Many people struggle with the emotional, practical and financial repercussions of a multiple birth, with parents far more susceptible to mental health problems such as extreme stress and depression.
Some evidence also suggests that parents of IVF multiples experience greater difficulties with parenting and more problems with child behaviour than parents of naturally conceived children.
The literature suggests that, parents of multiples have often gone through a lengthy and difficult process addressing and treating their fertility problems, which impacts on their longer-term experience of parenthood.
Research shows that:
“Multiple birth is the single biggest risk to the health and welfare of children born after IVF and so the dramatic reduction in multiple births from a quarter in 2008 to 1 in 6 in 2013 is a remarkable achievement, and testament to the collaborative effort between patient groups, professional bodies and the HFEA. However, we must continue our efforts to get to the multiple birth rate to 1 in 10 or less.”
Sally Cheshire, Chair of the HFEA