How much memory loss is normal with ageing?

Research output: Contribution to journalOnline ResourceResearch


You’ve driven home from work along the same route for the past five years. But lately, you’ve been stopping at the same intersection, struggling to remember if you need to turn left or right.

Many occasions in everyday life can make us question whether lapses in memory are normal, a sign of cognitive decline, or even the beginning of dementia.

Our first instinct might be that it’s due to deterioration in our brains. And it’s true that like the rest of our body, our brain cells shrink when we get older. They also maintain fewer connections with other neurons and store less of the chemicals needed for sending messages to other neurons.

But not all memory lapses are due to age-related changes to our neurons. In many cases, the influencing factors are more trivial, including being tired, anxious, or distracted.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Conversation
Publication statusPublished - 19 Dec 2022


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