Cobedding of twins: a natural extension of the socialization process?

MCN Am J Matern Child Nurs. Jul-Aug 2003;28(4):260-3. doi: 10.1097/00005721-200307000-00011.


From the point of conception, twins share a small, dark, enclosed space in which their bodies touch and are jostled together. Each twin is constantly interacting with his or her fellow womb-mate. At birth, they leave their warm, comforting environment and are separated from each other by well-meaning healthcare providers. In recent years many have come to recognize a need for twins to remain together in a common crib after birth as institutions initiate developmental care, and implement policies that help to alleviate the stress after birth. Cobedding is a newly recognized developmental care practice that could help twins adjust to the extrauterine environment by allowing them to coregulate their body temperatures, sleep/wake cycles, and state-regulation, and self-soothe as well as soothe each other. The potential benefits and risks of cobedding twins are explored in this article through a review of literature.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child Development / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Incubators, Infant*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature / physiology*
  • Infant, Premature / psychology*
  • Intensive Care, Neonatal / methods
  • Neonatal Nursing / methods
  • Nonverbal Communication
  • Psychology, Child*
  • Risk Factors
  • Sleep / physiology
  • Socialization*
  • Twins / psychology*
  • Wakefulness / physiology