The Truth Behind the “Mommy Brain” Theory

Can you recall the confusion of moms after they give birth? Are you, yourself, one of them who blanks out when asked to provide a simple answer? You might just be experiencing the ‘Mom brain’.

Many of us have heard before how women become often more confused, right after they have given birth. By all means they do. Going through all that biological metamorphosis, the change in their anatomy, hormone misbalance, lack of sleep and proper nourishment – all of these are combined factors which clearly affect their well-being after giving birth. However, turns out that the change is not only related to our bodies, but to our minds as well.

Mommy brain seems to be a real thing, and there have been several studies backing up this theory, with women sharing their stories of how they forget very basic words, and cannot express themselves clearly. I noticed the same thing happening to one of my best friends who recently became a mother, and I started digging a bit more to understand what is really happening to her. She kept saying how she is having difficulties expressing herself in front of people, especially now that we are out of pandemic isolation measures and we are slowly getting back to our social lives. So, I looked things up, and I came across the term “mommy brain”.

Generally, “mom brain” refers to the forgetfulness and brain fog that some mothers experience after the birth of their children. You will encounter this issues in different terms such as: mom brain, mommy brain, mom-nesia or baby brain.

Scientists have discovered that there is a neurobiological change in a woman’s brain both during pregnancy and after, which impacts verbal memory.

Abigail Tucker, the author of “Mom Genes: Inside the New Science of Our Ancient Maternal Instinct.” thinks that mommy brain is not only our imagination. In fact, studies have shown that pregnancy results in a loss of gray matter in mothers’ brain areas involved in social cognition. Scientists have found that moms have trouble with verbal recall and the kinds of skills that are in the fancy-pants part of the human brain.

 “The hormones of pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding prompt a host of genetic changes that ultimately shift our brain architecture,” – Abigail Tucker, author of “Mom Genes: Inside the New Science of Our Ancient Maternal Instinct

This is scary, isn’t it? Thinking that at some point of your life you will be focusing and sacrificing everything for your toddler. However, while the gray matter is lost, looks like other things are gained.

Women gain diverse super-powers after they become mothers. Remembering all the schedules, being extra alert towards dangers, observation skills, coping mechanisms and new problem solving techniques that can leave everyone amazed.

After all, even regarding the Mommy brain, researchers have come to the conclusion that these changes are meant to better equip a new mom with the ability to care for her baby. In other words, these brain changes allow new mothers to adapt and zoom in on the needs of the baby. 

In other words, it’s not that your ability to think straight is slipping. It’s just that your attention is now slowly being transmitted to your little one. And after being used to think for ourselves for a long time now, of course this change will leave some footprints on you. But Science says there’s nothing to worry about. All of the changes have more upsides than downsides, as we become more prone to handle any sort of situation, and more emotionally prepared to take all sorts of decisions.

Picture: Shutterstock / ID: 697952245


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