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Prenatal stress affects your baby for a lifetime

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Prenatal stress affects your baby for a lifetime

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) – Stress can cause a variety of negative health problems. When you’re pregnant, stress can also affect your baby. New research now shows that this effect could last much longer than experts once thought.

Weight gain, swelling, back pain, mood swings. Pregnancy causes all kinds of physical and emotional changes that make many women feel stressed!

Experts know that very high levels of stress during pregnancy can lead to insomnia, headaches, high blood pressure and an increased risk of premature birth. Now, a new study suggests that negative prenatal stress can affect a baby into adulthood.

Harvard researchers tracked 40 men and 40 women for more than four decades. They found that middle-aged people who were exposed to significant stress in the womb had poor stress regulation up to 45 years later. Tests also showed that male and female brains responded differently to prenatal stress.

The good news is that you can lower your stress levels.

A relaxation activity like yoga or meditation can help. This also applies to a healthy diet, exercise and adequate sleep. If you have experienced a traumatic event, you may want to speak to a professional therapist who can help you process your emotions in a healthy way.

In another study led by researchers at UC San Francisco, mothers who reported more stressful during pregnancy had infants with more health problems in the first year of life. For every one point increase in reported prenatal stress, there was a 38 percent increase in infectious diseases in the babies.

Contributors to this news report are: Marsha Lewis, producer; Robert Walko, videographer; Robert Walko, editor.

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