Pregnancy Brain: Is it a just a myth?

I’ve always said that being pregnant has been the ruin of what used to be an extraordinary intelligence– mine, that is. I used to be smart. Really. I was always at the top of the class. I figured things out. I was sharp. Clever. Witty. But ever since I had kids, I find it hard to think, sometimes, to find the right words.  I can’t remember how old I am. I don’t remember birthdays or other significant events, and sometime I’m not even sure what day of the week it is.

The bad news is that the so-called “pregnancy brain” may not really exist. According to The Australian, “A team at the Australian National University found that the memory and brain functioning speed of mothers and pregnant women were no different from those of childless women.”

So I guess I’m just loosing it. Maybe this is what happens as we age. But twenty-six– er, twenty-seven, is young to start feeling senile, don’t you think?

At least I’m not alone. Paula Kruger from ABC feels the same way: “I myself, being four months pregnant, could not remember the name of my four-year-old son this morning.  I could think of several names for the pet Labrador, especially given he’d stolen another slice of jam toast off the bench-top.  But to remember my own son’s name, I had to take a moment and a deep breath.  So you could imagine my confusion on hearing that scientists at the ANU have found the widely held belief that pregnancy and motherhood can turn a woman’s mind to mush is actually myth.”

According to Professor Helen Christensen from the ANU’s Centre for Mental Health Research, “it’s a miss-attribution of a normal cognitive function lapse.” That’s great.  So am I really just getting old? Could be. But she also attributes this pregnant “dippiness” to things such sleep deprivation and fatigue, which makes me feela little bit better, although I’m not sure why. Aks me again after I’ve had a full night’s sleep…

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