3 Overlooked Reasons for Your Bad Memory

You walk from one room to another in your home and when you get there, you forget why you made the trip in the first place. It's extremely frustrating and something that happens to all of us at one time or another. Sometimes it's just a fluke, and other times it's something more serious. Your memory is without a doubt going to fail you at times. Most people simply use an excuse of age, stress, emotional problems, or being preoccupied with other things for the reason behind their bad memory.

While estimates show that about 20% of the population over the age of 70 suffer from some level of forgetfulness either due to dementia or Alzheimer's, what about the people that don't have those conditions? Likewise, what about those of you that haven't reached that age yet? There are other reasons why you may have trouble remembering beyond what you think of as the most common ones. Take a look at some of the overlooked reasons for bad memory to determine if you fall into any of these categories. You may be able to improve your mind by making some quick changes following the tips that are given that have proven to provide results.

Your Poor Posture is Causing Memory Loss

You've heard it from the time you were very little; "Sit up straight!" It could have been a parent, grandparent, teacher, or another adult that saw you slouching down in your seat. When you're little, you don't think much about your spine and how it is supposed to be in a perfectly straight position at all times. Kids sit however they feel the most comfortable without much consideration for their health. There are a plethora of health conditions that can arise as a result of poor posture including back pain. However, what you may not have thought of before is how sitting, standing, or walking in bad form can have a negative impact on your cognition as well.

Cognition is the term used to describe mental processes involving learning, understanding, and acquiring knowledge. Part of that is your memory. Researchers suggest that when your body isn't in proper alignment, your brain isn't getting the oxygen and blood flow that it could potentially be receiving if it were. The numbers are a bit staggering really with some saying that you could increase the oxygen and blood that your brain gets by up to 40% simply by improving your posture.

Your brain needs the proper amount of oxygen and blood flow in order to perform optimally. So, you can see how sitting or standing could potentially affect your memory. Beyond how bad your memory can be from poor posture, sitting in a slumped over position can also affect the types of memories that you are able to recall. When you sit up straight you think of positive memories. When you are slumped over, you have a better chance of recalling negative things that have happened.

There has been plenty of research done to show that an improvement in posture can create improvements in other areas of your life including having more self-esteem, a better mood, and less fatigue. With all the benefits associated with having a good posture, there is no reason to skip over working to ensure your spine and neck are in proper alignment at all times.

Can Pain Have a Negative Impact on Your Memory?

There is no question that if you are dealing with any type of pain, no matter how moderate or severe it is, it can be a distraction. Think about how you feel trying to get through your day when you back is bothering you. First of all, know that you aren't alone in dealing with back pain. Up to 80% of the world's population is going to suffer from some sort of back pain throughout the course of their lifetime.

There are other types of chronic pain that don't always go away even with treatment, however. Researchers wanted to determine if there were any other effects that dealing with chronic pain could have on the body including brain functioning. One of the studies that were done was on a group of nearly 22,000 people ages 40 years and older dealing with osteoarthritis, the second leading common cause of chronic pain. After all studies and research were completed there was evidence to prove that people suffering from joint pain had a strong association with memory loss as well.

In another study, patients that were elderly and had chronic pain in the moderate to the severe range were tested on their cognitive ability over the course of 12 years. The end results showed that there was an increase in memory decline for those with pain versus those that weren't suffering. Additionally, those with pain were more likely to develop dementia proving once again that there is a direct relationship between brain functioning and pain.

Thyroid Functioning and Memory Issues

If you know without question that you're not suffering from Alzheimer's or dementia and you have worked on correcting your posture and alleviating pain, yet you still have memory problems, it could be your thyroid.

Your thyroid is responsible for several different body functions including regulating development and growth as well as producing hormones. When your thyroid isn't working as it should, it could be two different problems:

Hypothyroidism - when there aren't enough thyroid hormones being made.

Hyperthyroidism - when you're the body is making more hormones in the thyroid then what it needs.

Depending on which issue you are dealing with, you could have a plethora of different symptoms including weight gain or loss, a rapid heartbeat, hair loss, and fatigue. Either one of the conditions can cause you to suffer from symptoms that are cognitive in nature and closely resemble the same symptoms as a patient with dementia including memory loss.

Depending on which issue you are dealing with, you could have a plethora of different symptoms including weight gain or loss, a rapid heartbeat, hair loss, and fatigue. Either one of the conditions can cause you to suffer from symptoms that are cognitive in nature and closely resemble the same symptoms as a patient with dementia including memory loss.

Improving Cognitive Functioning and Memory with Thyroid Care

Thankfully, as long as you haven't suffered permanent memory loss or brain damage, you do have treatment options and ways of improving your cognitive functioning. The first step is determining exactly what is causing your decline in cognitive functioning. If it is due to a thyroid issue, for example, there are supplemental thyroid therapies out there that can help regulate this part of the body so that it is working the way it is supposed to be.

When you aren't having enough hormones produced in a hypothyroidism diagnosis, there is a replacement treatment that can normalize and stimulate the functioning once again. The same idea for hyperthyroidism, except for experts are going to be looking at ways of decreasing hormones. Each of these treatments is going to have to be supervised by a medical doctor. Every person that gets treatment for a thyroid issue has to have a plan that is extremely personalized to meet their specific needs.

