What to do if you're worried about memory loss

See your GP ifyou're worried because you or someone you care for has lost their memory. They'll do aninitial assessment and ask questions about symptoms, family historyand lifestyle. They may alsoarrange a blood test .

Memory losshas a wide range of possible causes, depending on the type of memory loss.

Doctors classify memories as either:

  • immediate memories such as sounds, which are only stored for a few seconds
  • short-term or recent memories such as telephone numbers, which stay in your memory for 15 to 20 seconds; the brain can store about seven chunks of short-term information at any time
  • long-term or remote memories more permanent memories, which have been reinforced because you've repeatedly gone over them in your mind

If your GPthinksyou or your relativeneedsan assessment for dementia,or that there may be another more serious underlying condition, such as brain damage, they'll refer you to a specialist.

Content supplied by the NHS Website

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 21 Dec 2018