Some memory loss after stroke is quite common. There are many ways your memory can be affected by stroke.
- Verbal memory – memory of names, stories, and information having to do with words.
- Visual memory – memory of faces, shapes, routes, and things you see.
- Trouble learning new information or skills.
- Unable to remember and retrieve information.
- Short-term memory – you may be able to remember events from 30 years ago, but not what you ate for breakfast this morning.
- A type of dementia called vascular dementia, which it second only to Alzheimer’s disease as a leading cause of dementia.
Things to do to help with memory loss:
- Try to form a routine – doing certain tasks at regular times during the day.
- Pay attention. You can't remember what you aren't paying attention to.
- Ask questions to fully understand. You can'y remember what you don't understand.
- Practice your memory all day, every day with simple things.
- Repetition: Repeating something over and over again in your head or out loud can help you to consciously manipulate the information so that it sticks.
- Visualization: See it in your mind. Paint a picture of what you want to remember. Imagine you are completing the action.
- Association: Linking something you’re familiar with to what you want to remember.
- Try not to tackle too many things at once. Break tasks down into steps.
- If something needs to be done, make a note of it or do it right away.
- Make a habit of always putting things away in the same place where they can be easily seen or found.
- Keep a notebook of information -- both important and trivial.
- Create mnemonic devices to help remember tasks. For example, the phrase "ALL OK" might help you remember what needs to be done before he leaving: appliances (off), lights (off), locked (door), oven (off), keys (in pocket).
- Take a class or computer program aimed at improving memory.
- If you have an iPad, you can buy the Spaced Retrieval Therapy app ($4.99), which works on improving memory of names, facts, and routines.
- The Eidetic app boasts that you can “learn and remember anything” by also using spaced repetition.