Why does 'baby brain' strike most moms-to-be?

New study shows why pregnant women are forgetful

INDIANAPOLIS - If you’ve ever been pregnant, you know all about "baby brain." For nine long months, it can get in the way of almost everything -- but new information shows there is a real reason why pregnant women are so forgetful.

Good Morning Indiana anchor Beth Vaughn is 23-weeks pregnant and can vouch for all pregnant women out there that remembering simple things can be more difficult than usual. She sought out answers and advice from one of the busiest women in Indianapolis during the month of May.

If you look closely at one of the area's most famous IndyCar team owners, you might notice something unexpected at the track -- a baby bump.

Sarah Fisher of Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing is already a mother to one, but her next child is due next month. With the greatest spectacle in racing approaching this weekend, Fisher said she is really trying to keep "baby brain" at bay.

"It's probably just a hormonal balance of what you're body going through -- but yeah -- your brain gets sucked right down in your belly," Fisher said.

Experts offered an explanation why:

"We think it's just related to the hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy. And then, there's a new study out that is showing that pregnant women actually have increased function in the right side of their brain. That's the side of the brain that deals with emotions, intuition, recognizing faces, thoughts, feelings and we really think that's important because it prepares women to bond with their baby after they deliver," Dr. Susan Benson, an OB-GYN at St. Vincent Hospital, said.

Benson offered advice for the patients who are frustrated that they can’t remember what they need to remember.

"Healthy lifestyle is first: nutrition, sleep and exercise and then just making lists -- that will help them remember the tasks in their day that they need to get through," Benson said.

Fisher said that is exactly how she plans to keep her team racing toward the checkered flag this weekend.

"You have to take it one step, one task at a time and check them off. I think having a check list that I can see what I have done helps motivate me to get past the next step," Fisher said.

Have you or someone you know experienced "baby brain?" Join the conversation on the RTV6 Facebook page.

Follow Beth Vaughn on Twitter: @bethvaughnrtv6 | Facebook: BethVaughnNews

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