Generally when we speak about parenting, it’s all about changes that happen in mom. But science says that Man’s body and brain too undergo changes with the arrival of new born baby. Hormonal changes does not just affect women, but it affects men too. Dropping testosterone levels, rising prolactin and oxytocin level transforms a man into a DAD.
Several studies has been carried out in past that indicated of the role fathers play in helping kids grow up as responsible citizens without much behavioral and psychological problems, but its only off late studies have started focusing on the brain level changes associated with fatherhood.
Dads Gain Pregnancy Weight
Study carried out in 2009 found that men reportedly gain on an average of 6 Kg during their partner’s pregnancy. This is called sympathetic pregnancy symptom and is called as ‘couvade’. Symptoms can include even nausea, headache, irritability, restlessness, backache, colds, and nervousness.
The ‘love hormone’ Oxytocin peaks up
In fathers “love hormone” level increases when they engage with their little one or get on with them in plays. That means, more the father gets involved in baby plays, more would be the level of love hormone. Another study revealed that sniffing a dose of the oxytocin makes fathers more engaged with their kids. So soon we will see oxytocin spray among Father’s Day gift.
Dip in testosterone levels
The level of Testosterone falls by about 40% in the first month of parenthood. Researchers measured the volume of testosterone in new fathers who were responsible towards their kids and who were indifferent. What they found was that new fathers who were responsible had lower Testosterone Levels compared to men who were indifferent to kids had higher testosterone levels.
Level of Prolactin increases
New dads experience on an average 20% rise in their prolactin levels in the first month and it remains elevated for many more months. While in women this hormone is associated with promoting feeding, in dads it help in promoting the development of paternal behaviors.
Dads Brain too changes
It’s not only mothers brain that changes with coming in of baby, but fathers too. Unlike mother, father’s brain adapt to parenting through direct involvement with child. So more the father is engaged in raising the child, more will be this transformation. Research says Men even grow new, additional neurons after becoming fathers.