You can’t find your keys or forget a thought in the middle of a sentence.
If you're 40 or older, dementia or Alzheimer’s may have crossed your mind…
Especially if you have it in your family.
But memory loss can happen at any age and for a number of reasons.
The good news is that most memory problems are fully reversible once you pinpoint what the underlying cause is.
Be sure to talk to your doctor about concerns that are more serious.
But in many cases, one of the following 5 issues could be playing a major role in your memory problems:
# 1 Surprising Cause of Memory Loss: Sleep and specifically sleep apnea.
The average person needs 7-9 hours of sleep a night.
The average American gets 6. This is NOT ok. Somehow, as a society, we just accept the fact that we don’t sleep well or that it’s ok to have sleepness nights due to stress or other factors.
Again, this is NOT ok.
It’s time to start turning the tables and make sleep a priority as much as eating is.
A lack of sleep greatly impairs your memory. And the truly sad part is that most people don’t seek treatment for sleep.
“Imaging and behavioral studies continue to show the critical role sleep plays in learning and memory. Researchers believe that sleep affects learning and memory in two ways:
· Lack of sleep impairs a person’s ability to focus and learn efficiently
· Sleep is necessary to consolidate a memory (make it stick) so that it can be recalled in the future. “
Sleep apnea plays a big part in this and 80% of people with sleep apnea are undiagnosed.
Have you ever woken up gasping for air? Are you a big snorer? You may have sleep apnea.
A lack of sleep and sleep apnea are the most documented sources of brain shrinkage today and there is a high correlation with not enough sleep and Alzheimer’s disease.
As yourself the following questions to determine if you should seek help for your sleep problems:
Do you snore?
Are you often tired or groggy?
Have other people commented on your snoring?
Do you have high blood pressure?
Do you have a body mass index greater than 35%
Are you older than 50?
Do you have a neck size larger than 17 inches?
Are you male?
If you answered yes to 3 or more of these questions, you are at risk for sleep apnea and should get checked out.
#2 Surprising Cause of Memory Loss: Medications
Several types of drugs affect memory, according to the US Food and Drug Administration, including:
Cholesterol lowering medication
And many more.
If you are experiences memory problems, take a look in your medicine cabinet and call your doctor to find out if there are alternatives to the medications your on.
# 3 Surprising Cause of Memory Loss: Nutritional Deficiency
As people get older, they don’t absorb certain nutrients as well as they used to.
Vitamin D is one of these and should be supplemented.
Vitamin B-12 is another and should be supplemented. Vitamin b-12 is found in dairy, meat and fish.
It is the KEY component to turning the food you eat into energy and deficiencies in b-12 have been directly linked to confusion and even dementia.
# 4 Surprising Cause of Memory Loss: Anxiety, depression and stress
Anxiety, stress and depression all cause a chemical in your brain, called cortisol, to rise. Cortisol directly eats away at your memory sector in your brain, the hippocampus, causing forgetfulness.
What’s worse is that the hippocampus produces a chemical that helps fight the cortisol. But if there is too much cortisol in your brain and it is eating away at your hippocampus, then the hippocampus produces even less the cortisol ‘fighter’. It just becomes a downward spiral.
# 5 Surprising Cause of Memory Loss: Head injury.
Did you play a rough, contact sport when you were younger?
Ever get in a bad car or ski accident?
Even just 1 concussion can have a negative impact on your memory.
Most people may not even recognize that an injury from 10, 20, even 30 years ago can be the cause of their memory problems today.
Dr. Daniel Amen performs brain scans on people to determine all sorts of physical and psychological issues. After performing over 200,000 brain scans, he has found many issues with memory to come from prior head trauma.
The good news is that in almost all of these instances, including head trauma, the damage is reversible.
In my 9 Pillars of Brain Health, I guide you on a memory repairing journey that will leave you feeling like a 20 year old again.