Do you sometimes experience brain fog? Do you feel frustrated? Then please keep reading as this may be for you. This brain fog may include the symptoms of confusion, being forgetful, and not being able to focus. From the term itself, it is like your brain is fogging up and making you less perceptive. It can be thought of as when you are trying to recall some previous knowledge or event but you are having a hard time focusing. It is not unnatural of course and indeed it can happen to anybody. People sometimes refer to it as having a “brain fart.” "Brain fog is an inability to really punch through," says Mady Hornig, MD, associate professor of epidemiology at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. "It's a vague sense of what you're trying to retrieve, but you can't focus in on it," she says, "and the effort to harness the thought can be as draining as physical activity."
Despite the fact that brain fog is common, what is alarming is the frequency and the number of individuals who are experiencing the negative effects of it. If this will be the case, a person may also be suffering from brain degeneration and may need some support from sources such as nutritional supplements for the brain.
The “fog” in the brain may persist for several days and the quality of life a person may experience at this time and after can be significantly reduced. What is interesting about brain fog is that it seems not to be measurable. No scientific study or any technique so far has been able to achieve a measure. It is there and everybody knows it, but its degree can’t be put in numbers which can be so frustrating for many who suffer its effects. It is even so ironic that most of the people know and somehow experience its existence but at the same time the level of brain fog is “unknown”.
Brain fog may have a lot of indications. It may be a message coming from your brain itself that you are experiencing something bigger which at the moment you are not aware of. Some of these indications will be discussed further below. Having constant brain fog may be a strong indication that you need to listen to what your body is saying.
So What Are The Common Causes of Brain Fog?
A feeling of constant brain fog might be a pre menopausal sign. The hormones in the body when a woman is approaching menopause will change. These changes might have negative consequences such as varying degrees of blurred thinking. That may be why it was stated some time ago that having brain fog is sometimes just normal as this is obviously a normal part of life for many women. This stage might be very difficult for a person going through menopause not including the fact that age also has a major impact on the brain’s capacity and function. With menopause memory declines and the structure of your brain also changes.
You may also enjoy this info graphic by Ellen Dolgan on Menopause and Brain Fog – simple and effective.
As hormones fluctuate in your body during menopause, cognitive functions are affected.
People who are experiencing depression will tend to lose their focus for very obvious reasons. They often cannot think straight and will have difficulty in exercising sound judgment. Everything may look awkward. Depression might be caused by something more serious and individuals should really see a medical expert for the proper attention towards the problem. Having brain fog is fairly typical, like something telling you that you are feeling down and depressed and you do not have the time to entertain any more ideas and matters. I suppose it could be considered as avoiding further overload as you are busy worrying about things.
Brain scans have actually detected blurry thinking when people are depressed or in those who are suffering from bipolar disorder. “It can feel like drowning without the water. (From The Mighty – over 20 quotes of people describing brain fog some of which are quite alarming) - Like you are mentally struggling to get back to the surface, blurry vision and muffled sound included.” — Tifa Carlyle.
What the brain scan reveals is that there is a specific spot in the brain that shows unusual activity. The same spot is active for those who are also considered as healthy people. It has been concluded that the brain or mind functions differently for the depressed individuals and that is why it would be likely be more common for them to experience some gaps in their thinking. It has also been discovered that recurrent depression shrinks the hippocampus part of the brain known as the emotional center of the brain which may explain some of the effects.
A new global study as you can see from an article entitled “Depression Makes Your Brain Smaller” discusses that brain shrinkage is a consequence of repeated depression instead of being a predisposing factor. This conclusion draws the final line after decades of unconfirmed hypothesizing.
Some shrinkage of the brain has long been connected to depression, although without clear evidence, as variances in types of depression, treatment methods as well as a small sample size have led to inconsistent results. Feeling better therefore has the capacity to reduce brain fog.
Stress is different from depression in a sense that the latter is more serious and even longer lasting. In fact, stress can be one of the causes of depression. On the other hand, stress is not totally bad. It may have good effects to the individual experiencing the stress. For example, if stress can make a person more motivated, then it is a good thing. However, what we are tackling now is the bad effect of stress and how it can slow a person’s brain significantly.
Stress impairs a person’s performance, may it be in work or in school. It would really slow you down, not just mentally but physically as well. After all, it is a two-way process, that is, the brain thinks and then the body moves. If the brain is slow, the body may be as well too.
