The results of recent researches have shown that new mothers possess a better memory. These findings are in contrast to the notion that women experience a decrease in cognitive function and memory after they give birth to children.
All of a sudden, becoming forgetful and scatty has long been visualized as a part of becoming a mother. But researchers state that the so-called baby brain could just be a myth and in reality having a child could actually better the memory of a woman.
In a sequence of experiments that were conducted, the new mothers scored even better on visuospatial memory tests (the ability to understand and remember things pertaining to their surroundings) when compared to women who did not have children.
When Melissa Santiago from the University of Carlos Albizu, Miami presented her results to a conference of American Psychological Association, she said that the mothers never had to feel bad that they had children since their memory was not the same.
Santiago analyzed the details based on tests conducted on 35 first-time mothers whose kids were in the age group of 10- 24 months and 35 women who had never got pregnant. Both the groups, which mainly included Hispanic women, received scores almost equally in the intelligence tests.
For testing visuospatial memory, these women were permitted to view a paper with 6 symbols for 10 seconds. Later, they were told to draw from what they could remember. The same task was repeated many times. When the paper was shown to the women for the first time, both the groups remembered just around the same amount. However, when it was repeated for the second and third times, mothers fared better than those without kids, showing that mothers cold garner more info every time than the other group.
Following this test, they were shown a range of various symbols and told to remember which of those were also seen on the previous task. The mothers again exhibited a better memory in this task.
Several psychological changes take place in the body during pregnancy and earlier researches indicated that the brain also shrinks down to around 5%. However, it returns to the normal size 6 months after delivery, during which time the brain may re-chart itself, being responsible for the changes in memory.
Santiago said that her discoveries would require to be confirmed by testing a higher sample of women of various ethnicity over time.