Sudden short term memory loss – What does it Mean?

November 12, 2012

Sudden short term memory loss – What does it Mean?

If you have a family member or friend who suffers sudden short term memory loss then a doctor should be contacted right away. Most older people gradually find that their memories aren’t quite what they were and that can be caused by the aging process or some other progressive condition. However when there is a sudden short term memory loss then although the reason may not be apparent something has caused it. Common reasons for the onset of sudden short term memory loss can include stroke, a psychiatric disorder, head trauma, infection, brain tumor, drug use or oxygen deprivation. Also known as a cerebrovascular accident, a stroke is a serious cause for the sudden short term memory loss. Stroke victims routinely have memory problems in addition to other symptoms. Trying to recall times before the stroke can be challenging to individuals as can re-learning things already learned but since forgotten. If a blow to head has occurred in the recent past then that could be the cause of the onset of memory loss, again speedy intervention by medical professionals may prevent the situation from deteriorating. Some psychiatric disorders have sudden short term memory loss as a symptom. Disassociative fugue is a disassociative identity disorder which can display sudden memory loss and other types of amnesia as a symptom. If a person has respiratory problems or any conditions which can limit oxygen getting to the brain then the outcome can be sudden short term memory loss. This happens because the blood’s oxygen levels are so low that there is insufficient oxygen to allow the brain to function normally. This can also happen if the person has been choked, nearly drowned or smothered. There are also some types of infection which can ultimately affect the functioning of the brain and sudden short term memory loss can be an indication. Lyme disease and tertiary syphilis both have the potential to bring on this condition if they are left untreated for any period of time. Research is now indicating that tuberculosis and AIDS also have the potential to bring on sudden memory loss at certain times in certain individuals. Any tumor growing in or around the brain can induce memory loss as well as many other unusual behaviors. The tumor affects the behavior of the individual because it presses on certain parts of the brain and can inhibit blood flow. It does not matter if the tumor is benign or malignant in these cases. As well as illegal drugs having a negative effect on memory and cognitive ability there are many prescription drugs which can cause memory loss and confusion. It is quite common for antidepressants, sleeping pills, antipsychotics and strong pain medications to all have some effect on memory. Severe stress of the psychological type can also badly affect memory. If someone has to cope with added stress taking them outside their level of ability then memory issues can begin to display themselves. Sleep deprivation or seeing a traumatic experience can also have the same affect.


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