Did you know that not just women experience change after giving birth? It turns out that males can experience a wide range of physical and psychological changes when they become fathers, just as the body of the new mother experiences numerous physical and psychological changes throughout pregnancy and childbirth.
Men can feel a range of emotions due to hormonal changes and even pregnancy symptoms. Even though they might not show up the same way in males as they do in women, these do exist. Is that not ridiculous? Many guys go through a lot of changes when the kid is delivered, and it’s time we gave them considerable consideration as well. Would you like to learn about the possible physical and psychological effects of having a baby on you or your partner? Read on to find out!
- Men Can Experience High Levels Of Emotional Sᴛʀᴇss
Mums aren’t the only ones under pressure once the baby arrives. Yes they are more directly responsible to fulfill; the needs of the baby, such as, nursing and soothing them. But parenting responsibilities can result in high levels of stress and anxiety in new dads as they have a new family member who relies upon them and who they need to provide for.
The unfortunate thing is that most men don’t feel like they can seek help when they feel sᴛʀᴇssᴇᴅ ᴀɴᴅ ғʀᴜsᴛʀᴀᴛᴇᴅ with their new ᴅᴜᴛɪᴇs. They don’t want to shift focus from their female partners and worry them. But it is completely normal for men to go through an emotionally turbulent time after the baby arrives and seeking help will help them cope with all the changes better.
- Some Brain Changes May Happen As Well
As it turns out all the hᴏʀᴍᴏɴᴀʟ changes can cause the brain to change as well. Scientists studied the brain activity in a group of new fathers, and it was observed that during the first 4 months after childbirth their brains showed some noticeable changes in the gray matter.
These changes are important as they are responsible for helping new dads develop their parenting skills and build a strong bond with their infants. And as we know, these early father and baby interactions not only build a strong basis for the future parent-child relationship but also play a big role in the child’s cognitive and social development as they grow. The brain of a new father can show more activity in very specific areas such as planning, problem solving and ʀɪsᴋ detection. In other words, these are the areas that help the father make sure their baby is safe and sound. We love to see it!
- Hᴏʀᴍᴏɴᴀʟ Highs And Lows Can Lead To Pᴏsᴛɴᴀᴛᴀʟ Dᴇᴘʀᴇssɪᴏɴ
Most of us have heard of pᴏsᴛɴᴀᴛᴀl dᴇᴘʀᴇssɪᴏɴ in women as it is far more common and detectable. But did you know that men can succumb to pᴏsᴛɴᴀᴛᴀl dᴇᴘʀᴇssɪᴏɴ as well? This may come as a surprise but it isn’t quite as far of a stretch as you think it is. Apart from its other functions, ᴛᴇsᴛᴏsᴛᴇʀᴏɴᴇ also plays a big role in protecting us from feeling low, and when its levels drop, young fathers may become prone to depression. These hᴏʀᴍᴏɴᴀʟ changes coupled with the load of responsibilities of father can be quite overwhelming for men which in turn can make them prone to experiencing mental health issues. This is why it is so important to know that hᴏʀᴍᴏɴᴀʟ and behavioral changes happen in the fathers’ bodies too.
- The Level Of Oxytocin And Dopamine Rises
Yes, that’s right, there are more hᴏʀᴍᴏɴes coming your way. Lower levels of testosterone make way for new hormones to enter into a man’s ʙʟᴏᴏᴅ sᴛʀᴇᴀᴍ. Oxytocin and dopamine are extremely important as these 2 chemicals are responsible for the bond between a parent and their child. When a man finally has a child the positive effects of oxytocin and dopamine rise, making a new father enjoy playing and cuddling with his baby more. How amazing is that!
- The Level Of Testosterone May Drop
We all know that whereas women release a hormone called estrogen, men release a hormone known as testosterone. A high level of testosterone is responsible for behavioral traits like aggression, competition, and attracting a new partner. But something interesting happens when they become a father. A man’s level of testosterone seems to decrease. This suggests that the man’s energy should be focused inward, towards the wellbeing of his family instead of outward.
Studies also suggest that men who already have a partner and those who have children have lower testosterone levels compared to men without kids and those who are still in search of a partner. This is probably biology’s way of shifting a man’s priorities over time. The male bodies learned how to lower testosterone levels in order to shift men’s priorities and turn them into committed fathers.
New fathers go through many changes psychologically and physically and this needs to be addressed as well. This is why it is so important for partners to spend time with each other and bond as a family during those first crucial months.