Babies born to mothers who experience domestic violence during pregnancy have altered brain development and changes in brain structure. In females, maternal exposure to IPV was associated with a smaller amygdala, a brain area associated with social and emotional development. In males, the caudate nucleus size was increased. This brain area is associated with multiple functions including memory, learning, reward, and movement. The findings may explain why children of mothers who experience domestic abuse are more likely to suffer from mental health problems later in life.