Headway
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Trouble remembering simple tasks

Back in 2015 I had a bad fall and had a bad bleed in my head. And had the operation where they drilled a hole and took out part of my skull. 2 years later I'm becoming more and more forgetful. I'm 56 years old. One year after the operation I had open heart surgery where they replace the mitral valve in my heart which was leaking. Does anyone else have the problem of forgetfulness that I do?

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Memory problems can be a problem after a traumatic or acquired brain injury but if it is a worsening or new problem I would suggest that you go and see your G.P as may need to be checked out further.

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New year wishes to you,

What I found was after my injury, I spent a lot of time just sitting there in pain after my injury not doing much. Then when I started to do more and more, the effects of my injury started to come to the surface - poor memory, inability to plan properly etc.

You may be in the same position having undergone major surgery twice fairly recently.

Being the same age as yourself, you can't get away from the fact that we are getting older and memory as well as a few other things show some age related deterioration.

I found keeping a balance between keeping my mind occupied and having a rest, the way to try and restore my abilities.

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Same thing here. As long as I did not do much, I did not realized how affected my brain was. Thanks to the plasticity of the brain, I am doing much better as time goes by, as long as I do not get another hit on the head. When I do get another hit, especially on top, or in the back of my head, it pretty much re-starts the cycle all over again.

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Yep agree with the repeated injuries thing. I had a big bang on the head and was on the road to recovery but still had some balance problems - this caused me to fall down then stairs and literally knocked me back.

And of course the older we are the longer it takes to heal

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Yes, the balance issue is a problem which causes more falls and injuries unfortunately.

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more like a weeble would be good - wobble but not fall down :-)

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I agree with the previous replies you received. I am 57 years old and have had a lot of memory problems since my biggest brain injury in 2007. Brain injuries are big contributors of memory issues, but also a lot of people are very affected by the anesthesia during surgery. I had two surgeries in the last two years and it took me quite a while to get back to the diminished level of memory I had before these surgeries. I hope this helps.

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Hi Brian. Before my brain injury my memory & word recall were really sharp. Now I'm frequently lost for the simplest words, can't go shopping for a couple of items without a list and constantly losing things. And whereas I used to revel in challenging discussions, I now clam up as the words are too slow in coming.

I'm 6 years on, and the deficits are still here, but I've learned to find ways through/over/around the issues by admitting they exist (without shame) and walking away from conflict that I know I'm not up to, and which will send me into meltdown.

At the 2 year point you might have been expecting a higher level of improvement, and now feeling serious disappointment/frustration. It's only in the past couple of years that I'm getting the hang of the new me and laughing at my shortcomings (mostly) rather than despising them.

When I complained, as a kid, my mother would say "Be thankful for what you HAVE got and make the best of it". It was irritating then, but now it makes perfect sense !

I hope you can find your own knacks for overcoming your issues Brian ; it's trial & error, acceptance and humour which has got me through. But remember that you can bolster your brain power with loads of mental exercise, such as crosswords & other word games and even video games which rely on speed and alertness for high scores.

I started playing online soltaire after I was discharged from hospital. It's timed and I'm constantly trying to beat my own record ; I've gone from 3½mins to 1min-40sec in 6 years ! And I swear that crosswords have helped with my word recall.

Find you own ways of exercising the grey matter ; preferably something you enjoy and which is a bit challenging. You'll get there. Time really does heal and I hope your head and heart will both gain strength as more time passes.

Stay around Brian ; at least here we have time to put the words together before pressing 'SEND'!

Best wishes, Cat x

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Thanks so much for your encouraging words. Brian

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