A study found that one in nine middle-aged Americans experiences memory loss. While you may think memory loss is a casual symptom of aging, hear us when we say it’s not something to be ignored.
Are you wondering “am I losing my memory?”
If you’re even questioning if you have memory loss, you should take the time to talk to a medical professional about your concerns. There are several things that can cause memory loss, read on to learn about some of the top reasons behind it.
A typical reason for memory loss is head trauma. Traumatic brain injuries are serious and require medical attention, even if there is no memory loss attached.
It’s typical to have some fuzziness after a concussion or other brain injury, but full lapses in memory should be discussed with a neurologist. More serious brain injuries can cause short-term memory loss and amnesia.
There is a normal amount of forgetfulness that comes with aging. Some people forget where they put their keys only to realize 5 minutes later that they’re in your coat pocket. Or not being able to recall an acquaintance’s name, only to remember later.
If your memory loss is minimal and doesn’t affect your productivity and safety, it’s probably nothing to worry about. If memory loss interferes with the ability to function and impacts other things like impulsivity, judgment, reasoning, and language, dementia may need to be considered.
Dementia generally gets worse over time.
Believe it or not, some side effects of medications include memory loss. If you’ve started a new medication or had an increase in dosage, it’s important to mention to your doctor that you’re having clarity and memory issues.
In addition to medication, other substances can cause memory issues. Alcohol obviously can make you forgetful when you’re drinking. It can also create memory blips for heavy drinkers that stop drinking.
Chronic Health Issues
Memory loss may not be the first sign of a chronic health issue, but it can sure be indicative that something serious may be wrong.
How is memory loss affected by chronic illnesses? Ailments like high cholesterol, vitamin deficiencies, high blood pressure, or diabetes affect the brain’s blood supply and hormone levels. Hormone imbalances can cause confusion and improper functioning, while a limited supply of blood to the brain can cause the brain to not operate at its full capacity.
If you know you have a chronic health issue, or suspect you may have one, be sure to mention the memory problems to your trusted health professional.
Emotional disorders like anxiety, depression, PTSD, and chronic stress can actually have an impact on your ability to think clearly and remember things. Long-term depression can literally change the shape, size, and function of your brain.
Not only do the disorders themself cause mental fog and memory issues, but their symptoms can worsen memory loss problems.
Even short-term stress can have an impact on memory. It may be hard to follow conversations or pay close attention to things while distracted by other thoughts and stressors.
Am I Losing My Memory?
If you’re asking yourself “am I losing my memory?”, the most important thing you can do is see a doctor. You’ll want to figure out what is behind the memory loss, and if there’s anything you can do to fix it.
Looking for other advice, information, and tips? Check out the rest of our website.