Forgetfullness is the common problems we face in day to day life. Boosting our memory is not so easy but you can follow different ways that helps you to remember the things for long time.
How is memory formed?
Humans have 3 types of memory
- Sensory memory: It only lasts for 1-2 seconds. It retains information about sensory stimuli like sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch.
- Short term memory: It lasts for few minutes to few hours. It is converted to long term memory for further storage.
- Long term memory: It is brought by the structural changes in neurons of brain and lasts for years.
Do we really have unlimited memory?
Theoretically we do have unlimited memory. First we need to understand that the memory we are talking about here is long term memory. Once the act or information is consolidated (repeated or practised enough) it gets converted into long term memory. Long term memory is stored in all of our cerebral cortex whereas short term memory goes to prefrontal cortex and hippocampus.
Why do we forget the things?
Forgetting is inability to retrieve information previously recorded in brain. We forget due to following reasons:
- Result of incorrectly coded memory(we don’t have enough information to properly store)
- Error with retrieval or recall process
Factors enhancing forgetfulness
- Underlying brain diseases
Image source: globalforumonline
The following diseases may also results in poor memory:
- Alzheimer disease: Ageinduced loss of neurons occur. Poor memory, loss of sensation, change in personality could be some of symptoms.
- Parkinson’s disease
- Mental disorders: Depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder
- Brain tumours
Learn about the more causes why we forget things here.
How to boost up our memory?
1. Eat less sugar: Sugar laden diet has been shown to be linked with poor memory and reduced brain volume. Excessive sugar intake is linked with inflammation in brain.
2. Meditation: Meditation improves short term memory in people of all ages. It not only has relaxing and soothing effect but also increases grey matter in brain.
Image source: healthline.com
3. Check your weight: Obesity is risk factor for Alzheimer disease. People with higher BMI were associated significantly worse performance on memory test.
4. Don’t compromise your sleep: Sleep plays important role in transforming short term memory to long term. 7 to 9 hours of sleep is recommended.
5. Exercise daily: Exercise is beneficial for body and mind. Exercise enhances secretion of neuroprotective proteins and improves growth and development of neurons.
6. Drink less alcohol: Alcohol exhibits neurotoxic effects on brain, repeated episodes of binge drinking damages hippocampus.
7. Chocolates: Cocoa is not only delicious but also nutritious as it provides powerful dose of antioxidant.
8. Limit multitasking: Multitasking diminishes mental productivity, elevates fatigue and stress. Try to block out unimportant task and focus on important task
9. Diet: Add whole grain, fruits, vegetables and healthy fats from fish, and nuts indiet.
10. Stay mentally active: Try mental exercise which will boost your memory and brain will remain in good shape.
When to visit a doctor if you have poor memory?
You may need to see your doctor if you are having poor memory along with:
- Problem to retain information in daily life and its affecting your work.
- If you had a concussion.
- If you had family history of mental illness.