Is it Forgetfulness or Alzheimer's Disease?

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Johns Hopkins Health Alerts releases new free special report: "The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging" to answer the many questions readers have regarding whether or not their memory loss is a sign of Alzheimer's Disease

The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging

Johns Hopkins Health Alerts has just released a new free special report on memory loss and aging to help answer two common concerns as we live longer than ever before:

  • Does memory loss signal the onset of Alzheimer's disease, or another form of dementia?.
  • How can you protect your memory well into your later years?

Forgetfulness is one of the most common complaints of middle age and beyond. You're in the middle of a conversation about a book when you realize that you can't remember the title or the author's name. You start to introduce your best friend to an acquaintance and suddenly can't remember either name. You find yourself standing in front of the refrigerator wondering exactly why you opened the door.

The difference between normal memory loss that increases with age--known clinically as age-associated memory impairment--and serious dementia such as Alzheimer's disease is that the former is frustrating, but NOT disabling.

In "The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging," The Johns Hopkins Memory Bulletin editors explain the complex science behind human memory, and how age-related memory loss occurs, in clear, plain English.

The good news is that most memory loss has nothing to do with Alzheimer's disease. Nearly all of us take more time to learn and recall information as we age. This occurs because as we get older, the transmission of nerve impulses across cell membranes (synapses) in the brain inevitably slows down.

The decline in our memory progresses slowly, almost imperceptibly, over several decades--until by midlife most of us have found ourselves staring blankly into that refrigerator.

But there are other causes of memory loss or cognitive impairment, which MIGHT be a sign of something more serious. In some cases, it could be related to Alzheimer's disease or another form of dementia. Memory loss could also be related to the medications a person takes, or even to depression.

As the editors state in "The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging," depression is common in the over-50 population, especially in a person suffering from poor physical health, but is frequently under-diagnosed. Depression is often due to a serious chemical imbalance in the brain, and so can mimic symptoms of dementia. Untreated depression can lead to other serious health concerns.

"The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging" outlines the most common symptoms of depression, and how to distinguish it from memory loss, Alzheimer's disease, or dementia.

The final section of "The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging"--"Eight Ways to Protect Your Memory"--distills what we currently know about protecting our memories, with a view towards preventing stroke, Alzheimer's, and other memory-robbing conditions.

To download your free copy of "The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging," please visit:

Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss and Aging

The Johns Hopkins Guide to Memory Loss
Table of Contents

*Introduction: Age-Related Memory Loss

  • Is It Alzheimer's Disease?

*Not So Total Recall As We Age
*Training Your Memory?
*The Results Of Memory Training
*New "Memory Habits"
*Is It Age-Related Memory Loss, or Depression?
*Depression Is Often UnderDiagnosed Over Age 50
*What Is Depression?
*The Signs And Symptoms Of Depression
*Events That Can Trigger Depression
*Treatment Options for Depression
*How to Recognize Depression
*Maintaining Your Mental Health
*Eight Ways to Protect Your Memory

Johns Hopkins Health Alerts is a free public service of Johns Hopkins Medicine that provides information and products for healthy living after 50. We launched our highly-acclaimed monthly print newsletter, The Johns Hopkins Medical Letter: Health After 50 in 1988.

About The Johns Hopkins Memory Bulletin
Medical Editor: Peter V. Rabins, M.D.
Peter V. Rabins, M.D., M.P.H., the medical editor of The Johns Hopkins Memory Bulletin, is Co-Director of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neuropsychiatry at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, as well as a professor of psychiatry with joint appointments in the Department of Internal Medicine and the Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Dr. Rabins has spent his career studying psychiatric disorders in the elderly. He is the co-author of The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for Persons With Alzheimer's Disease, Related Dementing Illnesses, and Memory Loss in Later Life (Warner Books, 2001).
His current research includes the development of scales to measure impairment in people with severe dementia and the study of visual hallucinations in a variety of psychiatric and neurological conditions.
Dr. Rabins and his distinguished advisory board bring you the latest news on Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia in the quarterly Johns Hopkins Memory Bulletin.

For more information on the Memory Bulletin, please visit:
Johns Hopkins Memory Bulletin


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