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Forgetfulness: Happening more?

Tying a string around your finger, as a reminder, is an ancient belief.

Oops. Did you again forget to bring ice to the party or were you so preoccupied with other things that you arrived without the ice? You begin to ask yourself “Am I forgetting more or less?” “Are the things I forget important matters or insignificant details? “  “Are family and friends noticing my forgetfulness.”

Donde deje mis lentes? : el cómo, cuándo y por qué de la pérdida normal de la memoria
Martha Weinman Lear ; traducción, Lina Patricia Bojanini G.
Bogotá : Grupo Editorial Norma, 2008.
In Spanish.
     
Reading our lives : the poetics of growing old
William L. Randall, A. Elizabeth McKim.
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2008.
"Against the background of Socrates' insight that the unexamined life is not worth living, Reading Our Lives: The Poetics of Growing Old investigates the often overlooked inside dimensions of aging. Despite popular portrayals of mid- and later life as entailing inevitable decline, this book looks at aging as, potentially, a process of poiesis: a creative endeavor of fashioning meaning from the ever-accumulating texts - memories and reflections - that constitute our inner worlds. At its center is the conviction that although we are constantly reading our lives to some degree anyway, doing so in a mindful manner is critical to our development in the second half of life." "Drawing on research in numerous disciplines affected by the so-called narrative turn - including cognitive psychology, neuroscience, and the psychology of aging - authors Randall and McKim articulate a vision of aging that promises to accommodate such time-honored concepts as wisdom and spirituality: one that understands aging as a matter not merely of getting old but of consciously growing old."--BOOK JACKET.
     
Where did I leave my glasses? : the what, when, and why of normal memory loss
by Martha Weinman Lear.
Waterville, Me. : Thorndike Press, c2008.
You forget people's names, or what you were about to say, or why you went into the kitchen. And you worry: Could this mean I am losing my memory? Join the crowd. There are seventy-six million baby boomers in the country, and memory loss is their number one concern. The Worried Well, specialists call them. They don't know that most memory lapses that begin in middle age are universal and normal. Now journalist Martha Weinman Lear explores this kind of forget-fulness - why it happens and what can be done about it. Book jacket.
     
Where did I leave my glasses? : the what, when, and why of normal memory loss
Martha Weinman Lear.
New York : Wellness Central, 2008.
     
Age-proof your mind : detect, delay, and prevent memory loss--before it's too late
Zaldy S. Tan.
New York : Warner Books, 2005.
"Age-Proof Your Mind" provides a comprehensive method for readers to test their memory. The groundbreaking Memory Stress Test can help readers detect memory problems before it's too late.
     
Older and wiser : how to maintain peak mental ability for as long as you live
Richard M. Restak.
New York : Simon & Schuster, c1997.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 247-262) and index.
     

Sometimes people become forgetful because they are overloaded or preoccupied with too many task or ideas.  Other times there are medical reasons for forgetfulness There are medical reasons for forgetfulness ranging from migraine headaches, being perimenopausal or menopausal, hypothyroidism, Alzheimer's, head injury, alcoholism; depression or even gender. Everyone is different. While some people have an amazing ability for recall and never seem to forget anything, others seem not to remember what day of the week it is.

To improve forgetfulness try playing brain and memory games or working puzzles. These are fun; yet provide exercise for the mind’s memory and concentration.  Seek medical advice if conditions persist or worsen. Diet and exercise may also aid forgetfulness. Eating blueberries, apples and spinach are suggested boosters for memory health. Certain vitamins and herbs also have been related to aiding memory.

I never heard of an old man forgetting where he had buried his money! Old people remember what interests them:the dates fixed for their lawsuits, and the names of their debtors and creditors.”

Marcus Tullius Cicero

Forgetting is common, so rely on numerous methods to help remember important information.  Jotting notes in a daily planner or scheduling important events in an electronic calendar provides a security that forgetting does not become habit forming.

It may be difficult to determine if your forgetfulness is absentmindedness or something more serious.  Those concerned can consult their medical professional.  Tests can be run to determine a person’s mental abilities and recommendations provided to help you maintain your memory.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff