By Emily B. Morgan
According to Fiona Macrae at Daily Mail, the amount of stress, anxiety, or depression a mother has while pregnant can be the reason for a child’s anxiety or depression later in life.
Professor Jonathan Seckl said: “There is an enzyme found in high levels in the placenta and the baby’s brain. It seems to be a natural barrier to stress hormones and it deactivates them.”
Stress levels can sometimes become too high for the barrier to work, so the stress hormones can go through the barrier and into the baby’s brain. This can cause a child to experience problems with behavior, anxiety, and depression.
Strangely enough, eating licorice when pregnant can also produce this result but mostly when eaten in large quantities.
A mother’s stress can also contribute to problems with the baby’s physical health.
Teen Pregnancy and Depression
According to NCBI, pregnant teens run a higher risk for depression than non-pregnant teens or adults. Adolescents that reported symptoms of depression generally gave birth to babies that weighed less than the babies of mothers without depression. Depression during pregnancy can lead to premature delivery and underweight babies. This can even lead to death in some cases.
All in all, it is best to isolate yourself from as much stress as possible during pregnancy, as a teen or an adult.
My sister is pregnant, and she has been experiencing large clusters of stress at a time, sometimes becoming depressed for entire days. So, I decided to do some research on the effects that stress can have on a pregnant woman’s baby, and this was extremely helpful. I will try my best to avoid placing stress on my sister and advise others to do the same.
I hope you found this helpful as well.