Memory loss causes

Everyone has experienced some sort of memory loss in their lifetime. We just can’t remember everything. But what happens when you or a loved one starts suffering from severe memory loss or amnesia? Amnesia is the term used for more severe cases of forgetfulness. There are several factors that can contribute to memory loss, ranging from age to illness and there are different types or degrees of memory loss as well.

Transient global amnesia is a temporary and complete loss of all memory. Although this condition is rare it can happen. When a person suffers from this sort of memory loss they are conscious and able to function without any other neurological impairment. These people cannot form any new memories during this episode and will often find themselves confused as to where they are or what time it is. This condition can last anywhere from 20 minutes up to 20 hours or so. Patients that have suffered from this condition are usually in between the late 40’s to 80 years old.

Antegrade amnesia occurs after a traumatic event. A person can suffer memory loss of all new and recent information but can still remember things that have taken place in distant past. This type of amnesia is common after suffering from a brain trama.

Also caused by trama to the brain is retrograde amnesia. This type of amnesia can cause a person to lose the memory of the events prior to the incident. Events leading up to the trama will often be fuzzy or unclear, sort of like a dream, or there may not be any recollection of the events at all. Often a person can start to remember the events once reminded of them but that is not always the case. For people that suffer from this form of amnesia they may not even recognize people that they have known their whole lives. This can be very disturbing to both the victim and the family or friends of the patient.

Other types of memory loss can be caused by old age which is a natural side effect of the aging process. We all have two types of memory, long term and short term memory. Typically the aging process will affect the short term memory. This includes things like forgetting where you put something, forgetting the names of someone you met recently or forgetting directions or upcoming events.

There are several diseases or medical conditions that can contribute to memory loss or have memory loss as one of the main symptoms. Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol, taking certain medications, drug abuse, depression, malnutrition, HIV, stroke and Parkinson’s Disease are just a few of the possible conditions that can lead to memory loss.

If you are the one suffering from memory loss then it is a good idea to discuss it with your doctor. It may be due to the normal aging process, but if you notice memory loss occurring more frequently or in unsafe situations then you need to see a doctor right away. There could be an underlying problem that is causing this to suddenly happen. On the other hand, if you are the loved one of someone that has started to suffer from memory loss suddenly or more often than usual, you should try to convince that person to get a doctor’s opinion on the matter.

There are some possible medications and vitamins that can be helpful once a diagnosis has been made and other serious conditions have been ruled out. Although these types of treatments may not bring all lost memories back, it can help to strengthen the part of the brain that remembers things and can possibly lessen the extent of future memory loss.

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Last updated on Jul 13th, 2009 and filed under Neurological Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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