Forgetfulness: Knowing When To Ask For Help

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Maria has been a teacher for 35 years. Teaching fills her life and gives her a sense of accomplishment, but recently she has begun to forget details and has become more and more disorganized. At first, she laughed it off, but her memory problems have worsened. Her family and friends have been sympathetic but are not sure what to do. Parents and school administrators are worried about Maria’s performance in the classroom. The principal has suggested she see a doctor. Maria is angry with herself and frustrated, and she wonders whether these problems are signs of Alzheimer’s disease or just forgetfulness that comes with getting older.

Many people worry about becoming forgetful. They think forgetfulness is the first sign of Alzheimer’s disease. Over the past few years, scientists have learned a lot about memory and why some kinds of memory problems are serious but others are not.  Read More…

Fatigue: More Than Being Tired

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“You better get up soon,” Dan called to his wife, Liang. “The grandchildren will be here in an hour for lunch.”

“I don’t know what’s wrong with me,” Liang said. “I feel so tired. I’m not even sure I can get out of bed. I just don’t seem to have any energy—not even for my family.”

Everyone feels tired now and then. Sometimes, like Liang, you may just want to stay in bed. But, after a good night’s sleep, most people feel refreshed and ready to face a new day. If you continue to feel tired for weeks, it’s time to see your doctor. He or she may be able to help you find out what’s causing your fatigue and may even suggest you become more active.  Read More…

Mourning the Death of a Spouse

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When your spouse dies, your world changes. You are in mourning—feeling grief and sorrow at the loss. You may feel numb, shocked, and fearful. You may feel guilty for being the one who is still alive. If your spouse died in a nursing home, you may wish that you had been able to care for him or her at home. At some point, you may even feel angry at your spouse for leaving you. All these feelings are normal. There are no rules about how you should feel. There is no right or wrong way to mourn.  Read More…

Dealing with Depression

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Everyone feels blue now and then. It’s part of life. But, if you no longer enjoy activities that you usually like, you may have a more serious problem. Feeling depressed without letup can change the way you think and the way you experience emotions. Doctors call this clinical depression.

Being “down in the dumps” over a period of time is not a normal part of getting older. But, it is a common problem, and medical help may be needed. For most people, depression gets better with treatment. Counseling (talk therapy), medicine, or other treatments can ease the pain of depression. You do not need to suffer.  Read More…