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Memory loss, when to ask for help? long... sorry

(25 Posts)
Chandra Mon 15-Mar-04 20:11:27

Since my pregnancy I noticed my memory is getting worse and worse, at first I assumed it was part of the process of becoming a mother as so many people experience the same so I just put the problem at the back of my mind and started making jokes about being so forgetful. What worries me is that things are not getting better at all and not only do I found myself at the shop with absolutely no idea what I was looking for, but have experienced things that I are a bit worse:

-Have spent 3 months working on a huge essay, one month later I don't remember what was the subject, and couldn't remember it for almost a week.
- Have started mixing words that are totally unconected for example bed and box, dog and block and many times I can take up to a minute to remeber the name of something as simple as a stappler.
-My spelling is disaster, now I need to write down every single diferent option for a word before being able to choose the correct one.
- I have started having problems using verbs like to say " did you got..." etc.
- I'm getting very stressed as I feel that if I don't do the things immediatly I am going to forget or even simple things as taking note in class is a disaster, I can not write down more than 4 words without forgeting what was the phrase I wanted to write down or even worse, without being able to remember what was the phrase about.
- I have started writing everything down but, guess what? I forget where did I write it or forget that I did.

I have mentioned these things to several doctors and they say that is normal and is part of becoming a mother but the problem is definitively becoming an issue as I am not able to cope with my studies and job, and very often find myself sobbing about the fact of how helpless and useless I feel...

Does any body can throw some light onto the matter or suggest something else then ginko bilova (SP??)
Thank you very much.

Janh Mon 15-Mar-04 20:35:16

chandra, from a quick google it appears that there is a connection between PND and short-term memory loss - could this apply to you?

Jimjams Mon 15-Mar-04 21:05:46

are you on any medications?

Also worth asking the dr to check thyroid function,

If you are worried I think you need to go back to your dr again.

twiglett Mon 15-Mar-04 21:10:26

message withdrawn

Chandra Mon 15-Mar-04 21:57:05

JanhD Probably not PND as it started well before childbirth and my baby isnow 1 yr old, but sometimes I believe it may be SAD.

JimJams My thyroid is fine, they checked it about 3 months ago but I have not have had 3 periods in the last 10 months, sometimes I feel as if I had PMS all the time...

Twiglett! I feel just the same! but has got worse with work not better

I'm starting to wonder if it could be stress, today I was at a point of flicking a coin to decide whetr I leave university or leave my job... (I do need both tough, one to keep me out of depression and the other to pay the bills...)

coppertop Mon 15-Mar-04 22:07:42

I do similar things. Sometimes I put the wrong word into a sentence, eg "I'm just going to water the dog" instead of "water the garden". We don't even have a dog! Other times the word I'm looking for is simple but so far beyond me that I have to explain what it is that I mean, eg I couldn't remember the word "saucepan" no matter how hard I tried and ended up having to say "the thing with a handle that you cook with." It's definitely got worse with each pregnancy. I find that it's about a thousand times worse if I am tired or stressed. Could these be triggers for you too?

aloha Mon 15-Mar-04 22:09:45

How old is your baby? Are you sleep deprived? Lack of sleep has the same effect on the brain. Also, trying to think of too many things, eg, doing degree, working, childcare etc - everyone has their limits.

Jimjams Mon 15-Mar-04 22:11:17

chandra- if you are missing periods that may need checking, Is there anyway you could be having an early menopause? Any other symptoms? Hot flushes etc? Certainly hormones can play havoc with memory.

Alternatively are you really busy and trying to do loads? As soon as I start to do too much my memory goes and I can't think straight.

fio2 Mon 15-Mar-04 22:17:26

do you eat regular? I always find if I dont eat properly my memory goes, but I have an awful memory too. All the diabetics I know have poor memories too...maybe worth getting checked? you can have it tested at the pharmacy now.

Also I think depression is a big factor with memory. SAD is a type of depression isnt it?

Try not to worry too much, I think we can all be forgetful and muddled at times. It is very difficult to be organised when you have such young children. If you are very worried though maybe see your GP to put your mind at rest or find a possible cause.

