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        Over 50, 60, 70+ perhaps? Feel you are getting on a bit? And a tad forgetful? Can’t remember where you put things? Getting worried?

        This is the moment we salute our neighbours across the Channel. One specific French neighbour, in fact, for some entente cordiale on this memory health issue.

        That person is French Professor, Monsieur Bruno Dubois, Director of the Institute of Memory and Alzheimer’s Disease (IMMA) at La Pitié-Salpêtrière – Paris Hospitals Group,  who has devised a simple but challenging little exercise for recollections. At the end of taking it, most who do, will surprise themselves with their ability to prove their brain and memory is in fact, intact.

        First off. A brilliant observation: “If anyone is aware of his/her memory problems, they do not have Alzheimer’s!”

        A reminder,  Alzheimer’s is progressive mental deterioration in the brain (premature senility)

        Two of the most frequently cited statements are:

        1. I forget people’s names.
        2. I do not remember where I put some things .

        According to the professor, it often happens in people, 60 years and older that they complain that they lack memory.

        He explains: “The information is always in the brain, it is the “processor” that is lacking.”

        This is “Anosognosia” or temporary forgetfulness.

        Half of people 60 and older have some symptoms that are due to age rather than disease.  The most common cases are:
        – forgetting the name of a person,
        – going to a room in the house and not remembering why we were going there,
        – a blank memory for a movie title or actor, an actress,
        – a waste of time searching where we left our glasses or keys .

        “After 60 years of age, most people have such a difficulty, which indicates that it is not a disease but rather a characteristic due to the passage of years .”

        Many people are concerned about these oversights hence the importance of the following statements:
        “Those who are conscious of being forgetful have no serious problem of memory.”
        “Those who suffer from a memory illness or Alzheimer’s, are not aware of what is happening.”

        Professor Bruno Dubois, reassures the majority of people concerned about their oversight:

        “The more we complain about memory loss, the less likely we are to suffer from memory sickness.”

        Now, for that little visual neurological test…..

        Only use your eyes.

        1- Find the C in the table below!

        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOCOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
        OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

        2- If you have already found the C, then find the 6 in the table below.

        99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999
        99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999
        99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999
        69999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999
        99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999
        99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999

        3- Now find the N in the table below.
        Attention, it’s a little more difficult!

        MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMNMM
        MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
        MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
        MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
        MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

        If you pass these three tests without a problem:
        – you can cancel your annual visit to the neurologist.
        – your brain is in decent working shape!
        – you are far from having any relationship with Alzheimer’s.

        There is no time limit on the test.

        Please share this with your over-60-friends, it can be reassuring to them.

        A tip of the hat to Professor Bruno Dubois, Director of the Institute of Memory and Alzheimer’s Disease (IMMA) at La Pitié-Salpêtrière – Paris Hospitals Group for this simple but powerful test. And a little shout out to Roger T in Agios Nikolaos for putting this out in an email to those in the foreign community in Lassithi early this year.

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