Memory loss during pregnancy and post-pregnancy

Decreased memory during pregnancy is equally common phenomenon of post-birth memory loss, although there have been many studies that show that pregnancy does not alter the brain.

1. Memory loss during pregnancy

Pregnancy does not alter a woman's brain, although many people feel their memory is not as good as it should be.

Of course, there will be more evidence from studies that point to memory decline during pregnancy as real. Many pregnant women insist their memory has deteriorated greatly since discovering they are pregnant.

But indeed, according to studies, the normal volume of the brain does not change during pregnancy. Many studies are conducted to survey this condition. The results all showed that there were no differences in the functioning of pregnant and non-pregnant women. Women in all 3 pregnancies do not have much change in brain structure, significant memory or concentration ability.

2. So what causes memory loss during pregnancy?


The amount of progesterone and estrogen in the brains of pregnant women is estimated to increase by about 15-40 times compared to normal

Even in normal people, memory loss or forgetfulness can still occur if you are too busy, stressed, or insomnia.

During pregnancy, the content of certain hormones increases rapidly. The amount of progesterone and estrogen in the brains of pregnant women is estimated to increase by about 15-40 times compared to normal. These hormones affect every neuron in the brain.

Moreover, there are more things to prioritize, more to do to take care of the fetus, how to make the fetus healthy while still having to balance work and daily life. IQ hasn't changed at all, but the list of priorities that women are interested in during this period often varies greatly.

These two are thought to be the main factors that cause memory loss during pregnancy to occur in women.

In addition, during pregnancy, the weight of the fetus gradually increases, which entails many common problems. The woman's body undergoes profound changes both physically, psychologically, daily activities. Women during this period are very difficult to avoid fatigue, discomfort that makes memory, concentration and stability in daily activities not good.

3. Post-birth memory loss

Post-birth is also a time when many women feel their memory decline, often remembering before forgetting later, confusion,… The causes of this phenomenon may be due to:

  • Estrogen female hormone imbalance: Estrogen increases during the first 6 months of pregnancy and then gradually decreases in the last 3 months and lasts up to 3 months after birth. This hormone has a strong effect on the brain, so when this hormonal content changes, this sudden deficiency causes the body to not adapt in time, leading to forgetfulness, poor memory.
  • Oxytocin: After birth, the amount of the hormone oxytocin also increases sharply to help the uterus contract to return to its original size, increasing the secretion of milk – which also partly affects the transmission path of the brain.
  • Depression :When the child is born, the mother must take on many noble responsibilities. With the pressures around, despite the deteriorating appearance has not recovered, lack of attention, sharing of the husband, fear of husband having an affair, children crying, having to keep pace with work after a long time of rest,… these pressures make women more susceptible to stress, difficulty focusing, and post-birth memory loss.
  • Do too many things at once: Hugging too much work at the same time makes the woman exhausted and tired. But the nervous system works best only when it comes to controlling one thing at a time. Having to scatter thoughts into multiple activities at the same time will reduce memory, easily confused and forgetful.
  • Undernourishment: The process of pregnancy and childbirth causes the woman's body to experience a lot of pain, physical changes, causing anemia, calcium deficiency. Especially women who breastfeed, if not supplemented with nutrients, can cause lack of substances, iron deficiency, anemia to the brain causing post-birth memory loss.
  • Lack of sleep: The greatest struggle of post-birth women is to regularly stay up late to breastfeed, change diapers or wake up when the baby is crying, very rarely mothers get a full sleep. If women are still working early, they have a worsening lack of sleep. Lack of sleep makes the brain tired, inactive and forgetful.

Early signs of post-birth depression

The biggest struggle of post-birth women is to regularly stay up late to breastfeed

4. How to limit post-birth or forgetfulness?

  • Eat foods that are beneficial to memory: such as eggs, greens, foods rich in iron, omega 3, omega 6 …
  • Take advantage of sleep: enlist when the baby sleeps, simplify cleaning, washing,…
  • Call for help from your husband and relatives or you can ask for more help for your family.
  • Focus on what you're doing: try to get it done one by one.
  • Arrange items in a fixed place such as keys, phones, credit cards …
  • Relaxation: The brain needs to rest and relax to work well. Exercise, relax, listen to soothing music, practice yoga,… are measures that women can consider.
  • Make a to-do list: List, take notes on what to do during the day, list of important things or appointments, items to buy when going to the supermarket … Try to maintain daily activities in the most orderly way.

The Psychological Clinic – Share99 Times City International Health Hub officially came into operation in April 2019, with the function of outpatient examination, consultation and treatment of psychological and mental health issues. With modern equipment, Share99 Psychological Clinic is currently cooperating with experienced professors and experts along with combining the implementation of psychological tests, intensive psychological therapy for diagnosis and treatment, in order to bring the best medical examination and treatment effect.

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Article reference source:


  • Early signs of post-birth depression
  • Overcoming Post-Birth Depression: What to Know
  • Post-birth depression recognition – can this disease cure itself?

About: Minh Quynh

b1ffdb54307529964874ff53a5c5de33?s=90&d=identicon&r=gI am the author of I had been working in Vinmec International General Hospital for over 10 years. I dedicate my passion on every post in this site.


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