Forgetfulness is a natural part of aging; however, it is important to recognize the difference between normal forgetfulness and serious memory loss. As we grow older, we may experience problems with things like finding our keys or glasses, remembering names or certain words, and taking longer to learn new things. In most cases this is just mild forgetfulness, and there are things we can do to help sharpen our memory.
Experts recommend that activities such as taking a class, playing cards and word games, or volunteering can all help to improve mental acuity. Also it may be helpful to use memory tools such as calendars and to-do-lists, and to eat well, get plenty of rest and limit your alcohol intake. Tricks like always putting away your day-to-day items in a designated place can be helpful. As depression along with some medications and health conditions can adversely affect memory, it is important to consult with your doctor if problems continue or worsen.
The Alzheimer’s Association advises that the type of memory loss that disrupts a person’s everyday life is not normal. From their list of ten signs of Alzheimer’s disease, they state that one of the first sign of Alzheimer’s is trouble remembering newly learned information.
Further signs of serious memory problems involve difficulty with daily activities such as driving, shopping, and following conversations. A person may start having trouble following directions; be confused about time, people, and places; and become lost in familiar places. Other signs include changes in personal hygiene and attire as well as not eating well.
If you have questions regarding these and the other warning signs found on the Alzheimer’s Association website, they advise consulting your physician. They state that, “early diagnosis provides the best opportunities for treatment, support and future planning.”
This post is intended for informational purposes only. Please contact your health care provider with any questions or concerns you have regarding your health.
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