There are times when our memory fails us – we forget a loved one’s birthday, what we did on the weekend, we may even lose track of a conversation that we are having, etc. This is not a concern exclusive to old age. It affects people with a neurological condition such as an acquired brain injury, a stroke, multiple sclerosis, etc. Here is a first part of a series of useful tips to help retrain and improve your memory.
Becoming involved is a useful way of improving your memory. It is easier to remember something which you take part in actively. It is easy to forget things which isn’t interesting. E.g. If you’re not doing anything for your loved one’s birthday, it is easy to forget the day.
Here are some suggestions on how to become more involved:
Family and friends
- Stay (positively) in touch with family and friends, e.g. send birthday cards, write letters, emails, phone.
- Go out to stimulating places: go to the beach together, go out for coffee – spend quality time together to create memories.
Spiritual / Other
- Become involved with spiritual activities e.g. church.
- Create time to think, focus and reflect.
- Keep yourself busy with tasks.
- Exercise within your physical limits e.g. walking, swimming, bowling.
- Follow a balanced diet.
- Avoid excessive use of alcohol and nicotine.
- Rest regularly – do not take an afternoon nap if you have difficulties sleeping at night.
- Keep a monthly budget.
- Draw up a shopping list.
Think About It
- What am I involved in right now?
- Are they stimulating?
- What is one other thing I can take up as my responsibility?
“I find that organising something helps me with my memory. For example, organising a Christmas party where I have to think about the venue, food, guests, games, prizes really gets my brain working!” says Milissa, young stroke survivor.
For more information, please do not hesitate to contact our mobile rehabilitation service. We are also found on the Medibank Private occupational therapy providers list.