So, you had your heart set on home birth only to find out you’re pregnant with twins? Now you’re left wondering A.) if it’s even possible, and B.) what type of risks you face. Whatever your concern, you’ve come to the right place momma. So, let’s get to it, can you have a home birth with twins?

The short answer is YES! About 0.64% of home birth mommas in the United States birth twins. However, as with anything, there are risks as well as benefits to take into consideration before making a decision this big.

Pros of home birth with twins

There are PLENTY of benefits to choosing a home birth over traditional hospital birth. Unfortunately, a lot of women aren’t aware of these awesome advantages because — let’s be honest, (although it is on the rise) home birth is not a very common thing.

Here’s a rundown on some of the pros you’ll be taking advantage of…

You get to deliver at home!! Can you say comfortable?

One of the best things about home birth is just that; giving birth in the comfort of your home around your friends and family, or no one at all except your birthing team. Your call.

Plan it to the T.

For every birth, no matter the setting, it’s important to plan, but planning for home birth is on a whole other level since you get to plan all the way up to labor and beyond.

That’s one of the many ways a birth plan comes in handy. You can write down everything you want to happen, that way, everyone involved is aware of your wishes and prepared for the big day.

(P.s If you aren’t sure where to start on your birth plan, check out this post that tells you everything you need to know about creating the ultimate birth plan for your home birth!)

Eat when you want

One agonizing aspect of hospital birth is that you’re not allowed to eat from the time you begin labor to hours after giving birth.

During a home birth, you can snack right up until time to give birth if you want. As long as your stomach can handle it, go for it.

Pain medication is the main reason they won’t let you eat in the hospital, but at home, you don’t have that worry (especially with natural, unmedicated birth) since you won’t be using anything as strong as what the hospital uses (if anything at all).

Keep in mind though, some of the not-so-lucky few experience nausea during natural birth as well so don’t take my word for it. Test it first by eating a small amount to see how it affects your tummy.

Lower risk of c section

Mommas expecting twins are at an increased risk of c section already and choosing to give birth in a hospital only increases these risks since hospitals have a much higher rate of c sections than home birth.

The fact that c section rates are lower with home birth than hospital birth leads you to believe that women expecting twins will also experience lower rates of c section which is a common reason momma’s expecting twins choose to give birth at home.

You aren’t treated like just another patient

In a hospital setting, you are a patient in the eyes of your doctor and his medical team. On top of that, you feel like one with all those machines attached to your body.

When you’re at home, you can skip that feeling because you get to be yourself and embrace this beautifully natural experience that your body was created for (without machines).

Lower infection rate

It’s not surprising that hospitals have a higher infection rate than at home because so many sick people are in and out all day.

Your house, although it may not be spic and span, is only exposed to the people you let in, and most likely you aren’t letting in a bunch of sick people.

It’s safer for you!

Post-partum hemorrhage and 3rd and 4th-degree perineal lacerations are both serious risks you take when giving birth, but those risks are significantly lower when you give birth at home. (Source)

Post-partum hemorrhage is excessive bleeding after delivery. It’s an extremely serious condition that could result in death.

Although perineal lacerations aren’t as serious as the above-mentioned complication, they are bad all the same.

3rd and 4th degree are the worst tears you can get, 4th degree goes all the way to the anal canal, so as you can imagine, being able to reduce these risks is super important.

Risks of home birth with twins

I’m going to be real with you, risks are increased when you’re pregnant with multiples. Twin pregnancy increases your risk of preterm labor, birth defects, miscarriage, c-section, post-partum hemorrhage, along with other things. (Source)

Since home birth carries a few of its own risks, ACOG advises against home birth with more than one baby.

Although there are only a few heightened risks associated with home birth compared to hospital birth, those risks happen to be serious.

  • According to studies, there is a higher rate of infant mortality in babies born at home compared to babies born in the hospital. The neonatal mortality rate for hospital births was 3.2/10,000 and home birth was 10/10,000. (Source)
  • Increased rate of neonatal seizure, when born at home (compared to hospital birth), is another thing to take into consideration. (Source)
  • Babies born at home also have an increased risk of a 5-minute Apgar score of 0 than babies born in the hospital. To clarify, the 5-minute Apgar score is used to determine how well your babies are making it outside of the womb and needless to say, a 0 isn’t a good sign.

Although the risks are low regardless of setting, these three risks do increase for a home birth.

Who shouldn’t give birth at home?

There are certain situations and conditions that increase the risk of adverse outcomes and possibly the need for medical interventions that you can’t receive in your home. Homebirth is advised against if:

  • You go into labor early. Going into labor before 37 weeks is considered premature. Your little one may need interventions that aren’t provided during homebirth.
  • Your baby is breech. In that case it’s recommended that you don’t attempt a home birth, however, women have successfully delivered breech babies at home. The good news is, midwives are trained in birthing breech babies. On the other hand, doctors are taught to perform c sections. (No wonder hospitals have such a high rate of c section!)
  • You fall in the high-risk category of home birth. (High blood pressure, diabetes, etc.) Again, this doesn’t mean home birth isn’t possible but be sure to seek out the best care possible for your situation.
  • If you are pregnant with more than two babies. Although possible it can be extremely risky to attempt home birth with 3 or more babies.

Safety guidelines

If you choose to proceed with your home birth plans, there are a few safety precautions you need to take into consideration.

  • Make sure you are close to a hospital in case complications arise. (15 minutes away at the most)
  • If your baby is breech, don’t attempt unless your midwife and birthing team are highly skilled in delivering breech babies in a home setting.
  • Only choose a midwife that is certified and has experience birthing multiples at home to make sure you and your baby are in the safest hands as possible to help reduce all risks.
  • Have a backup plan in case something happens and know when to go to the hospital. If you aren’t sure what to look for, this article will tell you everything you need to know!

Differing viewpoints

In the eyes of society, a twin pregnancy is considered “high risk” and home birth shouldn’t be attempted.

Every mother has her own vision of how she wants her birth to go and a right to dictate where and how her labor and birth go down (minus what we can’t control).

There aren’t many studies on twin home birth, only real testimonies from momma’s who have been there firsthand. Just take a look at this inspiring story of twin home birth.

And it doesn’t stop there! There are plenty of them out there. Just do a quick search in google “twin home birth stories” and you will see what I mean.

Some of these stories are truly amazing and inspiring.

Tips for the safest home birth for your twins

If you choose to proceed with the home birth you’ve always imagined, seek a highly skilled midwife that’s experienced in delivering multiple babies at home.

Don’t be rushed to make the decision. Take your time, do your research, ask around so you can make the best decision that ensures you and your babies are in the best hands.

Keep in mind, people will be there ready to discourage you! Stick with what you feel is right and not what anyone else thinks. After all, YOU carried these babies for 9 months.

The choice is yours!

The decision of where you give birth should never be taken lightly. Do as much research as possible.

Read success stories to your heart’s content and prepare yourself for the worst so nothing takes you by surprise!

Now that you know the risks and benefits of home birth with twins, you can safely ponder your choices and hopefully come to a decision – the best decision for YOU!

Please share this article on Pinterest or other social media to help other mommas in your situation!

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