Navigation Links
Older adults' memory lapses linked to problems processing everyday events

Some memory problems common to older adults may stem from an inability to segment daily life into discrete experiences, according to a new study published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

The study suggests that problems processing everyday events may be the result of age-related atrophy to a part of the brain called the medial temporal lobe (MTL).

"When you think back on what you did yesterday, you don't just press 'play' and watch a continuous stream of 24 hours," says psychological scientist Heather Bailey of Washington University in St. Louis, who led the study. "Your brain naturally chunks the events in your day into discrete parts."

Bailey and her colleagues hypothesized that older adults may have difficulty with memory for everyday events because they don't segment them in the same way as they're happening.

In the study, older adults some of whom had Alzheimer's type dementia watched short movies of people doing everyday tasks, such as a woman making breakfast or a man building a Lego ship. They were told to separate the movie into chunks by pressing a button whenever they thought one part of the activity in the movie was ending and a new part was beginning.

Afterward, the researchers asked the older adults to recall what happened in the movie. They also measured the size of the older adults' MTL using structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

"The older adults who showed atrophy in the MTL weren't as good at remembering the everyday activities, and they weren't as good at segmenting and chunking the events as they were happening," says Bailey. "MTL size accounted for a huge portion of the relationship that we saw between participants' ability to segment and their memory for the events."

These findings suggest that the characteristic forgetfulness of the aging mind isn't just a problem with recalling memories later, but also with how we view and chunk events as they unfold, a process that depends on MTL functioning.

In light of this, focusing on how to better form new memories may be one way to improve older adults' memory for everyday events, even for those adults who have clinical diagnoses like Alzheimer's.

"Alzheimer's disease attacks the MTL in the early stages of the disease," says Bailey. "But even with MTL atrophy you may be able to train people to chunk better, which might help them to remember their everyday activities better, too."

As part of their future research, Bailey and colleagues hope to further investigate the link between event perception and memory to see if they can combat memory impairments in older adults.


Contact: Anna Mikulak
Association for Psychological Science

Related medicine news :

1. Traumatic brain injury poses complex diagnostic, management and treatment challenges in older people
2. Zamansky & Associates LLC Investigates Chemed Corporation For Possible Securities Law Violations And Breaches Of Fiduciary Duties To Shareholders
3. Exercise May Lower Older Womens Risk for Kidney Stones
4. Drivers education for older drivers remains for 2 years, HF/E researcher finds
5. Research finds psychological vulnerable older adults more susceptible to experience fraud
6. RI Hospital: Nearly half of older women diagnosed with UTI not confirmed in urine culture
7. Surgical delay of more than 48 hours increases mortality in older hip fracture patients
8. Older Adults Posture May Predict Future Disability
9. Experts examine Mediterranean diets health effects for older adults
10. Professional Geriatric Care Managers Offer Tips for Addressing Sensitive Home Safety Issues for Older Adults
11. Social media can support healthiness of older people
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... 2015 , ... On November 10, 2015, Bohrer Brady, LLC filed a class ... of a home health care worker who provided companionship services for the elderly, ill ... employed by Humana, Inc., Humana at Home, Inc., and SeniorBridge Family Companies (CT), Inc. ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... people across the country to celebrate their sobriety and show through pictures what ... “before and after” photos this Thanksgiving with the hashtag #FacesOfGratitude on their Facebook, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... physicians and athletic programs, launches new Wimbledon Athletics Facebook page to ... young athletes for unsuspected cardiac abnormalities. About 2,000 people under the age of ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Smiles by Stevens ... Bruxism, and moderate facial wrinkling. While many patients are aware of the benefits of ... success Botox® delivers to those suffering with discomfort, soreness, and pain as a result ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... IL (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... to six decades of music, friendships, and learning in its 65th Anniversary Brillianteen ... held Dec. 5-6. , For 65 years, Brillianteen has been a ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015 AAIPharma Services Corp./Cambridge Major ... at least $15.8  Million to expand its laboratories ... . The expansion will provide additional office ... growing demands of the pharmaceutical and biotechnology markets. ... will provide up to 40,000 square feet of ...
(Date:11/25/2015)...  ARKRAY USA , Inc., a ... demonstrating the accuracy of its blood glucose meter systems. ... Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease in Los Angeles ... ® 01 meter and the Assure ® ... to accurately measure glucose levels in blood is essential ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , November 25, 2015 Kitov ... ) (TASE: KTOV), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the ... various clinical conditions, today announced the closing of its ... Shares ( ADSs ), each representing 20 ordinary shares ... 3,158,900 ADSs. The ADSs and warrants were issued in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: