All About Pregnancy

About four million women will give birth in the U.S. this year. Pregnancy and its attendant hormonal changes have varying effects on moms-to-be and their mental health. And a wave of research on the importance of the fetal environment shows its long term impact on physical and psychological development.

Recent posts on Pregnancy

What Is the Future of Genetic Testing?

Anxious about the onslaught of genetic tests? A new book weeds through the morass.

Teen Pregnancies Fall But School Sex Ed Doesn’t Work. Huh?

By Michael Castleman M.A. on March 15, 2017 in All About Sex
The number of teen pregnancies has plummeted by more than half in a generation. But a new analysis shows that school-based sex education classes don't work. How is this possible?

The Benefits of Breastfeeding...for Mothers

By Robert D. Martin Ph.D. on March 14, 2017 in How We Do It
Breast-feeding benefits mothers, not just babies. It speeds recovery of the womb after birth. Later in life, risks of heart disease and breast and ovarian cancer are reduced.

Should We Focus on a Women’s Weight During Pregnancy?

By Alexis Conason Psy.D. on March 11, 2017 in Eating Mindfully
The irony of weight-focused care is that the more preoccupied we become with trying to control our weight, the more out-of-control it often becomes.

Five Ways that Evolutionary Psychology Informs Medicine

The field of evolutionary medicine is changing our understanding of best practices in healthcare at a breakneck pace. Evolutionary psychology is helping lead the way. Here's how.

Texas Bill Could Enable Doctors to Legally Lie to You

By Cortney S. Warren Ph.D. on March 02, 2017 in Naked Truth
Although Texas Senate Bill 25 may seem to be about abortion and your right to sue your doctor—it is actually fundamentally about medical ethics and honesty.

Janet Jackson Gives Birth at 50: Two Older Mother Pluses

By Susan Newman Ph.D. on February 07, 2017 in Singletons
Waiting to have your babies? It can be difficult and expensive to have babies older, but new research reveals potential benefits.

Pregnancy Changes the Brain for the Better

By Lydia Denworth on January 31, 2017 in Brain Waves
Feeling forgetful in pregnancy? Your brain is changing, but in ways that will help in motherhood.

The Importance of Reducing Stress During Pregnancy

How is prenatal stress affecting you and your developing baby? Simple stress reduction skills can make a difference.

Do You Have the Winter Blues?

Do you know this difference between seasonal affective disorder and major depression and how you can feel better?

Is There a "Right" Way to Birth a Child?

Discourses of childbirth are charged and contentious, ranging from "natural" to "medicalized." But what is an "ideal" birth and who has the moral authority to define it?

“Pro Choice?” “Pro Life” Except for Rape & Incest? Come On

By Peter Edelstein M.D. on December 11, 2016 in Patient Power
How can someone be "Pro Life" except in the case of rape and incest? And abortion is not really about "Choice." What role do medical facts play in an honest debate about abortion?

Older, Single, and Choosing to Be a Parent—Why Not?

By Susan Newman Ph.D. on November 21, 2016 in Singletons
The number of single parents of all ages is growing. Is there a “correct” timeframe or blueprint for becoming a parent?

Exercise During Pregnancy May Benefit Kids' Long-Term Health

By Christopher Bergland on November 07, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
Staying physically active during pregnancy may benefit the long-term health of a mother's offspring, according to new research on mice.

Children: Stairway to Heaven?

“The dirty little secret of parenthood ... is that those first 18 years of of parenting are the most difficult, most exhausting, least fulfilling years of anyone’s life."

Having the Conversation: Birth Control and LGB+ Teens

By Michele Ybarra MPH, Ph.D. on November 02, 2016 in Connected
How to talk to lesbian and bisexual teens about contraception.

Representing Young Mothers in Literature

By Ariel Gore on October 31, 2016 in Women and Happiness
When The Amazing True Story of a Teenage Single Mom was first published, I’d never seen myself—a young mom—represented in a graphic novel. The brilliant book broke ground...

Men Can Now Take Birth Control, Too

A new study confirms the efficacy of an injectable birth control method for men. But is it safe enough to bring to the market?

9 Compassionate Tips for Surviving the Death of Your Baby

By Deborah L. Davis Ph.D. on October 24, 2016 in Laugh, Cry, Live
October is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month. The death of a baby can bring profound grief. Here are some words of comfort and wisdom to carry parents through their mourning.

A Man’s ABCs of Miscarriage

Miscarriage is a real and painful loss for the father-to-be as well.

Medical Marijuana and Pregnancy

By Ira J. Chasnoff M.D. on October 15, 2016 in Aristotle's Child
Should a doctor do a pregnancy test before prescribing marijuana to a woman of childbearing age?
Public Domain, Pixabay

It's Pregnancy Loss Awareness Month: How to Help Others

By Monica N. Starkman M.D. on October 14, 2016 in On Call
Mark Zuckerberg gave us clues about the psychological toll of pregnancy loss. Here's more information about how to help others.

Antidepressants Are Safe During Pregnancy

By Temma Ehrenfeld on October 14, 2016 in Open Gently
It's okay to take antidepressants while pregnant—and essential if you are severely depressed.

Are Antidepressants Dangerous in Breast Milk?

By Temma Ehrenfeld on October 14, 2016 in Open Gently
Don't leave depression untreated while breastfeeding. Babies fed milk from depessed mothers gain less weight, but not if she takes an anti-depressant.
Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Why Pregnant Women Have Bizarre Bad Dreams

By Michelle Carr on October 13, 2016 in Dream Factory
Pregnant women report 2.5 times more bad dreams than non-pregnant women, and 80% of new mothers report their dreams to be particularly vivid and detailed during pregnancy.

Why Parents Insist on Giving Their Babies Unusual Names

By Jean M Twenge Ph.D. on September 28, 2016 in Our Changing Culture
What's going on with baby names? Blame Millennials and their need for uniqueness.
Public Domain, PIxabay

Infertility and Miscarriage: Emerging From the Shadows

By Monica N. Starkman M.D. on September 21, 2016 in On Call
Open, compassionate discussion of reproductive failure is necessary in order to combat the social stigma that surrounds it.

Birth Is Just One Day, Parenting Lasts a Lifetime

By Darby Saxbe Ph.D. on September 15, 2016 in Home Base
Most prenatal classes focus on preparing for birth - but ignore what happens after the baby comes. Without postpartum prep, the transition to parenthood can be rocky.
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Perinatal Psychiatry, Birth Trauma & Perinatal PTSD, Part 1

By Shaili Jain M.D. on August 31, 2016 in The Aftermath of Trauma
I recently spoke with Dr. Rebecca Moore to understand more about Birth Trauma and PTSD.

Perinatal Difficulties

By Patrick B. McGrath Ph.D. on August 19, 2016 in Don't Try Harder, Try Different!
Perinatal anxiety and depression: Time to bring it out of the shadows.