May 19th, 2024

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Forgetfulness can be precipitated by:


Addiction Alcohol Anxiety Depression Grief Heart Disease Loneliness Medications Nutrition Stroke


man looking out window

Gretchen Heuring

Depression Can Cause Memory Loss

By | 07.01.2014


Memory loss can be caused by depression. It is as though a cloud of sadness filters out the will to remember even the smallest things. The US National Institutes of Mental Health estimates that one in ten adults suffer from major depression for at least one period of their lives.


As we grow older, there are new causes for sadness. We have losses. Some seem small, we lose our hair or our hair color. Perhaps we lose teeth. Hearing and eyesight are less acute. Our skin sags here and there. Our culture teaches that we have lost our allure. Strangers don't smile or even notice as we pass by. Much has been written about how older people feel they have "disappeared." Sadness is part of adjustment to loss and can lead to true depression.


More serious changes often occur in later life. Chronic diseases emerge such as heart disease, arthritis amd hearing or vision loss. These can change how we move about, eat, sleep or generally enjoy life. It's understandable that one or more of these problems might trigger a depression.


Depression is a normal response to changes we do not like. Eventually, we move on to find hope and purpose again and leave our sadness behind. Some people are not able to easily adapt and depression can become an illness of it's own.


Sadness Due To Loss Is Normal

Sadness over loss and some associated forgetfulness is a normal part of the healing and adjustment process. It's important to be patient, loving and watchful when an older person has suffered loss. Loss of a loved one, a friend or a pet, can lead to deep grief and feelings of despair.


The sad person will dwell on memories for awhile and can have difficulty concentrating on immediate or current situations. Healing can take a few months and may not resolve for a year or even longer. Recovery is different for everyone who grieves. It may seem that your older person is absent from your life for awhile. If you miss her, be sure to let her know. Feeling valued is strong medecine.


There are some things that help resolve the normal depression response to changes. These include getting outside in the fresh air and sunshine, laughter for any reason, drinking plenty of fresh water, eating regularly and right, and mixing with other people.


The Healing Process

Mindfulness truly helps healing from depression. Self-awareness might begin with a change in season or temperature, the softness of a pet's fur, or the laughter of a baby. Ask your person how these things feel to her. She may struggle to respond. Be patient and you could be able to witness some of her discovery.


We have different feelings and interests, so identifying physical, emotional, mental and spritual experience is certainly valuable. We humans respond to personal energy, so your person could indeed respond to annoyance or anger on the part of others. She might seem to "break out of it" and say something ugly and to the point. Rather than allow this to happen, try to maintain a flow of positive energy when you are with her. Talk about your good moments and memories, play music, perhaps a puzzle or a short game.


Remember that this is not about you. If you and your person have unresolved problems, try hard to set them aside and concentrate on the present. She needs to get well. Try to remember that you are not alone, love is everywhere.






Lonely woman in bed

Gretchen Heuring

Loneliness and Memory Loss

By 06.10.2014


Everyone knows how it feels to be lonely, but ongoing loneliness heralds a deep despair and memories are lost in the darkness. Researchers have been studying the effects of loneliness and, somehow, the results are not surprising. There is a loss of connection and belonging. Read more.



woman taking test

A New Test For Alzheimer's You Can Take At Home


Yes, the rumors are true. There is a new test for Alzheimer's Disease that you can get online and take at home. Researchers at Ohio State University have developed the test. It's called SAGE (Self-Administered Gerocognitive Examination).


As with all new things, there is a caution to consider. If the test results suggest cognitive impairment, it might not mean you have Alzheimer's. There could be another cause such as depression or hidden heart disease. So if, when you take the test, indications are revealed, for goodness sake head for you doctor!




Man With Puzzle

Gretchen Heuring

Concentration and Memory




Think about "concentration" and "memory" as two different things like your back and your legs. You need both your back and your legs to be strong so they can work together to lift heavy things. Exercises you would choose for strengthening your back are quite different from those you would choose to develop strong legs.


Concentration means you are focusing on a particular activity or problem. Memory is the ability to remember experiences, information or people. Good concentration really helps memory so improving both is equally important. Learn more about ways to improve both:





opening cupboard

Gretchen Heuring

Is It Really Memory Loss

By | 01.25.2010

Do you have walk into another room and forget while you are there? Or open a cupboard and then just plain forget why you did that? Well stop worrying right now. It's most likely the worry that is causing your problem. Here's why.