Stress can be caused by many things - it maybe because you are overworking your body, or you are over thinking something. If you really go beyond what your brain and body can sustain, it will really take its toll on you. But simple things might also become stressful, stress being sometimes a psychological thing. Simple as it may seem, but psychological imbalance might have an unpleasant physically effect. This will happen when your brain is not functioning well and then it is producing unnaturally different hormones. These hormones then translate to produce physical manifestations. But most importantly, stress can make your experience further brain fog. Brain freeze and brain fog can be the result of stress and the body's main stress hormone, cortisol, which is toxic to brain cells in the memory centre in the brain (the hippocampus). The solution is decreasing cortisol known as the stress hormone. There are many ways that you can begin to lower cortisol and the effects of stress. A great list was prepared by Caroleen Jones in the article “Ten Legit Ways To Lower Cortisol and Reduces Stress.” You can begin by taking a closer look at the list of 10 here.
Certain medicines like antibiotics may have adverse effect on a person taking it for medication purposes. Among its bad effects is that it will cause mental clouding, leading to the person’s ability to think being decreased considerably. It is always important to take precautions. A person taking medications shall always be in contact with the physician or expert who prescribed it to avoid serious effects.
- Abnormal Diet
When we say abnormal diet here, we are not just referring to being obese but also the quality of food that we are eating. A balanced diet is important however people will have some difficulty in balancing this because when a person eats, all they can see is the food in their plate– they cannot see the iron content or the protein content. There are no numbers written in the food we eat and we are largely unaware. If you are not eating very well and you feel that this could be adding to your stress and brain fog, take a look at making some simple changes to your diet. As stated by Karena Dawn in the article entitled “Feeling overly stressed? Try making these simple changes to your diet,” there are important foods to consider and you can discover these, e.g. Magnesium is an essential mineral that helps improve fatigue, headaches and inflammation (See More Useful Foods Here)
- An Undiagnosed Health Condition
When brain fog hits you, it might also be a sign of having an unknown health condition. Disease and illness is capable of impairing your cognitive ability. For obvious reasons, an unhealthy body state contributes to the increased effect of brain fog in someone’s brain. Fibromyalgia and Multiple Sclerosis are just some of the diseases which can affect the brain and its functions. Seeing a doctor is always the best way to begin to deal with continuous brain fog.
The experience of brain fog can be hard to deal with. Unless you have experienced it, you may not understand the sentiment of a person suffering from the said non-permanent “blank state”. Brain fog is all happening in your brain, it is intangible and you cannot see it. So, not only does the person experiencing brain fog have problem of dealing with it but also the other people surrounding them may not understand them further making the issue a lot worse as they may begin to feel segregated. Just take this as an example, your boss asked you to get something for him and because everything is blurry in your brain, you brought another thing, then the problem flows to your boss.
Listening skills of a person are also reduced when an individual experiences brain fog. And from it, everything might go wrong because listening is the beginning of everything because it is when you listen that you will get the right instruction and the correct information in order to achieve a favourable result.
A person suffering brain fog is not without help. There are lots of ways to combat brain fog some of which we have covered here. A natural solution can be to enhance brain function and clear out someone’s mind is by taking helpful herbs. There are herbs which have been proven, not by experience alone but also scientifically, to have the capacity to boost someone’s cognitive ability. Some of these herbs are Rosemary, Ginkgo Biloba, Mugwort, Gotu Kola and Ashwagandha.
Each of the mentioned herbs has its unique function. Rosemary is for memory, Ginkgo is for mental clarity, Mugwort helps a person sleeps better, Gotu Kola helps repair damage brain cells and Ashwagandha deals with stress. With the combination of these herbs, there is no doubt that they will improve the quality of life that a person has. “From helping your memory to improving circulation to increasing your ability to work through stress, herbal allies can be really helpful for keeping your mind clear and focused.” - According Aubrey Wallace, the author of “Beat Brain Fog with Herbs that Promote Mental Clarity.” She includes in her article the useful herbal allies.
There are also nutritional supplements available for brain support that are science based and include ingredients that decline in our bodies as we age e.g. Phosphatidylserine. With their addition as a dietary supplement the effect can be like turning back the clock. The manufacturers of good quality science based nutritional supplements for brain enhancement and reduction of brain fog can make a real difference. The best of these nutritional supplements have the above-mentioned herbs as their main ingredients.
Experiencing brain fog can be an annoying condition, not to mention that it bars a person from exercising their full potential however it can be fought for sure. If only a person could attain his full potential in anything he engages in, there is no doubt that the individual will become successful in what they are looking to achieve no matter how large or small the challenge. After all, the quality of life that people have is greatly due to the mental state and physical ability we have and dealing with brain fog can be an essential part of moving to much greener pastures in our lives.
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