Occasional forgetfulness is a natural part of the aging process. As we get older, you may forget where you placed your keys or what you went into the kitchen for. If memory issues have begun to prevent you from living a full, typical life, then it could be something more. Dementia, changes in medication, head injury, and other diseases of the brain can all cause memory problems. Is your forgetfulness becoming worrisome? We have some clues that will help you take the right steps and get the appropriate diagnosis and care.
Age-Related Memory Loss
Aging brings many changes to our bodies. We can see the obvious ones from the outside, but there are also changes going on inside. The brain shrinks as age increases, making the body more susceptible to certain health conditions, and causing the natural decline in memory. Forgetting things from time to time and making a wrong decision here and there do not interfere with daily life. Age-related memory loss is infrequent and still allows you to carry on your regular life duties.
Medical Condition-Related Memory Loss
Certain medical conditions can cause lasting memory loss that may or may not prevent you from performing everyday tasks or even living independently. Some of the conditions may go away once the condition is identified and treated. Others can be treated but may be a part of a progressive indication that requires long term interventions.
Medical conditions that should go away once treated include tumors, blood clots, infections in the brain, thyroid, liver, or kidney disorders, alcoholism, head injury, and side effects from medication.
Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia affect memory, reasoning, judgment, and other skills. They typically begin gradually and worsen over time. Asking the same question repeatedly, placing items in inappropriate places (wallet in the freezer), getting lost while walking or driving, and mood or behavior changes without apparent reason are a few examples. Treatment is focused on symptom management since there is currently no cure.
Evolution Research Group and Memory Loss
If memory issues are causing concern in your life, talk to your doctor. It is better to be checked out, than to not and miss valuable early interventions.
Evolution Research Group is a group of clinical research sites committed to bringing new options for memory-related and other medical conditions. Volunteers participating in clinical research help make these new options available. To find out more about upcoming studies at any of our nine locations, click this link, or you can fill out an online application, and your local site will contact you.