David Attenborough addresses world leaders at G7
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Presenting programmes such as Blue Planet and Life In Colour, the soothing yet knowledgeable voiceovers Sir Attenborough delivers seem to always blow viewers away. However, troubles with memory loss could make filming increasingly difficult for the star, as he has already revealed in an interview.
Talking to The Sunday Telegraph he described the frustration of not being able to recall the names of animals or plants.
Sir Attenborough said: “There were these searing yellow fields, and I can’t think of the damn name.
“I wanted to say something about it, but I couldn’t.
“It wasn’t until we got quite close to Geneva that I thought, of course, oil seed rape [i.e. rapeseed oil].”
Despite “running into problems,” the ageing star still has an impressive encylopaedic brain, being able to recall the scientific names of thousands of species within the animal kingdom.
With no signs that Sir Attenborough is struggling, memory loss can still be a degenerative and slowly progressing problem that should be taken seriously.
Should I be worried about my memory loss?
Health professionals do recognise that memory loss is a natural symptom of getting older.
There are some crucial differences between what is considered cognitive impairment and more long-term illnesses such as dementia.
Cognitive impairment is when an individual has trouble remembering, learning new skills or concentrating.
Individuals who suffer with these symptoms are often aware that their memory is not as good as it once was, or friends and relatives are able to notice a difference.
But crucially, this memory impairment should not severely impact your daily life and activities.
Bupa suggests that there are other symptoms that may point to a more serious diagnosis.
- Not recalling things that happened recently
- Forgetting conversations or repeating questions
- Losing or misplacing belongings.
In addition if you or someone close to you starts to notice a difference in your behaviour or personality as well as a delay in speech, this could be early signs of dementia.
Dementia is the umbrella term for diseases that affect individuals ability to remember, think or make decisions.
When to seek medical help
If changes in memory become unmanageable it is important to seek medical help.
At an appointment, professional tests can be done to help determine a diagnosis.
Tests include question-and-answer sessions which assess your knowledge of surroundings and what is happening in the world currently.
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