Memory and aging
Memory is defined as “the power or process of reproducing or recalling what has been learned and retained” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary). Our ability to remember and to recall our past is what links us to our families, our friends and our community.
As we age, subtle changes in memory occur naturally as part of the aging process. However, sometimes these changes occur sooner than anticipated or faster than expected. These changes often go unnoticed, but at other times can be disturbing to ourselves or others. There are a number of things that can cause problems with memory or make normal age-related changes worse. For example, sometimes changes in memory might be due to a medication side effect or an existing or developing health problem, such as depression, anxiety, sleep problems, heart disease, infections in the brain, brain tumor, blood clots, head injury, thyroid disease, dehydration, or vitamin deficiency. If this is the case, identifying and treating the condition can improve your memory.
However, when memory loss prevents us from performing daily tasks and our accustomed roles in life, it becomes a health concern that needs further evaluation by healthcare professionals.