Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 6: Short Term Memory

Short Term Memory is one of the first things that gets affected by Alzheimer’s. As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, short term memory is one of the more visible signs that there is something wrong. It begins with you not being able to remember what happened yesterday, then last week, then last month and so on. It is a very important topic to look at and it is what we are going to be covering in today’s blog.

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is the sixth blog in the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series and is going to be about Short Term Memory. As I said in the introduction to this blog Short Term Memory is one of the more visible signs that someone has Alzheimer’s or that their condition is deteriorating. It is something that we have to pay close attention to and something that we need to try and identify sooner rather than later.

This short video introduces the topic from a professional’s point of view:

Larry Lawhorne tells us in the video that the first thing that people forget is what someone has just told them. Short Term Memory is affected first and foremost in nearly all Alzheimer’s patients. People start to forget their partner’s name, who they are, where they are and so on.

This progresses into affecting language skills, such as forgetting certain words. The example used in the video was surrounding a pen. A person with Alzheimer’s could forget what a pen is and have to explain what it is to you for you to tell them the word. As we saw in the video Larry describes the pen as something you hold in your hand to write with. Now I fully understand that if you do not know someone with Alzheimer’s then this might not sound real, but it really is.

The second video we have reinforces the points made in the first video but also brings in testing and a deeper insight into what is actually happening:

When planning this blog out I thought of two different angles that I could take. The first one was to go into great detail about what happens to short term memory when it is affected by Alzheimer’s. This was the one I was going to go with when I realised something. This series was designed to talk about how we can reduce our chances of getting Alzheimer’s, not just about how memory is affected by the cruel disease. That is why I have instead chosen to go with the second plan.

The second plan was to talk briefly about how Alzheimer’s affects short term memory and then talk about how we can use this to our advantage in trying to reduce our risk of getting Alzheimer’s. This is the plan that I am using for this blog. We have already gone over how it affects short term memory and the video goes into a little more detail by talking about how it affects the Hippocampus part of the brain.

So the question arises now, how do we try to maintain our short term memory?

There are a few different ways that we can try to maintain our short term memory. Firstly is by simply asking questions about what happened recently. What you could try to do is recap what has happened over the past day, then the past week then the past month. This will help ensure that you are keeping your brain stimulated and are constantly thinking and recapping what is going on.

The second way is by keeping in touch with the recent news. News is a great way of keeping in the loop of not only what is going on in the world but what is going on in your local area and what is happening with your friends and family. These ways are just about remembering what has happened but there are a lot more ways to improve short term memory.

One of the ways is through mental stimulation games and memory tests. You only have to search memory test on youtube and you can see millions of different results. There are youtube videos, websites and apps that are all designed with the intent to help yu improve your memory. Use the resources that are available. They are there for a reason so make the most of them.

There are a lot of extra methods that I have not spoken about but if you do want to learn more you can always search online or message me and I’ll look into it and get back to you!

That’s all I wanted to talk about in today’s blog! Thank you all for reading! What do you think? Do you think short term memory is something we can improve? How would you improve your short term memory? Do you know any other techniques to reduce your chances of getting Alzheimer’s? Let me know what you think in the comments or on our Facebook page!

Sweeney’s Blogs

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James

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