UCSF researchers report maternal stress could impact the development of a child's parasympathetic nervous system, both in utero and after birth. Additionally, children whose mothers were stressed during pregnancy smile less, are less engaged and have a diminished ability to regulate emotions.
A new study reports maternal stress during pregnancy can increase the risk of female offspring developing mood disorders. Researchers reveal higher maternal cortisol levels during pregnancy were linked to alterations in newborns' functional brain connectivity in emotional processing areas.
Researchers report abnormal development of the prefrontal cortex and maternal stress may lead to brain activity and cognitive impairments linked to psychiatric diseases such as Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Mothers who reported higher levels of parental stress had less synchrony in brain activity with their young children than moms who were more stress-free. The findings shed new light on how parental stress can impact the mother-child relationship on a day-to-day basis.
Stress and depression during pregnancy can affect the fetus' sex and increase the risk of preterm birth. Mothers who experienced physical and psychological stress during pregnancy were less likely to have a baby boy. During pregnancy, the fetuses of stressed mothers had reduced heart rate movement coupling, indicating slower central nervous system development.