Which doctor to go to for forgetfulness?

Memory problems, such as some degree of forgetfulness, and a modest decline in other thinking skills are a fairly common part of aging. However, there is a difference between normal changes in memory and memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders. And some memory problems are the result of treatable conditions.

Forgetfulness and aging

Age-related forgetfulness does not prevent you from living a beautiful and productive life. For example, you may sometimes forget a person’s name but remember it later in the day. Sometimes you may look for your glasses in the wrong place or you may need to make lists more often than in the past to remember things you need to do. These changes in memory are usually manageable and do not impair your ability to work, live independently, or lead a social life.

forgetfulness and dementia

The word “dementia” is the umbrella term used to describe a range of symptoms, including impairment in memory, reasoning, judgment, language, and other thinking skills. Dementia usually begins gradually, worsens over time, and impairs a person’s abilities at work, social interaction, and relationships. Oftentimes, this type of forgetfulness/memory loss that disrupts your life is one of the first and more recognized symptoms of dementia.

Other early symptoms of dementia may include:

  • Asking the same questions over and over
  • Forgetting common words while speaking
  • Confusing words (e.g. “bed” instead of “table”)
  • Making longer sentences than normal when describing something, mixing it up
  • placing items in inappropriate places, such as putting a wallet in a kitchen drawer
  • Getting lost walking or driving in a familiar area
  • Changes in mood or behavior for no apparent reason
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Diseases that cause progressive damage to the brain and ultimately result in dementia include:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Vascular dementia
  • Frontotemporal demans
  • Left cisimcikli demans

The disease process (pathology) of each of these conditions is slightly different. Memory impairment is not always the first sign, and the type of memory problems can vary. It’s also possible to have more than one type of dementia, known as mixed dementia.

Forgetfulness and mild cognitive impairment

Mild cognitive impairment is more serious than age-related forgetfulness and includes a notable decline in at least one area of ​​thinking skills, such as memory. But having mild cognitive impairment does not prevent you from performing daily tasks and being socially engaged.

Researchers and doctors are still learning new things about mild cognitive impairment. For many people, this condition eventually progresses to dementia due to Alzheimer’s disease or another disorder that causes dementia. Other people’s memory loss does not progress much and they do not develop many of the symptoms associated with dementia.

Reversible causes of forgetfulness

Although many medical problems can cause forgetfulness or dementia-like symptoms, most of these conditions are treatable. In such circumstances, your doctor may screen you for conditions that cause reversible memory impairment.

Possible causes of reversible memory loss include:

  • Medications: Some medications or combinations of medications can cause forgetfulness or confusion.
  • Minor head injury or injury: Head injury from a fall or accident can cause memory problems—even if you don’t lose consciousness.
  • Emotional disorders: Stress, anxiety or depression can cause forgetfulness, confusion, difficulty concentrating and other problems that disrupt daily activities.
  • Alcoholism (alcohol addiction): Chronic alcoholism can severely impair mental abilities. Alcohol can also interact with medications, causing memory loss.
  • Vitamin B-12 deficiency: Vitamin B-12 helps maintain healthy nerve cells and red blood cells. Vitamin B-12 deficiency, which is common in older adults, can cause memory problems.
  • Hypothyroidism: Underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) can cause forgetfulness and other thinking problems.
  • Brain diseases: A tumor or infection in the brain can cause memory problems or other dementia-like symptoms.
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When to see a doctor for forgetfulness?

If you are concerned about forgetfulness, it is important to see your doctor. Because there are various tests to determine the degree of forgetfulness and to diagnose the cause. When you see your doctor for forgetfulness, he will likely ask you questions. It will also be good to have a family member or friend with you, who will answer some questions based on your observations under the doctor’s control.

Questions your doctor will ask may include:

  • When did your memory problems start?
  • What medications, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, and supplements, are you taking and in what doses?
  • Have you started a new medication recently?
  • What jobs do you have trouble doing?
  • What have you done to deal with memory problems?
  • How much alcohol do you drink?
  • Have you recently been in an accident, fell or injured your head?
  • Have you been sick recently?
  • Do you feel sad, depressed or anxious?
  • Have you experienced a major loss, major change, or stressful event in your life recently?

In addition to a general physical exam, your doctor will likely run question-and-answer tests to assess your memory and other thinking skills . Your doctor may also order blood tests and brain imaging tests, which can help identify reversible causes of memory problems and dementia-like symptoms.

Which doctor should I go to for forgetfulness?

For forgetfulness, you can go to a doctor who specializes in diagnosing dementia or memory disorders, such as a neurologist, psychiatrist, psychologist or geriatrician.

The importance of doctor control for forgetfulness

Coping with the onset of forgetfulness and possible dementia can be difficult. The affected person may be aware of this situation and may not share it with anyone because of embarrassment. Even if this is difficult for the affected person, medical supervision is important. Because identifying a reversible cause of forgetfulness ensures that you receive the appropriate treatment.

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In addition, early detection of mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, or a related disorder is also important for:

  • Managing symptoms with early treatment
  • Educating yourself and your loved ones about your illness
  • Determining future life choices
  • Handling financial and legal issues

Your doctor can help you identify community resources and organizations, such as the Alzheimer’s Association , to help you cope with forgetfulness, memory loss, and other symptoms of dementia to benefit you .

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