Chandra Mon 15-Mar-04 22:48:36

Lack of sleep... well I guess is so obvious that I have overlooked it...after all that has been the norm since DS was born, he sleeps beautifully but it'sonly when he goes to sleep that I get some time to study and do some work to keep up to date... I guess I have been sleeping for 5-6 hrs per night for a long time...curiously if I sleep a bit more I just wake up with a headache...

I have asked to the doctor about not having periods and have been referred to the ginecologyst, it's just a mater of waiting until they can see me, however,many GPs think that as long as you are not trying to get pregnant there's no problem if you are not ovulating but I would like to know how is that conected to my moods.

Depresion... well, it may be it may be not... sometimes I feel I am very fortunate of living in UK but as soon as I go back home I realise how lonely I am with no family around, and being so conected with the University most of the friends we do leave after a few years when they complete their studies, go on sabaticals or move to another universities, we have been living in England for more than 5 years and... I don't think I have a friend in the area who I can talk about the things I talk to you... so yes, I might be in the perfect conditions to get depressed, this goal I have put on finish my degree is what makes me feel I'm doing something valuable apart of raising my beautiful boy. God, I'm in tears now...

Chinchilla Mon 15-Mar-04 22:50:03

Chandra - My memory is hideously terrible too! I am always joking about having passed my brain out along with the placenta. It seems to be getting worse instead of better (ds 2y 8m). I rely heavily on my diary, otherwise I would be in a terrible mess. Sometimes I can't even remember what I did yesterday! No advise, sorry, but at least you know that you are not the only one suffering

Chinchilla Mon 15-Mar-04 22:50:46

'advice' even!

Chandra Mon 15-Mar-04 22:58:12

Thanks Chinchilla

mummytojames Mon 15-Mar-04 23:01:03

chandra have to agree with most of them stress and lack of sleep can affect your memory and it can also affect you hormoans which in turn affects your periods dont worry your not alone i get a period about once every 2 months and i have tried opening a sauce pan with a tin opener (no the lid was not on it at the time) i have taken sugar as far as i can remember so i make coffee with sugar normal go in the room thinking theres sugar in it only to realise i have forgoten sugar someone says as a joke like spell i as in i am going out and i sit there foe ten minuits thinking how to spell it but if its getting to much go back to your gp and tell them and tell them how its affecting your every day life they might be able to help you

Jimjams Mon 15-Mar-04 23:10:15

chandra- I know its not for everyone- but have you considered homeopathy? It's worked miracles at times in our family (for example my mum's hair grew back aftet 2 years of losing it- and she's been to specialists etc). The price of a consultation can seem expensive but becuase you only go once every 4-6 weeks its not so bad.

I go very dizzy and feel like I'm passing out when I get tired. It affects us in weird ways.

BadHair Mon 15-Mar-04 23:18:33

Chandra, I too noticed that my memory got left behind on the labour ward, and I'm forever forgetting what I was talking about mid-sentence. I agree with Twiglett and think that if you're worried about this you should go back to see your GP. Sometimes the more you worry about something, the worse it gets, so although its probably nothing its the very fact that you find it worrying that makes it worse (if that makes sense). Might also be worth nagging them to find out why your periods have been affected, as worrying about this can only add to the stress you're already under. Hope this helps.

Janh Mon 15-Mar-04 23:24:21

btw chandra, while you're around, I don't think you will have seen this (I don't think you were about when I posted it).

Nothing helpful to offer about the memory thing though, except that I am terribly forgetful myself these days - probably age-related in my case, I do the thing where I go upstairs and forget why I went and have to go back to where I was and even start doing again what I was doing when I decided to go upstairs...it does often come back if I wait long enough! I also forget words - stand there like a goldfish with my mouth open waiting for someone to feed me the word I want. Not enough sleep does sound like a significant factor and probably affects me too.

