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Memory Loss with Aging Appears Linked to Distraction

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Published on Oct 31, 2012

http://www.ucsf.edu/news/2012/11/1304...
Memory loss with aging does not necessarily portend brain disease, but forgetfulness is common and concerning for many. The cause may be the tendency of the older brain to become momentarily distracted by visual stimuli, according to UCSF cognitive neuroscientist Adam Gazzaley, MD, PhD.

Results of brain imaging studies to track blood flow suggest that, "Older people tend to 'overprocess' distracting stimuli, and they are also slower to recover their focus after an interruption when multitasking," Gazzaley said. "There seems to be a stickiness in their brain's ability to switch back to the main task."

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