Memory deficits can impact one's function in any or all aspects of daily life. Memory can be divided into short and long-term storage. A good, functional memory requires one to process, retain and recall information and experiences. Certain diagnoses make one susceptible to memory problems, such as Stroke, Traumatic Brain Injury, Cancer, Dementia, progressive neurologic diseases (e.g., Parkinson's Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, etc.), and a wide range of other conditions.
A memory assessment incorporates information about the individual's current status, as well as current and future needs. Information will be gathered from the client, family, and any other involved individuals to help develop a complete picture. The assessment will analyze the individual's ability, contentment with their memory, use of compensatory strategies, and some memory-specific quality-of-life measures. A comprehensive assessment may include testing of additional cognitive skills that contribute to functional memory, such as attention, executive functions, receptive language and reading comprehension. A full report will be generated that can be shared with other medical or educational professionals.
An individualized treatment plan will be created to focus on the individual's specific memory difficulties and needs. Treatment may focus on improving functional recall, increasing the use of evidence-based compensatory memory strategies, improving quality-of-life measures, and/or training family members to assist the client with their memory. The most common treatment plan incorporates all of the above in some capacity. Individualized treatment allows the plan to be fluid and flex to the client's needs as the process moves forward.