I feel for you as far as the loneliness is concerned. When I had my first child we were living abroad, we knew a few people but didn't have the kind of network you get when you've been in a place for years and have family too. I don't know which city you are in but there are bound to be mother-and-baby organisations of various kinds, with people who won't be disappearing off on sabbaticals etc; do you go to any of those?

Chandra Mon 15-Mar-04 23:25:01

I have tried homeopathy with my baby's eczema and it worked like a charm, however, it may be my fault but the last time that I visited the homeopathic doctor she told me I was mistreating the child by applying creams that contained parafine and told me I was driving him to asthma(tried calendula cream but we were using 2 tubes per day to keep it controlled so, for merely economic reasons went back to Eucerin). I felt so bad about it that now that the pediatrician has said that he has the signs of having it, I'm a bit ashamed to see the homeopath again. I fear so much she will say "I told you.."

However, if anybody can recommend a good homeopath in the Leeds area I will be more than happy to try it again...

Chandra Mon 15-Mar-04 23:35:16

Jahn, Thanks! I haven't seen your message, I will try to go , it has to be very interesting! and people around could hear me emulate E.T. when saying "hooommmmeeeee".

robinw Tue 16-Mar-04 07:12:40

message withdrawn

2under2 Tue 16-Mar-04 09:04:12

Chandra, the Good Health Centre in Roundhay is really good. They have a homeopath who is also a qualified GP. I've not seen her but I used to take my dd to see her husband, who is a brilliant osteopath. It's a very nice place and on the pricier side, but worth it. Hope this helps.

chocbox Tue 16-Mar-04 09:44:48

My memory has got progressively worse with each birth and is definately worse when tired. I have to write everything down, lists everywhere and then forget where I've put them. Sometimes I forget what I was going to say mid sentence and sometimes while driving forget where I'm going. Have been taking Ginko Biloba for the past month or so and there is a definite improvement

marthamoo Tue 16-Mar-04 09:46:10

Do you know how relieved I am, chandra, that it isn't just me? This started with my first preganancy 7 years ago (putting my purse in the fridge, forgetting appointments etc.) and I'm just as bad now. I put it down to permanent tiredness (even though I am no longer truly sleep-deprived, I am still tired all the time), PND, hormones, SAD, and motherhood in general!

I feel "muzzy" headed much of the time. I can't remember words, or names (and I used to be so good at names!). I constantly do what coppertop describes and put the wrong word in a sentence, eg., "come on, let's get you a nappy" when I actually mean "come on, let's get you a drink." Another thing, which is really weird, is using the wrong phrase to describe things - eg., "yes, we are going to go there yesterday." "I did that tomorrow."

And I am fundamentally unable to get the names of places right - I have said to dh "OK, I'll meet you in Mothercare" and then stood, cursing him, in Woolworths, wondering where he is. I MEAN Woolworths, but for some reason I SAY Mothercare.

I think the difference is, that you feel like this and have to manage studies and a job too. I am a SAHM, so it doesn't matter so much if I sound a little deranged and can't remember what day of the week it is. It sounds like you are in a vicious circle now where worrying about it is raising your stress levels and making the problem worse. I would see your GP again, don't be fobbed off. And see an alternative practitioner too - homeopathy, reflexology? And try and eat well, and get as much sleep as possible. Re:the writing down of things - carry a notebook everywhere and write everything down in the same place, then you won't forget where you've written it.

Hope it helps to know you are not alone - you've got so much on your plate with your child, your job and your studies - you're trying to keep so many balls in the air at once, and I bet you have no "me" time at all

Jimjams Tue 16-Mar-04 09:46:19

worth a change of homeopath chandra..... They shouldn't tell you to stop using emollients on eczema!

Paula71 Tue 16-Mar-04 22:04:38

Oh thank god for this!

Since getting pregnant with ds twins (now 26 months old) I have become so inarticulate it is ridiculous. Like most on here I forget the easiest of things and muddle things up - it has really been getting me down. I haven't gone to the docs as I was worried what he might say or that he would think I was being stupid and a total failure.

At least I realise now how common it is and I am not so alone in it!

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