Pregnancy Alters The Mother’s Brain For At Least Two Years!


The instincts of mothers have always amazed us. Scientists have been working to explain the reasons behind maternal instincts with recent research, and they found amazing alterations in the brain!


In this new study, 45 women's MRIs were studied; 25 of these women became mothers for the first time during the study period, while the other 20 remained childless.

Women who were pregnant had another brain scan shortly after birth; the results were quite interesting.

The researchers discovered that the new mothers had significant reductions in the gray matter in some brain regions. In other words, these regions began to shrink.

The reason for the shrinking of these regions is that the unnecessary connections in the brain were being gotten rid of. Mothers’ brains were trying to strengthen their cognitive and emotional processing abilities…

The interesting thing is that during adolescence, these regions shrink in women’s brains as well.

These same brain regions were then found to become active when mothers viewed pictures of their own babies, but not when they saw other children.

It means that these structural changes may help to increase their connection to their kids.

This was seen as an important reason for the structural change in the brain since mothers need to act towards their baby's needs.

The researchers wrote that the continuation of this process after childbirth may also enhance “a mother's ability to decode social stimuli that may signal a potential threat, or to promote mother–infant bonding.”

Two years later, the researchers conducted follow-up scans on all of the new mothers that hadn’t gone on to have a second child.

They found that these changes to their brain structure were still present.

Brain alterations are also seen in rodent mothers.

It helps them become better at foraging so that they can provide for their young.

In sum, the neurological impacts of giving birth appear to help new mothers provide for their babies!

Well, that explains a lot!

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