We’ve all experienced it (or are experiencing it) – “pregnancy brain” that time during pregnancy when we seem to lose the ability to remember anything! It may be as simple as forgetting a word you’re trying to use or something bigger like forgetting a scheduled appointment, even after being reminded about it. I’ve always made jokes about why I seem to lose my brain when I’m pregnant, but recent studies show that there may be a real, physiological explanation for our forgetfulness.
A study was recently presented to the British Psychological Society, in Birmingham, England. The study found that pregnant women have more activity in the right side of their brain when compared to new moms. This is significant because it indicates a shift in brain activity to help the pregnant mom to be ready and able to bond with her baby after he or she is born. The right brain activity is associated with being “more sensitive to emotional expressions, particularly when looking at babies’ faces,” according to Victoria Bourne, from the department of psychology at Royal Holloway, University of London
By being more affected by our right brain during pregnancy, our left-brain seems to take a little breather. The left side of our brain is generally associated with critical thinking, reasoning and logic. This information, combined with fluctuating hormones, seems like a reasonable explanation for why pregnant women tend to experience emotional absent-mindedness.
While it may be frustrating, especially for someone who is usually very organized, there doesn’t seem to be much you can do to remedy your pregnancy brain. Leaving yourself lots of notes can be helpful as well as utilizing the alarm clock or a reminder app on your phone and getting more sleep when needed. Try not to be too hard on yourself when you find that things have slipped your mind during your pregnancy, everything should return to normal shortly after your baby is born!