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Wondering whether a blood test or brain scan can accurately diagnose Alzheimer’s disease? If memory loss is a problem for you or a loved one, consider these points before discussing potential next steps with a doctor.

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Wondering whether a blood test or brain scan can accurately diagnose Alzheimer’s disease? If memory loss is a problem for you or a loved one, consider these points before discussing potential next steps with a doctor.

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Want to travel back in time? Use episodic memory

When people refer to “memory,” they often mean episodic memory, a complex brain process that enables recall of details like names and route detours –– as well as long-ago moments.

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Want a sharp mind, strong memory? Ramp up activities

Research shows that older people who are socially engaged and keep their minds active are more likely to remain mentally sharp. But what specific activities should people do? And does it matter if they start late in life or sooner?

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Trouble keeping information in mind? Could be sleep, mood — or age

Most people experience some degree of decreased memory as they get older, but memory performance is also affected by mood and sleep quality, and these are factors that can be controlled and improved.

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Christina DiTerlizzi

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