You anticipate all of the physical changes that come with pregnancy, such as a growing tummy, swelling calves, and, if you’re lucky, pregnant haemorrhoids. However, there are also conceptual shifts and physiological brain changes that occur in addition to these visible changes.
You are not hallucinating things if you are forgetful, absentminded, or just plain out of it. “Pregnancy brain” is a genuine phenomenon, and it’s not just a normal day-to-day distraction at play. While it might be amusing at the moment (for example, forgetting your date of birth at a pregnancy checkup or realizing you’ve put the vehicle keys in the freezer – again! ), it can also be annoying and worrying.
Want to understand the science driving this silliness and get some tips to help lift the fog? We’ve got your back — and your brain — covered.
What is the pregnancy brain?
You may find it difficult to remember information, focus on tasks, or devote your complete attention to just about anything throughout and after your pregnancy. This is referred to as “mother brain” or “pregnancy brain.” Pregnancy can start as early as the first trimester of pregnancy when your body experiences a big hormonal surge. Insomnia, which is a frequent ailment in early pregnancy, might exacerbate this mental fog. You’re in for a harsh shock if you think the skies will clear after the baby arrives. Hormones will continue to fluctuate after delivery, and sleep deprivation will only grow worse. If your hormone levels stabilize about 6 months after birth, you may feel more like yourself.
What causes a pregnancy brain?
Pregnant brains can develop as a result of numerous physical and mental changes that occur during pregnancy. However, while there is considerable anecdotal evidence of transitory cognitive deterioration, research has produced inconsistent outcomes. While pregnant women and new parents experienced more memory loss and forgetfulness than a control group of nonpregnant women, real neuropsychological assessments revealed little to no difference in brain function between the two groups, according to a 2014 research. Other studies — as well as a healthy dose of common sense — have identified a few major causes. One or more of these elements are most likely to blame for the consequences of a pregnant brain at any particular time.
Hormones, oh hormones, are the culprit for all pregnant woes. Do you have a case of acne that won’t go away? Do you have mood swings? Do you have sore breasts? Hormones, hormones, hormones, hormones, hormones, hormones, hormones, hormones, hormones, Hormones play an important role in a variety of pregnancy-related ailments, which should come as no surprise. During pregnancy, your body produces a large amount of different hormones, including progesterone and oestrogen, and some physicians and scientists believe that this substantial increase may damage your capacity to think, retain information quickly, and focus attentively. In a 2014 study, pregnant women in their second trimester and beyond scored significantly worse on Spatial Recognition Memory (SRM) assessments than non-pregnant women. In other words, individuals had problems recalling item positions and spatial relationships.
Most pregnant women will have sleeplessness at some time throughout their pregnancy. Many expectant mothers will be exhausted throughout the first trimester and may never feel completely rested. Furthermore, early nagging sensations like heartburn, leg cramps, and nausea may prevent a woman from receiving the rest she requires. Others will have a far more difficult time sleeping deeply later in their pregnancy. Finding a comfortable position is practically difficult, aches and pains are likely, and you may need to get up every half hour to pee.
To say the least, proper sleep is scarce throughout those 9 exhausting months, and this is only the beginning of this exhilarating ride.
Stress and anxiety
When you’re pregnant, it’s reasonable to assume that you have a lot on your mind. You’re going to bring new life into the world, which is both weighty and exhilarating, as well as completely overwhelming. You have chores to do, appointments to keep, and preparations to make. To top it off, you can be afraid of delivery, which is a very genuine and valid concern. So, certainly, you’ve got your fair share (and then some) of responsibilities on your plate, filling up your brain space. It’s understandable if you’re having trouble concentrating.
Pregnancy might make you feel a little foggy. You could make a few careless blunders or lose your capacity to think clearly for a while, but with time and patience (and sleep), you’ll be back to your sharp-witted self. Meanwhile, keep in mind that there are legitimate emotional, physical, and physiological causes for this. It might even be your brain’s way of assisting you in the all-consuming, completely overwhelming, and incredibly lovely world of motherhood. And that is something to keep in mind.