Prenatal Anxiety Predicts Differences in Cortisol in Pre-Adolescent Children
The implications for this are staggering. Consider a few scenarios: pregnant mother told antidepressants are okay in the 3rd trimester, a pregnant mother under abnormal levels of stress, or an insulin resistant mother with abnormally high levels of cortisol. All of these scenarios lead to differing levels of neurotransmitters in the bloodstream. The developing fetus is bathed in these hormones.
So, take the antidepressants–the developing fetus becomes used to abnormally high effectiveness of serotonin. Baby gets born, no more drugs and their brain now detects a serotonin deficiency, even though their is no true physiological deficit. Run the same scenario for a stressed out mom with high cortisol levels. Not a good situation for the child, and this is one of the reasons I am a little pessimistic about our future generations’ risk of chronic diseases. I think we have yet to have scratched the surface of chronic diseases and shortened lifespans.