by Dr. Harry Croft, Chief of Central Nervous System Research , Clinical Trials of Texas
Alzheimer’s Disease may be the first indication you think of when you begin suffering forgetfulness, but there are actually different causes and types of memory loss.
Here are a few:
Normal, Age-Related Memory Loss
- As we age our brain takes longer to learn new things and recall information than it did when we were younger. Just remember that getting older takes it’s toll on all parts of our body, including the brain.
- Health Issues
- Medication side effects, complications from diabetes, vascular disease (which can result in dementia) and even insomnia can all cause memory loss.
Other conditions exist which may signal more serious memory problems. Your doctor can test you to give more information about each indication. They are:
Mild Cognitive Impairment – Memory lapses, losing things often, forgetting words: these could all be signs and symptoms of Mild Cognitive Impairment or MCI. Although some people with MCI go on to develop Alzheimer’s Disease, not all do. No medications are currently approved to treat MCI, although researchers such as myself are testing investigational medications.
Dementia – This is a broad umbrella term for the loss of thinking, memory and reasoning skills that seriously affect daily life. Alzheimer’s Disease is the most prevalent type of dementia. Some of the signs and symptoms include getting lost in familiar places, repeating things over and over and neglecting personal hygiene.
Treatments – Several medications for the treatment of dementia are on the market, but there is currently no cure. If you or a loved one is experiencing memory loss, consult your doctor for a course of treatment. For additional help, we offer Free Memory Screenings and access to several clinical trials which are testing investigational medications that may not be on the market for years.