Odds of Having Twins

Joe Rawlinson by Joe Rawlinson - August 9, 2021

According to the National Vital Statistics Report, generally speaking, your odds of having twins are about 3%:

The twin birth rate rose 2 percent for 2004, to 32.2 twins per 1,000 total births… The twinning rate has climbed 42 percent since 1990 (from 22.6), and 70 percent since 1980 (18.9). The number of live births in twin deliveries rose to 132,219, nearly double the number reported for 1980 (from 68,339)

You are more likely to have fraternal twins than identical twins.

Odds of Having Identical Twins

Your chances of having identical twins are pretty consistant regardless of your age, race, or family history: 1 in 285.

My wife and I have identical twin girls so we won that lucky 1 in 285 lottery.

Increased Odds of Having Twins

You are more likely to have fraternal twins in any of the following cases because the mother is more likely to have multiple eggs release during ovulation:

  • The mother is over 35
  • You have fraternal twins that run in the family
  • The mother is taking any type of fertility drug
  • You are pregnant thanks to in vitro fertilization or similar procedures

Sorry Dad, your family history doesn’t really factor into whether you’ll have twins or not.



Further Reading

Dad's Guide to Raising Twins book
Don't forget to pick up a copy of the definitive guide to raising twins. "Dad's Guide to Raising Twins" was written for fathers of twins to help guide you through the first several years with twins. Click here to learn more about the book and get your copy.

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