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How Becoming a Parent Changes Your Brain

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How Becoming A Parent Changes Your Brain

Of course, your body changes when you are pregnant. Your stomach becomes stretched, your breasts enlarge, you get lots of heartburn and constipation.

Did you know that also change your brain when you have a child? This includes fathers as well and not only ‘baby brain’ for pregnant women. New fathers have to also deal with brain changes.

Shrinking Brain

During scientific research, the brain of a number of women was scanned before and after their first pregnancy. There came a striking fact emerges: the brain revealed in some places to shrink. The areas in which this happened, have to do with estimating other people’s emotions. That seems odd, as is an expectant mother not correct more sensitive and more considerate?

According to Farooq Hameed, the brain researcher at the University of Leiden, parenting has a change probably as a goal that the expectant mother can better assess what her child needs. Because the brain is less sensitive to the needs of others, an expectant mother can better focus on her own child. That helps in the so-called ‘ bonding’ process.

Lasting changes in The Brain Structure

The research from Hall recently showed that the altered brain structure, perhaps permanently, persists. When the brain of the women after 2 years was again examined, turned out the differences in the brains of women who (still) no mother are still detectable. Although women for centuries, claiming that motherhood has changed them profoundly, so actually this science has now demonstrated.

Daddy’s Brain

Having a child also has a considerable impact has on the brain of the father, an American study found that Sixteen new fathers were sometimes subject to an MRI scan and a depression test. Three to four months after the birth of their offspring, they were found to have certain components in the brain in most Dad’s have become bigger. These were among other things to the amygdala and other parts that have to do with emotion, motivation and making decisions. A striking detail: the fathers whose brain areas rose the most, were also the least prone to develop depression.

The Effect of hormones on the brain

The changes in the brain structure at new mothers are caused by hormones. A pregnant woman makes during that nine months just as much oestrogen as a childless woman throughout her entire life. That hormone can change the brain structure was already known. A similar process takes place at puberty. Also in their brain reduces in some places the grey matter, thanks to the large increase in sex hormones testosterone and oestrogen. Presumably, this change makes sure that the brain can work more efficiently.

The difference between Fathers and Mothers

All those scientific investigations provide fun facts on. Did you know for example that:
– Fathers react differently to daughters than sons? For example, A father will have a faster reaction to his daughter when she calls than when a son is calling for his attention.
– Do mothers focus on the baby’s care, while fathers are more enthusiastic about the child’s future?

A new Dad’s mind already works on things like school fees and juniors partner choice instead of bottle feeding or changing diapers.

So know that you know that your brain has been altered since the arrival of your baby how does that make you feel?

Sources: Newscientist.com, Scientific American

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