Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Temper Tantrums during Pregnancy... I thought I was the only one

After reading this article...

According to a new study anger can affect the development of babies' hearts in the wombs.

Researchers say angry behaviour even things such as door slamming, shouting loudly and even binge-eating whilst pregnant can affect the development of babies’ hearts.

Infants born to mothers more prone to these impulsive and aggressive acts had less variation in their heart rates after birth, the research found. Variation in heart rate is thought to be healthy because it indicates the body is flexible and adaptable to change. For example, different breathing patterns should affect the heart rate.

But if the heart does not adapt to change it is more at risk of disease and infection. It is already known that adults who have a lower variation in heart rate are more likely to develop heart problems.

Researchers also say the hormonal changes in the body which trigger aggressive behaviour may pass through the placenta to the unborn baby, and could have an influence on the way cells develop. And so staying relaxed and calm whilst pregnant is important – what a better excuse for a spa day!!

The study, led by researchers from the University of Sussex, recruited 49 pregnant women aged between 22 and 39 from childbirth classes. The volunteers were tested to see how likely they were to develop ‘impulsive, uncontrollable bouts of temper’. The women were asked in interviews to describe how they normally dealt with anger and their brain activity was monitored to see how they responded to certain sounds and images designed to prompt a negative reaction. They found 22 women fitted into the ‘angry’ category, nearly half of the volunteer group.

The researchers said this was a higher proportion than would be expected in the general population, attributing this to the fact that the study had been advertised as investigating the effects of temper on foetal hearts and attracted volunteers concerned about their anger.

After the women gave birth, the electrical activity of the babies’ hearts was measured using an electrocardiogram, or ECG. They found newborns whose mothers were in the angry group had a lower variation in their heart rate.


I realize since we can't really control these kind of emotional outburst, it is important that we do when we're pregnant... I've talked to my husband about this, it really helps if we do.


  1. have just known about this
    thanks for sharing
    happy 2010! :)

  2. Anger is negative energy and any negative energy will have an impact on the fetus. We must be very aware of our thoughts, words and actions for all of our energy affects the unborn child.

  3. congratulations and stay positive! god bless you and your baby