Tips on Combatting Pregnancy Brain: Can it be Defeated?
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I’ve always considered myself to be pretty mentally sharp. That is, until “pregnancy brain” set in. Now I’m lucky if I remember ANYTHING (including what I ate, did or said five minutes prior). My short term memory is fried, however my long term memory is still intact for the most part.
If you’re reading this right now and don’t know what I mean by “pregnancy brain,” “baby brain,” or “mommy brain,” it refers to “memory problems, poor concentration and absent-mindedness reported by many women during pregnancy and early motherhood” (Mayo Clinic).
My head literally feels like it’s at capacity, so I tried to figure out ways on how I could combat it moving forward (because I know that once my daughter arrives, I’ll have even more things to retain). Below are a few things I’ve done that have helped me sharpen my memory.
Whatever it is, write it down…IMMEDIATELY.
I was doing this long before getting pregnant, but I seem to rely on my “Notes” and “Reminders” sections on my iPhone more heavily these days. I also have a magnetic notepad on the refrigerator, a glass board in my office, two additional dry erase boards in the kitchen, and I utilize Siri and Alexa.
Repetition. I repeat, repetition.
When I can’t get to my phone or holler out for Alexa or Siri to set a reminder for me, (say for instance if I’m in the shower), then I’ll repeat my thought(s) over and over in my head until I can get somewhere to write it down. If I end up having multiple thoughts (i.e. clean the bathroom tomorrow, fold those clothes, defrost the chicken), then I’ll use my fingers and hold up however many I need for every idea/thought I have to help me keep track. I know it probably sounds juvenile, but it works for me!
Clearing my mind before bed.
I’m one of those people whose brain is on GO 24/7. Since my brain is always ON, then that means that there are always new thoughts coming in. This usually happens a lot at night when I’m in the bed trying to unwind. So, when I first get in the bed, I let my mind wander for a bit by thinking about tasks that I want to complete the next day, and I’ll write down whatever my “final” thoughts are for the night. Then I’ll do my best to clear my mind by watching TV or turning on my Calm app and shutting down for the night. Funny thing is, I may not be able to remember things that happen in my waking life, but since becoming pregnant, I can fully remember certain vivid dreams I have. Crazy, right?
How do/did you combat mommy brain? Let me know!