Oh dear, I’m suffering from “baby brain”

By Drum Digital
05 May 2014

Wait . . . I think I left my keys . . . Oh there’s that sock I was looking for earlier! Do you blame your forgetfulness on having been pregnant and often refer to yourself as suffering from “baby brain”? There have been many conflicting reports about this so-called phenomenon with a few medical experts saying there is no scientific reason for it and others arguing it’s an actual medical condition.

Wait . . . I think I left my keys . . . Oh there’s that sock I was looking for earlier! Do you blame your forgetfulness on having been pregnant and often refer to yourself as suffering from “baby brain”? There have been many conflicting reports about this so-called phenomenon with a few medical experts saying there is no scientific reason for it and others arguing it’s an actual medical condition.

A study by Dr Laura Glynn, a psychologist at Chapman University in California, states that a woman’s brain changes during pregnancy. This is a result of the changes in hormones and the effect of the moving foetus on her body. It is believed that these changes occur in order for the woman to be able to concentrate more acutely on the needs of the baby after it’s born. Glynn’s research is published in the journal Current Directions in Psychological Science.

But if you’re one of the moms that don’t experience baby brain, you’re perfectly normal. Dr Roger Harms from the Mayo Clinic refutes the existence of such a condition. “Because the concept of baby brain is so widely accepted, some experts suggest that pregnant women and new mothers are more aware of everyday cognitive slips. As a result, they might mistakenly perceive themselves as having trouble thinking,” he said in an online question and answer session with patients.

Here are 8 tips to combat baby brain:

  1. Exercise: Whether it’s yoga or running, do whatever you can and what is feasible for you.
  2. Keep things simple: Try to keep the rest of your life as simple as possible. No hectic back-to-back meetings if it can be avoided.
  3. Write it down: Leave yourself notes in visible places, make lists and have a diary where you plan your day.
  4. Sleep: Try to get as much regular sleep as possible. Lack of sleep is a major contributor to baby brain.
  5. Eat well: Eat foods high in antioxidants, such as blueberries, Granny Smith apples and healthy fats.
  6. Connect: Spend time with friends, conversation boosts the brain and relieves stress.
  7. Learn: Learning something new will keep your brain active.
  8. Laugh: Don’t stress about being forgetful, it happens and it’s not something to worry about.

? Londiwe Dlomo

SOURCES: PSYCHOLOGICALSCIENCE.ORG, DAILYMAIL.CO.UK, NATURALCHILDMAGAZINE.COM, MAYOCLINIC.ORG

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