs, bibs, bedding, high chairs, and feeding supplies is, unfortunately, unavoidable.

Preparing Your Body 

You don’t need anyone to tell you that your health is essential to your children’s health. Right now, you should be doing your best to enjoy the life you have before working double time. Do everything in your power to mitigate stress and improve your overall well-being, as this will ensure the healthiest pregnancy!  

With one more baby than you might have anticipated, you will probably be spending additional hours going to doctor appointments. Knowing the risks and potential obstacles you might face can, therefore, help you more adequately take care of yourself.

Be sure to consult with your doctor to create the best fitness and health plan moving forward! Every person is different, so you’ll want to ensure you’re heading into this new era with your body in mind. 

The Potential Obstacles

Not every pregnancy is the same, but you should be on the lookout for some prevalent issues:

  • Weight gain — As expected, you will probably gain more weight than a single-child-carrying mother. While you will need to be eating enough for three now, it isn’t a 100% free pass. The exact weight gain that is considered healthy and normal depends on the individual. Ask your doctor to help you find a good range you can aim to stay within. 

  • Morning sickness — Higher levels of hormones may contribute to higher incidences of nausea and vomiting. Thankfully, this will only occur in the first trimester. A majority of expectant mothers no longer feel morning sickness after 12-14 weeks. 

  • You should, of course, consult your obstetrician to discover what you need. By being informed, you can be aware of what signs you should be looking for and what behaviors to focus on to help ensure a healthy pregnancy!

    Anticipating Change

    Pregnancy is more than just physical changes. Mental health is equally as imperative to maintain during this momentous period in your life. Taking the time to address your needs and discussing with others can help you adjust to life with two new arrivals.

    Support Networks

    As hard as anyone might try, it’s impossible to be the perfect parent. So, it can be nerve-wracking not to know what’s in store for you. An excellent source of comfort is fellow parents of multiples who have “been there and done that.” 

    Finding and joining local groups for parents of multiples can become a lifesaver. With a few experienced parents, you can have a wealth of information, advice, and emotional support at your fingertips to bolster you through the uncertainty and hardships. They know the ins and outs of caring for newborn twins, so they can guide you through the process! 

    Sit Downs with the Siblings

    While you are experiencing the brunt of the responsibility, the introduction of twins also changes the lives of those around you. Beyond you and a possible partner, if your twins have older siblings, you should also prepare them for the changes that are to come.  

    Outside Assistance

    There is absolutely no shame in needing help. Whether you simply cannot manage without additional assistance or would like an occasional helping hand, making arrangements before they’re needed can help future, stressed you.

    Double the Trouble

    It’s no shock that two babies will be a costly adventure. Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed and implement these tips for raising twins in order to stay on top of your finances:

  • Don your chef’s apron — Save some time and money by making your own baby food when you can. Freeze portions so your food can last a while. Also, this will allow you to switch up recipes and introduce new foods to your babies.

  • Ready, set, save — Not a groundbreaking tip, but starting to set aside money for unexpected costs is a worthy and necessary safety net. 

  • Evaluate your insurance coverage — You want to be sure you have sufficient coverage for your growing family. And a new baby can be a qualifying life event, which might enable you to make changes to your policy. Also, don’t be afraid to ask your human resources department if there are any benefits that could help you out.

  • Bulk up — Shopping wholesale is a smart move. You can save on the large amounts of diapers, baby wipes, and formula you’re definitely going to need. You could also get cheaper over-the-counter and prescription medicine at the wholesale club’s pharmacy.

  • No shame in the discount game — If you’re willing to invest a few minutes in calling companies, some will offer discounts to parents of multiples. This applies to a few baby food and diaper companies if you’re willing to call their 1-800 number. Moreover, daycares, play centers, and the likes of may consider a discount for dual enrollment. Doesn’t hurt to try!

  • Get on Track

    As soon as your twins decide they’re ready to meet you face to face, time will fly by in a blink. A major tip is to get accustomed to scheduling. If you aim to keep the two running on the same schedule, you will be able to create a healthy sleep cycle and an organized routine sooner. 

    Factor in who might be helping you so that you have allotted time for a well-deserved break. Organization is likely to be a your best friend! 

    Just Breathe!

    This How to Take Care of Twin Babies guide is intended to help prevent you from grasping at straws in a panic later. To that end, as this was meant to be an aid, your family, friends, and doctor are right there with you.  

    You can do this! Don’t forget to slowly inhale and exhale when you need to catch a breath. And, regardless of all the details, enjoy this beautiful cause for celebration! While there will be double the number of tears and diapers, there will also be double the laughter, smiles, and memories. 

    For more information, check out our newborn twins checklist.