Gone – flat out, unequivocally GONE. If you’re like me, you’re constantly looking up the definition of Alzheimer’s disease, brain tumors, and concussion caused by some random bump on the head you didn’t even know you got.
And if you’re like me, you’re also of the Baby Boomer generation where memory loss is now epidemic. Consider:1 in 8 boomers over the age of 60 reports they experience memory loss, in the largest self-respondent survey of its kind.
I’m not quite over 60 (I’ll take every hour, day, month I can get) but I constantly fret, worry, and stew over what is definitely a dwindling sense of recall. Example: you know, that word, the one that is right on the tip of my tongue, or I could have sworn I put my keys right here on the kitchen table, or (you fill in the blank).
Compounding this memory game is menopause. I was actually relieved to learn that many of my memory symptoms are the result of my body’s dwindling hormones. A recent study : “concludes that the memory problems experienced by women in their 40s and 50s as they approach and go through menopause are undeniable.”
Want to know more? Here is yet another great resource for all my fellow menopausal memory-loss mamas:
The good news about losing at word games and having to walk everywhere because you can’t find your keys is, there’s hope! There are definite strategies you can employ to help sharpen that gray-matter. Here are a few:
- Exercise: Hide your car keys on purpose and get that body moving through walking, biking, running, swimming, or whatever your sport of choice might be
- Eat like Popeye (remember him?): In addition to spinach, eat a diet full of fruits and vegetables of all sizes, shapes and colors
- Engage in mental workouts: Say what? Think: crossword puzzles, Sudoku, the classics (as in books), and whatever mental gymnastics get your wheels turning and burning.
- Get good sleep: Get enough, good quality sleep with quality as the operative word.
- Drink red wine: Now this one is right up my alley, but of course, the key to success is moderation.
- Do only one thing at a time: One of the worst contributions of this technological age is the temptation to multitask. Simply put – DON’T!
- Find tricks of the trade: Circumvent those times when you know your memory is going to hiccup: leave index cards around so you always have something to write on, carry around a small notebook, use the note function in your smart phone or tablet, and whatever you do, make sure to always carry a pen with you. .
So, here’s the bottom line: you’re not alone, it’s perfectly normal, and …. what was it we were talking about again??