Alternate Names : Amnesia
What can be done to prevent the symptom?
Mild memory loss comes normally with aging. Keeping the brain active may help
to preserve brain cells. Reading, singing, doing puzzles, conversing,
exercising, and eating a balanced diet stimulate blood flow and activity in the
Many cases of memory loss are due to Alzheimer's
disease. Although there are no proven methods to prevent
Alzheimer's disease, recent research findings provide some options that may
slow the onset of the disease or the progression of symptoms. These findings,
which need further study, include:
low doses of aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs),
which may work by making blood cells and vessels less sticky and improving
actively engaging in cognitive activities such as reading, which may
increase the nerve connections in the brain and delay the onset of the
taking antioxidants such as
E and selignine. In the Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study, a
1,000 IU of Vitamin E and 5 mg of selignine twice daily delayed nursing home
placement, loss of the ability to perform self-care, and severe dementia.
menopausal women, which
may delay the
onset of symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. The relationship between the hormone
estrogen and Alzheimer's
needs further investigation.
avoiding head injuries. A person should wear a seat belt at all times when
riding in a motor vehicle. Sports safety guidelines for children,
adults can be
helpful in avoiding other head injuries.
Strokes are another major cause of memory loss. Preventing or treating
high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, and alcohol abuse can lower the risk of
What are the long-term effects of the symptom?
Occasional memory lapses do not usually disrupt daily life. However, individuals with
long-term, progressive dementia will continue to lose mental abilities.
Ultimately, this makes independent living impossible. A person suffering from
the condition often requires nursing home care. The family may face
considerable financial expense in caring for the person. Extensive medical care
due to falls, trauma, infections, and
depression may also result.
What are the risks to others?
Memory loss is not contagious and poses no risk to others. If the memory loss
is caused by an infection such as AIDS, the infection may be