I have a lot of memories and I rely on both my long-term and short-term memory to remember them.
Remembering things, actions, places and people is something I take very much for granted and I don’t give a second thought to.
Once I have learnt something, I do not usually forget it but it is hard to remember how I learnt it in the first place.
Learning how to walk and talk, to chew food, to hold a fork and knife, to hold a pencil and write or draw, to clap my hands, to brush my teeth, to build a sandcastle on the beach; these are all part of my procedural long-term memory.
Amnesia is a condition which affects the ability to remember things.
There are two types of amnesia.
The first is Anterograde Amnesia where you can remember everything that happened before an event which happened in your life but nothing afterwards. In other words, you are incapable of forming new memories.
The second form of amnesia is Retrograde Amnesia whewre you cannot remember anything before that event in your lfie which has triggered the memory loss but you can retain new memories.
There are, of course, situations in life when people will fake amnesia if they want to avoid punishment for a crime or gain money through insurance fraud.
A lie detector test may assist in this regard but if amnesia is faked, retrograde amnesia is known to be harder to assess.
There are several main causes for genuine amnesia such as injury or trauma from an accident, strokes, virus, breathing difficulties, brain inflammation, an oxygen, food or liquid intake deficiency.
The film ‘Memento’ is certainly worth a watch. It certainly gives a pretty realistic and accurate idea of what anterograde amnesia is and how it can affect someone insofaras their ability to make friends, socialise, study, make rational decisions and learn new skills.
Our ability to remember things becomes impaired later in life by the onset of dimentia and alzheimers disease.
As we age, quite inevitably, things do slip our mind and sometimes it is necessary to refresh our memory from our memory bank of memories.