Motherhood is Every Woman’s Desire but There’s a Perception That Pregnancy Wears Out a Mother’s Body
Every woman desires motherhood, but there is a perception that the process of pregnancy wears down a mother’s body. Problems experienced in pregnancies that aren’t monitored well, weight gained during pregnancy that can’t be shed afterward, sagging after the enlargement of breasts, the formation of stretch marks, and loosening abdominal muscles might be factors causing this perception. Conceiving and giving birth without a break can also be challenging for the body.
However, pregnancy isn’t always a deforming process. For instance, it is known that the increase in estrogen levels during pregnancy revitalizes the skin, strengthens the hair and nails, and imparts more rounded and feminine lines due to the increase in subcutaneous fat. Changes that extend to the months after childbirth actually make mothers-to-be look more beautiful and attractive. Studies conducted on male partners have shown that the process of pregnancy doesn’t reduce their sexual desires; in fact, they take pleasure in it as it expresses their masculinity.
Stem Cells and Pregnancy
Recent stem cell and pregnancy-related research has presented findings suggesting that the pregnancy process rejuvenates and repairs the mother. This is because pregnancy offers a union that would normally be impossible: two different beings live together using the same circulatory system. This phenomenon, called parabiosis, also allows cell sharing between the two beings. Stem cells found in the tissues and blood of the developing fetus enter the mother’s circulation during this 9-month period, settling in damaged areas if any, and transform towards the cell type that needs repair. This process, especially in the liver, heart, and muscle tissues, has been found to have a restorative effect.
But doesn’t the mother already have stem cells to repair herself? The importance of a pregnancy-style parabiosis emerges here. Aging results from a decline in the number and regenerative capacity of stem cells. The second living being sharing the circulation during pregnancy is a very young fetus. Its young stem cells replace the mother’s aging cells and undertake repair tasks. Therefore, pregnancy is essentially a 9-month beauty treatment!
Even before the fetus’s stem cells were isolated in the mother, it was known that pregnancy was beneficial for some diseases. For example, a large study showed that pregnancy reduced relapse rates and central nervous system findings on MRIs in patients with multiple sclerosis. Studies conducted on various ethnic groups found that having the last child at an older age extended life expectancy.
Are the negative aesthetic effects of pregnancy correctable? Issues can easily be resolved with cosmetic interventions called Mommy Makeover. Ideally, this should be done 2.5-3 years after childbirth. Of course, if another child is planned in the near future, it might be a good idea to wait. The most common procedures in a Mommy Makeover are tummy tucks (Abdominoplasty) and breast lifts. During a tummy tuck, abdominal muscles are pleated, creating a corset-like effect from within, reducing slackness. It’s possible to get rid of some stretch marks with abdominoplasty. Fractional carbon dioxide laser treatment is used for the rest.