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What Is Mommy Brain Syndrome And What Can You Do About It?

What Is Mommy Brain Syndrome And What Can You Do About It?

What is mommy brain syndrome exactly? You’ve probably heard about it from a friend, or perhaps read about it online, but is there any truth to it?

Read on to learn more about this phenomenon, why it happens, and what moms can do about it.

What is mommy brain syndrome?

During and after pregnancy, a mother’s body goes through a number of changes. One of these is known as mommy brain syndrome, or a sudden tendency to be more forgetful or absent-minded.

Based on studies done on the changes that happen to a mother’s brain, there is indeed some changes in gray matter in certain parts of the brain. Gray matter is a type of brain tissue that has a dense population of neurons or brain cells1.

In particular, the parts of the brain which are most affected have to do with social and emotional understanding. This could be a possible explanation to the forgetfulness that some moms experience after giving birth.

Should you be worried about it?

These changes in gray matter don’t necessarily mean that a mother’s brain is becoming “dumber.” On the contrary, researchers discovered that these changes have more to do with better cognitive and emotional development. Basically, the mother’s brain is becoming better at understanding people’s emotions and feelings. This proves especially helpful when mothers try to figure out their baby’s wants and needs.

Another important thing to know about mommy brain syndrome is that studies have shown it doesn’t really affect job performance2. While moms might notice that their ability to concentrate and remember things have declined, it’s not significant enough to affect job performance. This means that working moms should not be too worried about mommy brain.

In addition, other studies have found that mommy brain isn’t as common as people think it is. Though, their data shows that it’s much more common in women who experience depression right before they give birth.

Mommy brain syndrome is actually a good thing

New research suggests that mommy brain isn’t actually a bad thing. In fact, it’s a sign that the brain is changing to adapt to the new role of being a mother. If anything, mothers’ brains even get better after they give birth.

Being a mom isn’t something that you can just turn “off” whenever you want to. Being a mom is a full-time job, with no days off. Right after giving birth, mothers start to breastfeed their child. Eventually, they learn how to change diapers, how to put their child to sleep, etc. As their children grow older, they help out with homework, with various school projects, all the while managing to take care of not just the kids, but their entire family3.

Studies done on older mothers’ brains show that those who had more children had more gray matter in the parts related to memory. And despite being older, their brains seemed more resistant to the effects of aging. This could potentially mean that motherhood might be a key to keeping the brain “young” and active.

Key Takeaways

If you’re currently experiencing mommy brain syndrome, don’t be too worried about it. Mothers go through a lot of changes during and after pregnancy, and it could take some time before your body “settles in” to your new role as a mother.

In the meantime, the important thing is that you enjoy most of your time with your little one. Focus on the good things in life, as well as what lies ahead for you and your family. Eventually, you’ll realize that mommy brain syndrome simply means that you’re becoming a better mother over time.

Learn more about Mother Care here.

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Sources
  1. Why “Mom Brain” Is Good for Mothers and…, https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/why_mom_brain_is_good_for_mothers_and_babies, Accessed September 9, 2021
  2. ‘Baby brain’: Does it exist? – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/expert-answers/baby-brain/faq-20057896, Accessed September 9, 2021
  3. ‘Mummy-brain’ lasts a lifetime – and is beneficial in later life – Monash Lens, https://lens.monash.edu/@medicine-health/2020/12/01/1381827/mummy-brain-lasts-a-lifetime-and-is-beneficial-in-later-life, Accessed September 9, 2021
  4. The real ‘mommy brain’: New mothers grew bigger brains within months of giving birth, https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2010/10/mommy-brain, Accessed September 9, 2021
  5. From baby brain to mommy brain: Widespread gray matter gain after giving birth – ScienceDirect, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0010945220300253?via%3Dihub, Accessed September 9, 2021
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Written by Jan Alwyn Batara Updated 2 weeks ago
Fact Checked by Kristel Dacumos-Lagorza
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