What are the signs that suggest my memory problems are not normal? What’s normal, what’s not and what can we do about it? Over 45 million Americans are now over the age of 65. How much memory loss is to be expected, and what can we do about improving our memory as we age? Andrew E. Budson, MD, and Maureen K. O’Connor, PSYD, answer these questions and more in their new book, Seven Steps to Managing Your Memory: What’s Normal, What’s Not, and What to Do About It.
Our memories were never meant to be perfect. They are actually constructed so we can creatively manage our future. Our memory management system is meant to flexibly manage and imagine future events; it’s the purpose of memory. To imagine a new scenario we need plasticity in the ways we remember, store and retrieve our pasts. You can update memories and when you retrieve the you will be storing them anew.
So, if you are experiencing search and retrieval issues, for example: “What the heck is that guy’s name, who I’ve know for years?” Relax and stop trying to remember their name, think about other things about the person and let you memory do its work unimpeded. Budson and O’Connor set our minds at ease and provide essential information for assessment and treatment when needed. Turns out all these times we find ourselves forgetting may really be an issue of not paying enough attention in the first place.