Loss of memory: what can it depend on

Loss of memory: what can it depend on

There memory loss (amnesia) is a more or less frequent "forgetfulness" in people's lives. People with this condition may not be able to recall new events, recall one or more memories from the past, or experience both conditions.

Memory loss may be for a short period of time and then resolve on its own, thus revealing itself as a transient phenomenon, or it may be more persistent and, depending on the cause, worsen over time.

Causes of memory loss

Let's start by remembering that normal aging can cause a physiological deterioration of one's memory. In short, the more you get older, the more normal it becomes to have some difficulty in learning a new concept or to need more time to remember it. But aging does not lead to a dramatic one memory loss which, if it occurs, is therefore caused by other diseases.

In fact, memory loss can be favored by many causes and, to determine the correct one, the doctor will first ask whether the problem has occurred suddenly or slowly.

For example, remember that different areas of the brain support memory, and the ability of our brain to "retrieve" memories at the desired time. A problem in one of these areas can therefore lead to memory loss.

In other words, the memory loss it can result from a new brain injury, caused by or present after brain tumor, treatments such as radiation or chemotherapy, concussion or head injury. Other causes of sudden memory loss can be lack of sufficient oxygen to the brain, brain infection, surgery or severe illness, transient ischemic attack or stroke, hydrocephalus (fluid collection in the brain).

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Other causes of memory loss

Sometimes, memory loss occurs with mental health problems, such as after a major, traumatic, or stressful event, with bipolar disorder, depression or other mental health disorders, such as schizophrenia.

Remember that it is not excluded that memory loss could be a sign of dementia, whose effects also propagate on thought, language, judgment and behavior. Common types of dementia associated with memory loss are Alzheimer's and Lewy disease, fronto-temporal dementia, progressive supranuclear palsy, normal pressure hydrocephalus, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (the so-called "mad cow" ).

Other causes of memory loss are the abuse of alcohol or illegal drugs, syphilis, HIV / AIDS, excessive use of drugs, such as barbiturates, electroconvulsive therapy, uncontrolled epilepsy.

How to cure memory loss

Of course, if you find that you are affected by conditions memory loss, or if one of your loved ones is suffering from problems in remembering even the most trivial things, it is good to contact your doctor in order to make a correct diagnosis and, consequently, proceed with the most effective treatment.

However, there is also something you can do "from home", remembering that a person suffering from a condition of memory loss it needs a lot of support.

In particular, it may be useful to show the person familiar objects, the music they love, photos they are fond of, and so on, in such a way that their ability to remember objects and situations can be stimulated.

Also write to the person experiencing memory loss when they should take their medication or perform other particularly important tasks. In addition, if a person needs help with daily activities, a more extensive form of assistance may be considered.

Diagnosis of memory loss

One first diagnosis of memory loss it can be held in the doctor's office, with the doctor performing a physical exam and asking about the history and symptoms experienced. Considering that in this case many questions will be asked to family and friends, some loved ones should also be present at the appointment.

Questions about the patient's medical history could include, for example, the type of memory loss (short-term or long-term), the time pattern (how long the memory loss lasted, or whether it comes and goes periodically), any situations that have caused memory loss (such as head injuries or surgery).

Certain tests may be arranged, such as blood tests for specific suspected diseases (such as a low vitamin B12 condition or thyroid disease), a brain angiography, neuropsychological / psychometric tests, CT scan or MRI of the head.

Video: How lack of sleep could be affecting your memory. In-Depth (December 2021).