We all forget where we have put things at times, and this may get worse when we are stressed or tired. If you have MS, you might find that your attention wanders sometimes, and you don't register where you have left important things like keys or glasses.
Keeping track of all of our actions and decisions can be tough. It can be hard to find things that you have put down in a hurry, particularly if it is not in the usual place. Your brain has to process all the locations where your lost item could be, and try and sort them out.
The tips below help to cut down on the processing for your brain, and make it easier for you to recall where things are quickly.
If your major difficulty is finding things, then your health professional may want to determine what aspect of mental skill is underlying the problem. A psychologist could be useful in assessing the things that cause you problems. For example:
- It may be a problem with concentration, that is your mind wanders and that gap in concentration means you miss where you put down your specs (for example). A successful strategy might be to alert yourself with a certain word or phrase when you place an item, then "snapshot" a picture to store in your mind of the object in the place you have left it.
- The map of your world in your head, including the map of the rooms in your house might not be working as well as it used to. There are ways to strengthen the map and make your recall of it more reliable, including using video games and brain training activities.
If you are having difficulty finding things, the people around you may notice as well. This might be a good time to tell them about your experiences, and about any strategies that you want to try to improve things.
Family members at home could help you check diary entries for the next day, or remind you about sticky notes being in the right places. This will help them to be able to support you better.