In this article we will present you with the most common causes for memory loss. There are many different symptoms ranging in severity from very mild to very extreme, and the line between clinical (as a result of brain damage) memory loss or “normal” (as a result of emotional state, stress, etc.) memory loss is not always very clear.
In some cases, it helps to take a brain scan in order for the health care professional to get an impression of the brain functioning and blood flow.
What are the most common causes for memory loss
Alzheimer’s disease – Alzheimer’s disease is the most common reason for memory loss. It is caused by plaques & tangles in the brain that prevent the brain nerve cells from proper communication and gradually deteriorate the brain cells which causes a gradual loss of memory.
Stroke – A stroke happens when there is a blockage of a blood vessel, which results in a stop of the blood supply to the brain.
Strokes often cause short term memory loss, which means that the person will be able to remember events that happened 20 years ago, but not events that happened 20 minutes ago.
Head injury – A concussion or severe injury of the head, as a result of car accident for example can injure the brain and be the cause for both short and long term memory loss. Depending on the areas in the brain that were damaged and the severity of the damage, the memory might improve over time.
Medication – There are quite some popular over the counter, as well as prescription medications which have the potential to cause memory loss: antidepressants, anti-anxiety medication, antihistamines and tranquilizers for example.
Alcohol and drug abuse – excessive alcohol and/or drugs use has been known for a long time to cause severe memory loss issues
Nutritional deficiency – The brain needs proper nutrition in order to function properly. High quality proteins and fats are very important for brain functioning and memory, as well as vitamins B1 and B12. A lack of these important nutrients can be the cause of memory loss.
Depression & stress – Depression and stress are also very common reasons for memory loss. As these emotional states are draining your energy and activate the more primal areas of the brain that are responsible for survival instincts, there is less blood and energy available for the more advanced, cognitive abilities such as memory.