During your golden years, you might be concerned about forgetting things too often. You might have forgotten an appointment, misplaced things, or don’t remember where you parked your car. And you start to wonder if your memory is normal or are these signs of Alzheimer’s disease? Should you start seeking memory care services?
Mild signs of forgetfulness are usually normal as you age. Having a mild memory loss doesn’t always mean you’re going to develop Alzheimer’s disease. Read on to find out what is considered normal forgetfulness and what’s not.
It Might be a Case of Absentmindedness
You forgot where you place your bag or when was the last time you took your medicine. Sometimes, scenarios like these happen because you weren’t paying attention to the things you were doing. Maybe you were thinking about other stuff so your mind didn’t register where you placed your bag. Forgetfulness need not necessarily be a sign of Alzheimer’s disease, it could be a case of absentmindedness.
It Might be a Memory Block
You might have experienced a situation where your friend asked you a question and you know you have the answer. However, you just can’t recall what it is. Blocking occurs when you cannot recall a memory temporarily. In some cases, you could end up retrieving the wrong memory instead.
Memory blocks are seen as common signs of aging. It could be one of the reasons why you cannot remember the name of a relative or place you have been to. Studies have also revealed you can usually recall your blocked memories within a minute. You might just be experiencing a temporary memory block if you have trouble recalling something from the past.
It Could be Misattribution
Misattribution might become common as you age. You might remember something accurately but forget some details like the people involved. This could happen because your concentration abilities are likely to decline with age, and you face more difficulties when it comes to processing large amounts of information.
Misattribution can also occur to your memories. You might feel that your idea is original but forgot that it actually came from something or someone you had met in the past. This could happen because your ability to absorb details tends to decline with age. You might not remember an old memory as well as you did before.
It Could be Transcient Memory
If you don’t use a memory often enough, you might just lose it. Certain events and facts can fade away from our memory as time passes, and this is normal. This may seem like a sign of memory loss but could be the case where your brain is clearing up space. Memories that you often recall are more likely to stay with you, the opposite happens for the ones you don’t.
Consult a Doctor
It is always wise to seek medical help when you are in doubt. You might want to schedule an appointment with your doctor if you experience the following:
- Asking the same question repeatedly
- Losing your sense of direction in familiar places
- Have difficulties remembering time, people and places
- Forgot how to drive or have trouble following recipes
Your doctor can perform an assessment to determine the cause of your problem. And you’ll know the next steps to take after identifying the source of your memory problem.