Published on April 16th, 2016
550 Twins and their numbers are increasing! It is in the lesser known Kodinhi village in Malappuram district of Kerala , which has earned the epithet of “Twin Town”.
The village has gained an international fame for the unusually large number of multiple births in the village. It has the world’s highest twinning rate with over 300 twins within a radius of four square kilometres. Kodinhi is noted for having a high twinning rate although India has one of the lowest twinning rates in the world.
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Baffled doctors and experts have been left scratching their heads over the phenomenon that has seen almost seven times as many twin born than the global average of 13.1 twins per 1,000 births. They believe that some chemical elements in the water could be the reason of this phenomenon.
According to villagers, the twin phenomenon only started occurring three generations ago. There are lots of reasons for twins, but the underlying uniqueness of Kodinhi lies in the following facts:
- The number of twins per thousand here is around 45 per 1,000 births.
- Indians, people in the sub-continent, have the lowest acknowledged incidences of twinning in the world at around four per thousand.
- In addition, there is no IVF treatment here because of the prohibitive cost. Global rates of twins being born, especially in the western world, have increased because of artificial insemination.
- Also, twins are born usually to older, more mature women. In Kodinhi that is not the case because marriage happens much younger here at around 18-20 years old and families begin very soon after.
- Another factor that bucks the trend is that twins occur in women who are generally over 5ft 3in in height. The height of women in Kodinhi is around 5ft on average.
Let’s explore some less known fascinating facts about twin babies and twin pregnancies:
Born twins with different fathers
This phenomenon is called “Heteropaternal Superfecundation” or just simply bipaternal twins. This happens when two eggs are fertilized in the same cycle by sperm coming from separate partners. The rareness of this is 1 in every 400 fraternal twin pregnancies.
Mother of twins has longer life span
There was a study that was published in The Royal Society revealing that mothers of twins have lived longer.
Twin babies have their own secret language
This is called cryptophasia. A language developed by twins. A research that was published in the journal Institute of General Linguistics has revealed that 40 percent of twin babies have their own secret language.
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