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Gainesville Florida Estate Planning & Elder Law Blog

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

“It’s on the tip of my tongue!”

The Florida Council on Aging Board of Trustees has dedicated time each month to debunk a common myth about aging. Recently the topic for discussion was does forgetfulness mean cognitive impairment?

You have surely heard the expression “it’s on the tip of my tongue,” from an elder. Sometimes it is assumed to be associated with progressive cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s disease. While there is a possibility of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, it is more likely that forgetting words or ideas has more to do with accumulating knowledge throughout a lifetime. It is natural for the brain to begin to slow down processing information.

I like using the analogy of a new computer to one that has been filled with completed documents and files. The newer computer runs much more efficiently than the computer with all of the data stored on it. The same goes for our brains, children soak up and react to situations much more quickly than an elderly person.

The message to take away from this is that we must not always jump to severe conclusions when an elder loved one starts to forget things. If you have any doubt about the symptoms of Alzheimer’s contact your medical professional.

For more information on the myth of forgetfulness please refer to the websites below:

http://www.apa.org/pi/aging/resources/guides/older.aspx

http://www.alz.org


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