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7 Brain Boosters to Prevent Memory Loss

Experts share tips to help ward off age-related memory loss.

5. Sleep Well

It can be harder to get enough sleep as you get older. But when your brain doesn't rest, you can have problems remembering and concentrating. So try to get at least 7 or 8 hours of sleep a night.

Set up good sleep habits by going to bed and getting up at the same time every day. Also, create a calming routine for yourself before bed. If you nap during the day, keep the nap short, no more than 30-60 minutes. Try not to nap after 4 p.m., since that can make it harder to fall asleep at night. If you take sleeping pills to help you sleep, know that they can make you groggy the following day and cause memory loss.

6. Fight Stress

When you're anxious or under pressure, your body makes stress hormones. That helps when it's an emergency. But having high levels of these hormones for too long can hamper your memory. When you're feeling stressed, find things that help you relax -- maybe yoga, tai chi, deep breathing, talking with a friend, or meditation.

7. Learn Memory Tricks

These strategies can help you remember, whether it's finding your car keys or knowing your new neighbor's name.

  • Make a routine. Always put often-used items, like your glasses, keys, wallet, and phone, in the same place every time.
  • Write it down. Jot down things you need to remember -- like appointments or grocery items you need -- as soon as you think of them.
  • Set an alarm. It can help you get to places on time or remember to take medications.
  • Leave yourself reminder notes.  
  • Learn and repeat. To remember names, use the name often in conversation. Try to link the name with a picture that reminds you of that person.
Reviewed on October 07, 2013

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