Dealing with Chronic Pain Issues First

When chronic pain is what is leading to your memory issues, there are a plethora of options for treating it. Of course, the traditional method is potentially dangerous narcotic pain medications and over-the-counter drugs. With an opioid epidemic in full swing across the country, many doctors are refraining from prescribing painkillers. Patients are also trying to avoid them to stay away from the risk of addiction and the undesirable side effects that go along with them. There are other non conventional, holistic, natural ways for treating pain that are becoming increasingly popular that you may want to try out including:

   ●    Acupuncture
   ●    Massage
   ●    Chiropractic care
   ●    Hypnosis
   ●    Meditation
   ●    Yoga
   ●    Diet-based treatments
   ●    Essential oils
   ●    Physical therapy
   ●    Biofeedback
   ●    Supplements
   ●   And many more

With evidence proving that chronic pain sufferers are likely to develop issues with cognitive functioning and memory loss, you need to treat the underlying issue first. By finding and effective way to rid your body of the pain, the memory and brain functioning that was suffering should also see benefits.

Chiropractic Care for Posture Correction

Finally, when your poor posture is an issue, it is recommended that you go to a chiropractic clinic like Better Health Chiropractic in Anchorage or one that’s near you to help with correcting it. While you may be able to mack some minor changes to your posture through self-awareness and corrections, these professionals can get to the root of the problem a lot more quickly.

Chiropractors know that your spine is a major part of the central nervous system for the body's functioning. If the spine is out of alignment, the rest of the body is going to have issues with regular operations including cognitive functioning and memory. Your chiropractor can take a look at your neck and spine and see if there are any vertebra out of alignment and make the necessary adjustments.

He or she can also give you exercises and advice to follow for ways to correct your posture at home in between visits. There are over 35 million people visiting chiropractors every single year for various health issues, and that's because what these professionals are doing actually works. It's a non-invasive, drug-free, and safe choice when it comes to an overall better health and well- being when you want to stay away from more conventional forms of treatment.

About Dr. Brent Wells

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Dr. Brent Wells is a graduate of the University of Nevada where he earned his bachelor's of science degree before moving on to complete his doctorate from Western States Chiropractic College. He founded Better Health Chiropractic & Physical Rehab in Alaska in 1998.

He became passionate about being in the chiropractic field after his own experiences with hurried, unprofessional healthcare providers. The goal for Dr. Wells is to treat his patients with care and compassion while providing them with a better quality of life through his professional treatment.

Dr. Wells is a member of the American Chiropractic Association and the American Academy of Spine Physicians. He continues his education to remain active and updated in all studies related to neurology, physical rehab, biomechanics, spine conditions, brain injury trauma, and more.

References

Abramson, C. I. (n.d.). "What is Cognition?". Retrieved November 13, 2018, from MDPI: https://www.mdpi.com/journal/behavsci/special_issues/cognition
Back Pain Facts and Statistics. (n.d.). Retrieved September 11, 2018, from American Chiropractic Association: https://www.acatoday.org/Patients/Health-Wellness-Information/Back-Pain-Facts-and-Statistics

Berber, M. E. (2018, January 23). What is Thyroid Hormone Replacement Therapy? Retrieved November 13, 2018, from Endocrineweb: https://www.endocrineweb.com/conditions/hypothyroidism/what-thyroid-hormone-replacement-therapy

Do Memory Problems Always Mean Alzheimer's Disease? (2018, January 24). Retrieved November 13, 2018, from National Institue on Aging: https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/do-memory-problems-always-mean-alzheimers-disease

Innes, K., & Sambamoorthi, U. (2018, July 1). The Association of Perceived Memory Loss with Osteoarthritis and Related Joint Pain in a Large Appalachian Population. Retrieved November 13, 2018, from US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28525629

Key Facts About the Chiropractic Profession. (n.d.). Retrieved August 7, 2018, from American Chiropractic Association: https://www.acatoday.org/Patients/Why-Choose-Chiropractic/Key-Facts

Ouchi, Y., Okada, H., Yoshikawa, E., Futatsubashi, M., & Nobezawa, S. (2001, May). Absolute Changes in Regional Cerebral Blood Flow in Association with Upright Posture in Humans: An Orthostatic PET Study. Retrieved November 13, 2018, from The Journal of Nuclear Medicine: http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.583.6478&rep=rep1&type=pdf

Swierzewski, I. M. (2008, December 28). Memory Problems. Retrieved November 13, 2018, from Health Communities: http://www.healthcommunities.com/memory-problems/overview-of-memory-loss.shtml

The Use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine in the United States. (n.d.). Retrieved September 11, 2018, from National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health: https://nccih.nih.gov/research/statistics/2007/camsurvey_fs1.htm

Thyroid Diseases. (2018, April 16). Retrieved November 13, 2018, from MedlinePlus: https://medlineplus.gov/thyroiddiseases.html

What You Need To Know About The Thyroid! (n.d.). Retrieved November 13, 2018, from American Thyroid Association: https://www.thyroid.org/thyroid-information/

Whitlock, E., Diaz-Ramirez, L., Glymour, M., Boscardin, W., Covinsky, K., & Smith, A. (2017, August 1). Association Between Persistent Pain and Memory Decline and Dementia in a Longitudinal Cohort of Elders. Retrieved November 13, 2018, from US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28586818

Wilkes, C., Kydd, R., Sagar, M., & Broadbent, E. (2017, March). Upright posture improves affect and fatigue in people with depressive symptoms. Retrieved November 5, 2018, from US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27494342

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