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Observing baby or sexual videos changes the functional synchronization between the prefrontal and parietal cortices in mothers in different postpartum periods.

Authors
  • Aguirre, Rosa María Hidalgo1, 2
  • González, Marisela Hernández2
  • Hernández, Marai Pérez3
  • Gutiérrez, Claudia Del Carmen Amezcua2
  • Guevara, Miguel Ángel2
  • 1 Laboratorio de Neuropsicología, Centro Universitario de los Valles, Universidad de Guadalajara , Ameca, México.
  • 2 Instituto de Neurociencias, Universidad de Guadalajara , Guadalajara, México.
  • 3 Laboratorio de Neurociencias, Centro Universitario del Norte, Universidad de Guadalajara , Guadalajara, Mexico. , (Mexico)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Social Neuroscience
Publisher
Informa UK (Taylor & Francis)
Publication Date
Aug 01, 2020
Volume
15
Issue
4
Pages
489–504
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/17470919.2020.1761447
PMID: 32402224
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

During the postpartum period (PP), mothers are more sensitive to sensory stimuli related to babies and less sensitive to those with sexual significance. The processing of emotional stimuli requires synchronization among different cerebral areas. This study characterized the cortical electroencephalographic (EEG) correlation in mothers from 1½ to 3 months (PP1), 4 to 5½ months (PP2) and over 6½ months, postpartum (PP3) while observing two videos: one of a baby (BV) and one with sexual content (SV). EEGs were recorded from the frontopolar, dorsolateral and parietal cortices. All three groups rated the BV as pleasant, but only PP3 reported higher sexual arousal with the SV. While watching the BV, PP1 showed a higher correlation among all cortical areas; PP2 manifested a decreased correlation between the prefrontal and parietal cortices, likely associated with the lower emotional modulation of the BV; and PP3 presented a higher synchronization among fewer cortical areas, probably related to longer maternal experience. These cortical synchronization patterns could represent adaptive mechanisms that enable the adequate processing of baby stimuli in new mothers. These data increase our knowledge of the cerebral processes associated with distinct sensitivities to the emotional stimuli that mothers experience during the PP.

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