Changes in Cognitive Thinking
Living with MS can bring cognitive changes and that may be the first symptom people may experience. Cognitive changes are a common symptom of MS — more than half of all people with MS will develop problems with cognition.
Certain functions are more likely to be affected than others:
- Information processing (dealing with information gathered by the five senses)
- Memory (acquiring, retaining and retrieving new information)
- Attention and concentration (particularly divided attention)
- Executive functions (planning and prioritizing)
- Visuospatial functions (visual perception and constructional abilities)
- Verbal fluency (word-finding)
5 Ways to Improve Memory
- Eat healthy - I already talked about nutrition basics for MS in an earlier post. Eating a healthy diet will also help keep your memory at its best.
- Get plenty of rest - Get into a routine of going to bed at the same time. Make your bedroom a place of rest. You want an atmosphere that is calming and relaxing so you will fall asleep fast.
- Exercise - Getting the proper activity into your daily routine will help the creativity juices keep flowing.
- Learn something new - This may be the time in your life to learn how to dance, play the piano, sail, or go camping. You get the idea. This will give your brain a boost and give you a feeling of accomplishment.
- Manage your stress - There are many ways to reduce your stress. One positive way is to start a journal to keep track of everything you are grateful for. Write down you thoughts, goals, accomplishments, conversations, etc. Write things down so you can go back and reflect on them. Another way to reduce your stress is to listen to yourself when you speak. Are your words positive or negative? That will make a difference in your stress level. Read more about reducing your stress by changing your negatives to positives here.
What techniques do you use to improve your memory? Please share them below in the comments section.