The main causes of pregnancy brain in expecting mothers include hormonal changes, anxiety, stress and fatigue. Pregnancy is a complex and beautiful condition that allows the human race to reproduce and procreate. During this period of nine months, women’s bodies go through a host of complex changes in order to accommodate the developing foetus and make way for the growing life within. This expansion of the uterus is not an isolated event, however, and the changes in the anatomy of women’s bodies may manifest as various symptoms which are bound to be confusing at first.
Morning sickness is one common example. But a more psychological sign may be observed in the condition that is commonly referred to as pregnancy brain. Most women in their pregnancy may experience a short term memory problem. If you have experienced something similar, or are worried about your partner having these issues, there is no need to panic.
The hormonal changes occurring may give rise to some mild amnesia in women bearing children and the biological and psychological changes in the body are enough to account for what is pregnancy brain.
What is Pregnancy Brain?
Pregnancy brain sounds like one of those made-up problems usually ascribed to pregnant women, but the condition is common enough. Almost 50 to 80 percent women experience pregnancy brain as and when they prepare for motherhood. Also called ‘momnesia’, pregnancy brain constitutes lapses in memory, and may even involve issues related to focusing and concentration. The exact reason behind the occurrence of pregnancy brain in expectant mothers is not known for certain, but research has been going on to find the exact cause for some time now.
On an emotional level, the answer to what is pregnancy brain is not very difficult to understand. The novelty of the experience and ideas of what it would be like to start this new chapter in your life can rightfully give rise to a lot of excitement and anxiety. Research has shown that pregnancy brain often develops or gets worse in the third trimester of pregnancy, with the date of delivering the baby drawing close.
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What Causes Pregnancy Brain?
Some of the causes behind the condition may be chalked up to the following:
- Hormonal changes: The hormonal changes occurring in the body can give rise to a range of physiological and psychological changes in how the body works. This can indirectly result in memory loss as you are preoccupied with fear about the future.
- Anxiety and stress: Anxiety and stress about the baby and its safety can also cause you to lose track of everyday things, leading to you forgetting or misplacing memories immediately related to you day to day life.
- Fatigue: The emotional and psychological stress may give rise to a significant amount of fatigue, which definitely does not help the case of pregnancy brain.
How to tackle pregnancy brain?
Pregnancy brain is a highly unpredictable condition that can occur in unprecedented ways. But taking a more organized approach in your daily life is bound to make things significantly easier. Here are a few ways in which you can do that:
Maintain a daily calendar
Maintaining a calendar, and updating and referring to it on a daily basis can really help with any memory lapses that you might be having. Remember to update the calendar so that you can stay on top of things, even when you are stressed out.
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Select specific places to keep important objects
Set a specific counter for keys and drawer for your cash so that you can find what you need, even if you cannot remember where exactly you kept things. This is bound to make it easier to deal with pregnancy brain.
Set reminders and alarms
With all the stress, you are bound to forget certain important tasks or appointments. Set reminders on your phone so that you can get to chores as and when necessary.
Use mnemonic devices
Using different memorizing techniques may be of great help if you are having trouble remembering important lists. Try them out and see if they are of any use.
Carry a notebook
It is important to have a written draft of all the notes you make to yourself to refer to, especially if you are having memory problems owing to pregnancy brain. Carry a notebook around in order to jot down the important stuff.
Use a notebook app
If you cannot carry an actual notebook, using a notebook app on your phone or tablet may be an easy and convenient alternative to list things down. Having them saved on your phone cannot hurt, especially if you tend to forget important information.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle
A healthy sleep cycle and daily physical exercise can also help increase your focus. Make sure that you have ample sleep and exercise to prevent pregnancy brain from disrupting your life.
You have enough to do as it is with the baby on its way. Learn to let things go and delegate chores to friends and family who are willing to help you out. This can go a long way in preventing unnecessary stress.
Ask for help when you need it
Don’t be hesitant to ask your partner and your family for any help that you may need.
While pregnancy brain is temporary and a fairly mild condition, if you are having serious trouble it is imperative that you consult a medical professional immediately. If the memory lapse and focusing issues also include symptoms of depression, you must seek out professional help.