Raising twins can be challenging, but incredibly rewarding.

What you need to know about carrying and raising twins

So you just found out you are pregnant … with twins. Naturally, this can come as a surprise to both first-time or veteran parents. There is a 3 percent, or 1 out of every 30 births, chance of having twins, according to The Bump. So consider yourself lucky! You are delighted, but possibly overwhelmed at just how you are going to juggle raising two babies at once. Yes, raising twins can be difficult as it means twice as much work as raising just one child, yet there are plenty of ways to not only survive the pregnancy and first year, but thrive and enjoy your two new gifts given to you. Here are a few helpful common questions and answers regarding what to do before and after you give birth to twins.

While you're pregnant: 

When will I show? Though most pregnant mothers begin showing around 22 to 28 weeks, if you are expecting twins, you have twice the accompanying placenta growth and fluids that come with the second precious addition. It is typical to show as early as 20 weeks in this case.

What should I eat? It is well known that you will need to consume more than mothers only carrying one child, yet just how much and what to consume can be challenging to determine. The Baby Center writes that the general rule is to add around 300 more calories to your daily diet per baby. Therefore, if you are carrying twins you should add at least 600 more calories to your typical daily intake. Yet, the kinds of calories you consume are much more important than just hitting that number mark.

Fill your diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, gains, dairy and proteins to aid your babies' development.  Try to get around 20 to 25 percent of your calories from protein, 45 to 50 from carbs (though stay away from white carbs) and 30 percent from fats. Another important rule to keep in mind is to eat around five times a day, typically try for three meals and two large snacks, even when you don't feel hungry.

After giving birth:

What should I do first? The first rule of raising twins is not being afraid to ask for or accept help. Reach out to the loved ones in your life for emotional and literal support, as it will make this time easier for you and your partner. Don't underestimate what has to be done while taking care of your two new babies or feel like you have to do it all on your own. If you aren't near family or able to keep consistent help, consider hiring a cleaner to take care of cleaning around the house once a week to free up time to spend with your children. Possibly hiring a sitter once in a while may also give you the break you need to relax and feel ready for the days ahead.

Is developing a routine helpful? From day one, try to develop a strict routine for your babies, writes The Huffington Post. Have set sleep, play, nap and feeding times planned out throughout the day down to the last-minute. Babies like the feeling of familiarity that comes through an expected routine and it also empowers you with a feeling of control. Though some days don't go as planned, just start again the next day with an optimistic attitude and willingness to follow your routine. Furthermore, try feeding them at the same time to keep them on the same schedule and keep you from having to wake up every other minute throughout the night for feeding.

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