5 Surprising Causes of Memory Loss

40% of adults over the age of 65 have issues with memory loss in the United States. That's roughly 16% of the population dealing with age-related memory loss.


40% of adults over the age of 65 have issues with memory loss in the United States. That’s roughly 16% of the population dealing with age-related memory loss. But there are even more people who deal with memory loss that isn’t related to age.

But what causes memory loss? Keep reading to find out.

1. Drug or Alcohol Abuse

Large amounts of alcohol can inhibit our brain’s ability to create new memories and store new information. This is especially true for binge drinking.

When people drink until they blackout, they’re forgetting chunks of time. That memory loss can be permanent if they don’t stop drinking.

Drug abuse and overdosing can do the same thing.

2. Head Injury 

Like those that happen after the crash in a car accident, head injuries can also cause short-term memory loss.

Your injury doesn’t have to knock you unconscious for it to cause memory loss. Depending on how hard you were hit in the head, these memory losses could be permanent.

3. Poor Nutrition 

Vitamin B12 is essential for our nerves to function. When you don’t get enough B12 in your diet, it could lead to you becoming easily confused. Make sure you get at least 2.4 micrograms of B12.

You can get B12 from dairy, meat, fish, and other B12 enriched foods like cereal.

4. Anxiety and Depression

Memory loss is one of the least talked about side effects of having depression or anxiety. If you’re dealing with home and work responsibilities, dealing with depression, and are having trouble sleeping, you could also have memory lapses.

If you want to improve your memory, try reducing your stress. Meditation and exercise can help to lower your stress levels. They give your brain a chance to wind down and let your brain process new information.

If your stress and depression go untreated, your brain will start to function poorly in the long run. Talk to your doctor if you think you’re experiencing a mood disorder.

5. Medications

Lastly, there are a lot of medications that can cause a loss of memory. If your medications are making you lose your memory, talk to your doctor about changing your dose.

According to the FDA, these medications can cause you short term memory loss:

  • Diabetes medication
  • Cholesterol-lowering medication
  • Painkillers
  • Antidepressants
  • Anti-anxiety medication
  • Antihistamines
  • Sleeping pills

Additionally, if you take a statin, you are at a higher risk of other cognitive side effects. Luckily, these are usually reversible.

Metformin can also cause memory issues and other cognitive impairments.

Combat Memory Loss and Live Well 

Memory loss is no joke. It’s a cognitive impairment that can cause you to forget huge chunks of your life. It can make it difficult for you to maintain a steady job, have meaningful relationships, and it can make living your daily life unmanageable.

If you’ve been experiencing memory loss and have experienced one of the issues listed above, talk to your doctor right away. Most memory loss isn’t permanent and with the proper medical help, you could get your memory back.

For more health tips and tricks, keep reading.

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