Harvard Health Letter

Getting out in front of mild cognitive impairment

Photo: Thinkstock

Get into the habit of keeping keys by the door, so you can find them with less effort.

Good habits, simplified choices, and memory tools can help you cope.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a slight but noticeable change in thinking and memory skills, and it affects the ability to work, earn money, and remain independent. "You may miss appointments, lose things frequently, have difficulty recalling names or words you'd like to use. You may also have a harder time finding familiar places and keeping track of important dates," says Dr. James Ellison, director of the geriatric psychiatry program at Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital. MCI affects different areas of cognition for different people. But you can limit MCI's daily impact with simple steps.

To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »