Asked for female, 19 years old from North Tripura
Age related memory loss
As everyone gets older it becomes more difficult to remember things, especially if one is getting over 60 years of age. This is because like other parts of the body, the brain also changes with age. How? Here’s how.
Parts of the brain that handle cognitive functions, learning, memory, and planning shrink with age.
Neurons (nerve cells) in the brain stop communicating efficiently. This is of course a gradual process.
Arteries narrow with age and new blood vessels stop forming, so less blood reaches the brain thus slowing down its activity.
Plaques may form that block communication between the neurons.
Inflammation in the brain increases.
Damage by free radicals increase as the brain ages.
However, recent studies have indicated that the aging brain actually improves in certain areas such as vocabulary and other verbal forms. Another interesting finding is that the brain continues to develop new neurons even late in life. So essential communications can still be maintained through these neurons.
Mild cognitive impairment
Other common causes of memory loss include –
Depression: Some people with depression may have slowed down thinking and mental abilities. Other symptoms could be –
Low mood most of the time, irritability
Difficulty with affection
Loss of interest in life, poor motivation, sadness, guilt
Medication: Certain medication too could cause memory loss or forgetfulness. This condition however improves once the medication is stopped.
Anti-anxiety drugs – Alprazolam, diazepam, temazepam, chlordiazepoxide, etc.
Cholesterol lowering drugs (Statins) – Atorvastatin, lovastatin, fluvastatin, etc.
Antiseizure drugs – Acetazolamide, carbamazepine, ezogabine, gabapentin, etc.
Antidepressants – Amitriptyline, clomipramine, doxepin, imipramine, etc.
Painkillers – Fentanyl, hydrocodone, morphine, oxycodone, etc.
Hypertension drugs – Beta blockers such as atenolol, carvedilol, metoprolol, propranolol, etc.
Sleeping aids – Eszopiclone, zaleplon, etc.
Dopamine agonists to treat Parkinson’s disease, certain pituitary tumors, and sometimes restless legs syndrome.
Antihistamines – Brompheniramine, carbinoxamine, chlorpheniramine, clemastine, etc.
Incontinence drugs – Oxybutynin (Oxytrol), darifenacin, etc.
Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions can directly affect the way brain functions. Some of these conditions are –
Stress and anxiety
Underactive thyroid, in which the thyroid gland does not produce sufficient hormones
Subarachnoid haemorrhage, that is, bleeding in the brain
Vitamin B1 or thiamine deficiency
Transient global amnesia in which there is a sudden episode of memory loss that cannot be recalled afterwards
Dementia and the various types of dementia
Dementia is perhaps the most severe of the memory problems that affects your daily life. It usually occurs in people who are over 65 years of age. Dementia is actually not a disease but a syndrome that consists of loss of functions involving memory, thinking speed and reasoning. Symptoms of dementia include –
Forgetting recent events
Difficulty remembering names and places
Asking questions repetitively
Becoming confused in unfamiliar environments
Difficulty planning and organizing
Difficulty in verbal skills
Changes in personality and mood
Dementia can be caused by all the above mentioned causes plus 60 different illness, but the primary and most common cause is the Alzheimer’s disease which account for 50 to 60 percent of dementia cases.
I hope this helps.