3. Practical advice and tips for carers > Memory strategies

Memory strategies

5) Practical tips to help the person with memory problems – 2

Use people to prompt Make arrangements in advance Routines

  • Verbal prompts.” Did you remember to take your tablets at lunchtime”?
  • Physical prompts.” Here are your tablets you should take them just now”.
  • Make a phone call to remind the person of a task.
  • Fatigue. Memory is often worse if the person is tired. Prompt them to take a break.
  • Fun. Tasks which are enjoyable will motivate the person and make remembering easier if it can be associated with a positive experience.

  • Make arrangements to pay bills by direct debit so you won’t forget about them.
  • Plan in advance. You can then check and if necessary recheck.
  • Computer prompts if the person uses a computer every day.
  • Write down important information about a future event where you will easily see it every day. On a calendar, on the fridge door, beside your bed.

  • Chunks of information. It is easier to remember sequences of numbers if they are broken into smaller chunks of a few digits at a time. The same can be done with certain tasks by breaking them down into simple component parts.
  • Give the task their full attention. It is more difficult to remember if the person is distracted. This is especially important at the processing or  taking information in stage.
  • Focus on one task or one part of the task.
  • Put things back in the same place every time e.g keys, remote control.
  • Establish a routine. This is sometimes called “over learning” by frequent and consistent repetition. Reinforcing sequences. This can be frustrating for carers to have to repeat over again but it is helping the person to re establish pathways in the brain.
  • Retrace their steps to locate a lost object they have used recently.

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