Clearly, there are more older moms. In recent years, more than a third of all births have been to women 30 and older, up from just one-fifth in 1980.
Take Victoria Jacobson. At 31, she gave birth to twin girls last April -- her first children. With no history of twins in her family, and no fertility drugs, it was a big surprise when she found out at six months pregnant.
"I cried, because I'm more of a realist. My husband laughed," said Jacobson, of Glen Ellyn, Ill. "They were not tears of joy. Maybe shock, more than anything."
Still, Jacobson doesn't find the new report on twin births surprising. A good friend had twins four months after Jacobson's girls were born. "I'm stopped at every corner and in every store" by mothers who also have twins, or who know of other twins, she says.
"I never knew how many twins were around until I got twins."
Are more twins good news? Some experts say the trend is worrisome, noting that multiple births are more dangerous for the mother and their babies. The infants tend to be born earlier, smaller and weaker, and require much more care.
Jacobsons' twins arrived a month early and were tiny, about 3 pounds each. They had to be cared for in a hospital intensive care unit, and one needed a ventilator at first to help her breathe.
At 8 months, they are still small, but healthy and doing fine. Still, they don't sleep through the night, and breast-feeding two and getting them on the same schedule hasn't been easy, she said.
Despite the challenges, she has this advice to other moms of twins: Don't "think about it as double trouble. It's still a double blessing."
CDC report: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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