Forgetfulness During Pregnancy- Causes And Coping Tips
Pregnancy comes with a host of weird symptoms, and if you are finding it hard to remember things now, do not be surprised. Forgetfulness or ‘momnesia’ is quite a normal condition that accompanies pregnancy, and is sometimes also called as ‘pregnancy brain’. No, this does not mean that your brain gets changed, or your brain’s capacity becomes lesser. ‘Momnesia’ induces memory losses and this stands justified when you are stressed, fatigued, short on sleep, and overly busy. You may tend to forget appointments, phone numbers that you have been dialing since years, where did you keep your purse and the like. Infact, some research carries evidence that women pregnant with girls tend to experience the pregnancy brain more often than those pregnant with boys. Fun fact, eh?
What Causes Forgetfulness During Pregnancy?
Just like everything else that causes upheaval in pregnancy, your pregnancy hormones progesterone and estrogen are the main reason for your short-term memory loss. The surge in hormones affect the spatial memory that stores information affecting the brain circuits and making you absentminded. Add to that the apprehension and excitement of a new life, the lack of sleep and constant fatigue – it is no brainer that all these changes will also affect your priorities – making you give attention to the most important thing that you have on mind as of now. Though many researches point out that a woman’s cognitive ability does not get altered during the course of pregnancy, though your priorities do get shuffled up in this phase. Some researches believe that pregnancy brain generally strikes during the last trimester, when the brain cell volume decreases causing you to forget things. Not to worry though, you will be back to being a brainer a few months after the delivery.
How Can I Help My Memory During Pregnancy?
So if you feel that you are not as sharp as you were before getting pregnant, it is time to devise some simple strategies to avoid the messes. Firstly, begin with de-cluttering the other areas of your life, as with the arrival of the baby many things may not remain important. Simplifying is the key to deal with the pregnancy brain, and here are some tips to go about it:
Note them down: They made stick-ons for a reason, and though you care the least for it, they can come in handy during this forgetful mode of your pregnancy. Note things down and stick them on obvious places – the car steering screaming prenatal vitamins, your purse that has the list of groceries, the refrigerator that shouts the phone calls you need to make, your pregnancy file with the list of questions you want to ask the doctor. Keep the things that you use often at the same places. Making lists and using a daily planner will simplify and help your pregnancy brain to a great extent
Sleep well: Yes, it is difficult, but try getting as much rest as you can. Try to get atleast 8 hours of sleep everyday – the better you sleep, that better your brain functions. Get some exercise so that sleep does not evade you!
Calm yourself: Stress robs you off peace, and affects your whole body with undesirable effects. It will also hamper your sleep. Relax by listening to good music, reading a good book, or simply take some deep breaths. Do not be too hard on yourself – you are and you will be always amazing
Use technology: Why did they invent the Blackberries and the Androids? Download some apps on your mobile and set alarms. These electronic devices can help a great deal to keep you organised, less forgetful and more in control of things
Get more omega-3s: For a healthy brain function, loading on omega-3 fatty acids is a must. Get your share of pregnancy safe fish and DHA rich foods. This also helps the baby’s brain to be sharper
Laugh it off: Take things easy and laugh them off. How many time do you get airheaded and have a great excuse for it? Having a sense of humor will allow you to steal some funny moments and enjoy them with your partner
Delegate duties: Accept and take help. Delegate the things that really do not need your attention now and focus on things that are really important. Ask your husband to pick up groceries on his way back home, hire a help to do household chores etc. In short, cut out your responsibilities for sometime, a big one is already coming your way!
Prepare yourself: In the end, preparing yourself for some glitches during and after pregnancy is a must. Stop trying to be perfect, stop trying to be a super woman. Just be yourself, and do understand that it will be some time postpartum that your brain cells start shining again. Till then, well, who has the time?
Can Forgetfulness Be Harmful?
Not usually, but in extreme cases where women have trouble thinking or concentrating, medical help may be required. If you also start to notice loss of interest in your life and the baby, it could signal postpartum depression and it is best to seek professional advice. You need not suffer alone, talk to your partner and take the help of your caregiver if you are feeling that things are just not the way they should be.