Monday, September 08, 2008

Catching up

I can't believe what a delinquent blogger I've been. I guess it was summeritis. We were away in a remote part of Vermont for a while and there was a satellite internet connection when we arrived at the house but within a couple days the groundskeeper ran over the the line behind the barn with his tractor and that was that. For weeks. By then, I was weaned from my techno urges and enjoying a real vacation.

Some random catch-up thoughts: This story got alot more traction in the UK than it did the US, not sure why, even though it was a study out Yale. If Angelina Jolie does have postpartum depression - and, frankly, with colicky twins, that would be excuse enough -- this might go further in explaining why.

From the BBC, Sept. 3
"Natural birth 'may aid baby bond'
Mothers who give birth naturally are more responsive to the cry of their baby than those who choose to have a Caesarean, American research suggests.

Brain scans on 12 new mothers soon after birth found more activity in areas linked to motivation and emotions in those who had a vaginal delivery.

The Yale University team says differences in the hormones generated by birth could be the key.

The women in this study were those who elected to have a Caesarean.

The contractions which are an essential part of a natural birth trigger the release of the hormone oxytocin, which is thought to play a key role in shaping maternal behaviour.

However, undergoing a Caesarean does not trigger the same release of hormones.

The procedure has been linked to an increased risk of post-natal depression.

The Yale team carried out brain scans on 12 women two to four weeks after they had given birth - known as the early postpartum period.

Half had a Caesarean, the other half gave birth naturally.

The differences in brain activity were found in regions that not only appeared to influence a mother's response to her child, but also to regulate her mood.

Lead researcher Dr James Swain said the study, reported in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, might help provide a better understanding of the chemistry underpinning the attachment between a mother and her baby.

"Our results support the theory that variations in delivery conditions such as with caesarean section, which alters the neurohormonal experiences of childbirth, might decrease the responsiveness of the human maternal brain in the early postpartum."

Personality factors

Professor James Walker, a spokesman for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said: "We have long recognised that people who have a caesarean section do sometimes have some problems bonding with their baby."


Natalie said...

Glad you're back!

pinky said...

I hate this. Only because my sister has two adopted children. She loves them dearly. I love them dearly. No problems bonding. No vag birth. NO C-section. Both kids are not caucasian and my sister and I are. STill love them as much as I love my own children. My sister and I are very close.

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