Results of My Memory Test

Linking up with the Chronic Friday Linkup at Being Fibro Mom and the Weekend Blog Share at Hannah Spannah.

So many of us, whether it be from a disease or medication, experience impaired memory and concentration so I decided a couple of months ago that I needed to know why or where my problems were coming from. So I took a Neuropsychiatric or Neuropsychological test.

The test was about three and a half hours long and included being told a number of words and asking to repeat them, describing words shown to me, and a test on a computer where you had to figure out the changing patterns of cards. I also had to build towers from the largest to the smallest pieces while only moving one piece at a time, which I found the hardest part of the test.

My results said that my cognitive difficulties were most likely due to a combination of my physical and mental conditions along with the medication I was taking for said conditions. There was no evidence of dementia.

My psychiatrist’s recommendation was to minimize the use of my sleeping medication, the sedative that I take for anxiety, and the medication I take for my nausea. The medications that I take for bipolar disorder could also contribute to impaired memory.

So you mean everything I am taking to be a functional human being is playing havoc with my brain???

Suggested strategies for compensating included finding specific locations for important items, task lists, and tracking daily activities in a blog (hey!) or a notebook. I am pretty much already doing these things and still having difficulties.

I really don’t want to fiddle around with or lower my medication dosages so I guess I will have to keep dealing with these impairments with a sense of humor.

How do you deal with physical or mental and medication “brain fog”?

Do you have any funny stories about your memory troubles?


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About mamasick

Emily Cullen is a pen-name. I suffer from chronic illnesses and diseases which include Bipolar Disorder, Asthma, Diabetes and Fibromyalgia. I had battled Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis but there is no longer evidence of me having these diseases and my Rheumatologist has declared them to be "burnt out" of my system. I am separated from my husband, “Grant”. Our son, “Tyler” was born in September of 2006 and suffers from tics and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and is delayed in fine and gross motor skills. In my blog I seek to let sick moms know that they are not the only ones going through this, and to educate people about what can happens when one becomes catastrophically ill. I also strive to break down stereotypes of what a “Welfare Mom” is like. Anything that I have gone through due to being sick, is written on the pages of Mama Sick.
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16 Responses to Results of My Memory Test

  1. Mike T says:

    I deal with it through consistency. I make sure to do things in the same way over and over. That way, if something is amiss, I can “play back” what happened because it is non-routine.

    • mamasick says:

      I’ve had trouble where I swear that I put something in the same place that I always have and it’s just not there. If it wasn’t for my boyfriend I’d never find anything! Thanks for stopping by, Mike!

  2. GGMandy says:

    Routine is important. Usually my forgetfulness happens when I get interrupted from my routine. Myissue is I have too many things I want to do first thing in the morning…. devotions, exercise, get dressed ha!

    • mamasick says:

      My worst forgetfulness is when a 30 second lapse in the conversation happens and I can’t remember what we were talking about or that I just can’t plain remember a conversation I had. It’s so frustrating!

  3. Alexis says:

    When I worked as a teacher, I had many students who suffered from memory issues. I found that routine charts and written notes helped them a lot.

    • mamasick says:

      Writing notes or keeping lists definitely do help, Alexis. I know your memory gets worse as you age, I just didn’t think it would happen this quickly!

  4. Lutheranliar says:

    Hmmmm. Funny stories about memory loss. That’s a toughie. I might have some, but I can’t recall them just now. #weekendblogshare

  5. Elizabeth says:

    If the boys want something, or want me to do something, I tell them they have to remind me because mommy forgets. But I also have a white board on my fridge that I write what I need to get done. I put doc appts directly into my calender on my phone when I make them instead of them giving me a little card, then weekly I update the physical calendar on the wall at home. Lately I’ve been using Health Storylines app more and more after reviewing it for CIB. Its got journal, tasks, questions to ask tools and more. Plus in the symptoms you can track your forgetfulness and confusion daily.

    • mamasick says:

      I always tell my son to remind me of stuff too, Elizabeth, and he’s been pretty good about me forgetting stuff as he gets older. I put my appointments in my phone too and that helps a lot.

  6. Angie says:

    I take EHT, and although I started taking it just for my tremors it gives my memory a boost as well. My tremors are most likely a side effect of one or more of my many medications, but I really don’t want to start juggling meds around again. Last time I did that I slept all day and my tremor was so bad I couldn’t feed myself. So although I’m still in constant pain, anxious, depressed, and have muscle spasms I think I’ve hit the best compromise I can at this point. With the EHT, a color-coded pill caddy for my every 4 hour meds, and tons of lists, reminders, and alerts set on my phone (plus an app for finding my phone when I leave it in the fridge or somewhere just as odd) I manage to get by most of the time. I also “allow” myself time under the covers when I need it. I set a timer for thirty minutes, then get up and do something. Sometimes I can get two or three small somethings done, but even if it’s just one that’s OK. I LOVE MY TIMER. It also keeps me from overdoing it on the rare “good” day.
    Angie´s last blog post ..How Do You Define Yourself? (Final)

  7. Oh how interesting. I completely agree about you not changing your medication. It is horrific to live with such a bad memory and brain fog – I have got to the point where is simply say, ‘I’m sorry, my brain just doesn’t work properly anymore’. Sending love
    Hannah Spannah´s last blog post ..Weekend Blog Share 17/06/16

    • mamasick says:

      You’re right, Hannah, sometimes we just have to compromise and deal with the fact that we are never going to be 100%!

  8. What an interesting test. I’d be scared to take a test such as that. Well, scared of the findings, anyway. And I would be hesitant to mess with my regular medication, too. If it’s working for you, and you’re willing to take the consequences of memory issues, then keep it the same.

    I’m always having issues with my memory. Currently, in the last few weeks, I’m having difficulties forming words. I know the word I want to say, and I can visually see it in my head, but connecting it between my brain and mouth leaves me speechless. Standing there saying, “umm, umm” with no words. It’s so aggravating!

    Misplacing items has been hilarious, too. Searching for my glasses while they sit on my face, putting milk in the pantry, keys in the fridge. It goes on and on. haha

    • mamasick says:

      Although I did not post this, Brandi, my grandmother had Alzheimer’s and there was a little voice in the back of my mind wondering if I had it too. I breathed a sigh of relief when that came back clear. I have difficulty with words too, forcing me to describe what I mean or having to use a word that is a little off. It is so frustrating!

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