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Although parents of twins, triplets, or more, celebrate the joy their little ones bring throughout the year, April is declared National Multiple Birth Awareness Month. The multiple birth rate has significantly increased since the 1980s and, with more mothers and parents dealing with this, Multiple Birth Awareness Month aims to educate mothers on how to raise multiple children and to celebrate the joy that these little bundles of happiness bring!
History of National Multiple Birth Awareness Month
Owing to the rise in multiple births over the last decades, a resolution was passed in 2011 to declare April as Multiple Birth Awareness Month in the state of Michigan.
The idea was initiated by Multiples of America (also known as the National Organization of Mothers of Twins Clubs), which is a community for parents of children of multiple births. It assists with the basic purpose of research, education, and support of multiple birth children and their families.
With the increase in multiple births, the risks associated for mothers and babies have also increased. Nationally, one out of every eight twins and one of every three triplets are born prematurely, while, in single births, this rate is comparatively lower, with fewer than two in every 100 births being premature. Also, death during infancy is four times more common for twins than single births.
Multiple Birth Awareness Month essentially aims to spread awareness about the issues related to multiple births — twin-to-twin transfusion syndromes, premature births, fetal issues, low birth weights, etc. The month also encourages parents of multiples or those who are expecting multiples to seek out the resources and support.
National Multiple Birth Awareness Month timeline
The Dionne quintuplets are born who are the first quintuplets known to survive their infancy.
Multiples of America is established.
IVF is introduced in the U.S., which increases the percentage of multiples manyfold.
April is declared as National Multiple Birth Awareness Month by the members of the legislative body.
National Multiple Birth Awareness Month FAQs
What are the different terms used for multiple babies?
The terms, depending on the number of children, are: twins, triplets, quadruplets, quintuplets, sextuplets, septuplets, and octuplets.
What is the largest number of multiple births recorded?
The world’s largest recorded multiple birth was nine babies in Sydney, Australia in 1971.
What causes multiple birth?
Multiple pregnancy usually happens when more than one egg is fertilized by a man’s sperm. But it also can happen when one egg is fertilized and then splits into two or more embryos that grow into two or more babies. Twins are called identical when one fertilized egg splits into two.
How to Observe National Multiple Birth Awareness Month
There’s no better way to observe Multiple Birth Awareness Month than acquainting yourself with the unique qualities, special challenges, and needs of multiple birth children while celebrating the joys they bring.
Plan an event
You can plan a community event and invite the public to attend to hear first-hand accounts of what it is like to be a child or parent of a multiple birth. In this way, you can learn about their experiences as well as create awareness among the masses.
Share on social media
Don’t forget to support Multiple Birth Awareness Month on social media by sharing resources and using the hashtag #MultipleBirthAwareness. You never know, the resources may help someone who had or is going to have a multiple birth connect with support groups.
Interesting Facts About Multiples In Different Cultures
Mayan culture saw twins as a blessing
The Mayans believed that twins were one soul that had fragmented.
Legend of twins in ancient Rome
In ancient Rome, the birth of twin boys was seen as a blessing, while twin girls were seen as an unlucky burden.
In Greek mythology twins represented the universe
In Greek mythology, twins were viewed as the representatives of the dualistic nature of the universe.
Medieval era believed adultery resulted in twins
Giving birth to twins was seen as evidence of adultery in the medieval era.
Twin gods in ancient Egypt
In ancient Egypt, they worshipped dualistic twins: Nut, the goddess of the sky, and Geb, the god of Earth.
Why Multiple Birth Awareness Month is Important
It raises awareness
Multiple Birth Awareness Month increases community awareness about the risks associated with multiple births and the challenges faced by multiple birth families.
It provides support
The month assists in providing support and resources to families of multiple birth children through education, research, and networking.
It celebrates joy
Multiple Birth Awareness Month is also a reminder that, while multiple births can be a challenge to handle, the joy that these little bundles of happiness bring makes it all worth it!
National Multiple Birth Awareness Month dates