An Australian Study shows that ‘baby brain,’ a popular term to describe some pregnant women’s diminished cognitive capabilities during their late pregnancy, is real and not imagined.
In their study, a research team at the Deakin University analyzed 20 studies involving more than 1,200 women. Researchers found that pregnant women had poorer cognitive skills than their non-pregnant peers.
Authors found that baby brain or “mumnesia” seemed to first affect pregnant women in their third semester of pregnancy. In the two first trimesters, there weren’t any memory issues or cognitive skill diminishing. Pregnant women also experienced lower attention to detail and inability to focus on problem solving or planning.
The findings appeared in the Medical Journal of Australia.
Researchers also found that small changes in cognitive functioning appeared early in pregnancy, but the symptoms were the most blatant in the third semester.
Co-author Professor Linda Byrne noted that ‘baby brain’ is a phenomenon that is observed by pregnant women and their close ones. The brain fog is not so obvious as to take pregnant women out of the normal ranges of cognitive function.
Many former pregnant women said that they had troubles in remembering medical appointments or they forgot things while leaving a room. Their ability to navigate complex tasks at work was not affected.
The recent findings confirm that the brain of a pregnant woman undergoes some long-term changes like a reduction in grey matter, which may explain the recently found changes.
Researchers believe that the brain tends to shrink during pregnancy because pregnant women become more focused on important skills for child rearing like social skills and bonding.
Eighty percent of pregnant women have experienced ‘baby brain’ and its symptoms, like poor ability to focus, forgetfulness, and the feeling that they are not as sharp as they used to be before the pregnancy.
Image Source: Pxhere
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