Mind Matters | Struggle with forgetfulness

The Annapurna Express

The Annapurna Express

Mind Matters | Struggle with forgetfulness

If there is a mental health issue you struggle with, email it to us at [email protected] We will get your query answered by a trained psychiatrist/psycho-social counselor in the upcoming issue


I am a 25-year-old student struggling with forgetfulness. I cannot remember the tasks I need to complete, people’s names and the conversations I have with them. This started last year. I cannot learn and understand new things and of late, I cannot even hold a conversation for long. I always have a mild yet persistent headache. I am afraid I might have some brain disease. I am terrified. What should I do?—A scared fellow

Answered by Krishangi, Psychologist, Happy Minds 

There can be several reasons for your forgetfulness, both mental and physical: lack of sleep, stress, or some form of mental illness. I suggest you start by going through your daily routine and identifying potential causes of your stress. 

If you find no major stressor in your daily life, it is best that you get a thorough physical examination. To understand why you might be having these symptoms, I suggest you get a brain scan. 

If the tests indicate no physical problem, we can be sure that this is a mental issue. Perhaps your sleep pattern is wrong, or you are having a tough time with your studies. We have to identify what is causing your symptoms in order to move ahead with treatment. 

Check your surroundings for that. Maybe something is happening in your college, or among circles of friends and family, which is causing you stress without you realizing it. Again, we have to find the underlying cause first.  

All the things I suggest above, they do seem like a lot. But you can take a step at a time. Start with something small, something easy. For instance, you can start by making improvements in your sleep pattern before moving to other steps. 

If you feel like it is too much for you to follow these steps, get an accountability partner, a close friend or a family member, to assist you in this process. You can also reach out to a psychologist.