"Oh, everything looks bad if you remember it."
-- Homer Simpson

I knew there was a scientific explanation for this…

I’ve finally found it – actual scientific evidence that pregnancy DOES shrink your brain!

In perusing the BBC World New this am, I found this gem:

She said not only are male and female brains different, but women’s brains change throughout life in relation to fluctuating hormone levels.

“That may well affect disease states and how drugs work.”

She scanned the brains of women before and after they were pregnant and found the brain shrank during pregnancy.

The shrinkage was even greater if the woman had a complication of pregnancy called preeclampsia, but reversed by six months after delivery of the baby.

So, Kaveman, there you have it. Not exactly proof, but at least correlation. Perhaps I should view this as a handicap to my Catan games? Ha ha!

11 Responses to “I knew there was a scientific explanation for this…”

  1. This is where I would hope that Kaveman would politely point out that he hasn’t actually played Catan with you in the last two months.


  2. Nope, this is where Kaveman will mischievously remind The Grabber that I’ve been saying for about eight months how the kid’s been sapping her precious brain juices. But noooo, she has to wait until the BBC says it… :-)

    Not play Catan for two months? Who’re you kidding, Boyo? I make at minimum a weekly visit to the Ottawa South Gaming Centre for a game, and on non-insane weeks, it’s two or three visits.

  3. I see that no one has picked up on the fact that we only use a fraction of our brains anyway, and nothing posted thus far indicates that the shrinkage occurs in portions of the brain that are actually used.

    Furthermore, there is no evidence of brain size relating to Catan-playing ability. If there was a correlation of brain-size to Catan prowess, one would assume that Kaveman, with the bigger braincase, would win most of the time, and Grabber, having the smaller braincase, would be the loser most of the time, regardless of pregnancy. Brain size does not equal smarts. I have not observed a sufficient number of games to be certain, but I presume from the tone of the original post that this was not the case prior to pregnancy.

    I hypothesize that rather than having her precious brain juices sucked by the SMP in utero, Grabber’s decrease in Catan ability is more likely to be correlated to the distracting influence of an impending major life change and associated shift in priorities. :P

  4. This is where I would hope that Grabber would go: “huh?”

  5. For your benefit, Boyo:

    Grabber says “huh?” :D

    The Kaveman is a fast becoming a most welcome addition to our household – little Miss SMP enjoys his visits immensely!

    Once I figure out the photo-posting thing, I’ve got some real gems of our little cutie to post. Kaveman, perhaps on your next visit? Like, say, tonight or tomorrow? ;)

  6. Forgive my trolling. I was schooled in the “This stuff will make you go deaf.” – “What?” school of comedy.

  7. Nice non-sequitur Grabber – maybe those brain juices HAVE been sucked away!! :D

  8. Again, I say “huh?” :D

  9. I hear you about brain size not equalling intelligence, Homewrecker. However, it appears that anecdotally at least, people are familiar with the phenomenon of “pregnancy brain”, which apparently results in memory loss and decreased ability to concentrate. I’ve found it quite useful in day-to-day life in recent months (“oh, God, I completely forgot I needed to do a discharge report for that client! Must be pregnancy brain.”) It was a bit distressing early on, but maybe now I’m so immersed that I can’t even remember what it was like to remember anymore. (nods to Boyo here.)

    Myself, I am planning to team up with a cardiologist or exercise physiologist or something and study the effects of oboe playing on heart rate, blood pressure, and blood flow to the small ones (not to mention the normally functioning human brain.) My first rehearsal of the season was quite trippy last night! :) Good thing I don’t play flute or trumpet, the birthing classes have shown us how much the wee ones affect breathing…. contrary to popular belief, you don’t actually need much air to play the oboe, just a CRAPload of backpressure. (good practice for those delivering abs!)

  10. Just as long as a long sustained note on the oboe doesn’t trigger an early delivery! :-)

  11. Hmmm… I wonder what convenient excuse I can come up with to explain why I foget things… Pregnancy brain is out because I am not expecting, I can’t say I’m PMS-ing because I don’t get it, and I’m far too young to be blaming my senility. What’s a non-pregnant young woman to do when her memory eludes her? Oh, I got it, I’m a scatterbrained genius! :D

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