The Star Democrat

St likely the rigors of growing old

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ctions peaks when we are about 20 years d and slowly deteriorat­es with each passg year.

So, if you forget that you wear glasses, ve your forgetfuln­ess checked out. But if u simply forgot where you left your glassit is most likely the rigors of getting old,” d Rebecca Weber, CEO of the Associatio­n Mature American Citizens.

The Harvard Medical School published report on the topic, noting that: “Most ople start to notice changes as they enter eir 50s and 60s. Although these changes n cause consternat­ion, most age-related emory and thinking problems don’t stem m an underlying brain disease such as Aleimer’s disease. Instead, what appears to a memory problem may simply reflect a wer processing speed and poor encoding d retrieval of new memories as a result of minished attention. However, even though ur brain may be slower to learn and recall w informatio­n, your ability to make sense of what you know and to form reasonable arguments and judgments remains intact.”

In other words, said AMAC’s Weber, while you may forget where you left your glasses, the knowledge and wisdom you’ve accrued in your lifetime remains. “Remember, it might take a bit longer to recall the details of an event or the answer to a routine question it doesn’t mean that you’ve lost it. You’re simply the victim of the aging process.”

As the folks at the Harvard Medical School put it: “The result is that as you age, it takes longer to absorb, process, and remember new informatio­n. The natural loss of receptors and neurons that occurs with aging may also make it harder to concentrat­e. Therefore, you not only learn informatio­n more slowly, but you also may have more trouble recalling it because you didn’t fully learn it in the first place. With slower processing, facts held in working memory may dissipate before you have had a chance to solve a problem.”

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