Wednesday, August 14

Doorway Memory Loss Explained

EVER WALK INTO A ROOM with some purpose in mind, only to forget what it was? It turns out, doors themselves are to blame for these strange memory lapses. Can this contribute to dementia's wandering, confusion and problems with traveling?

Psychologists at the University of Notre Dame have discovered that passing through a doorway triggers what's known as an event boundary in the mind, separating one set of thoughts and memories from the next.

Your brain files away the thoughts you had in the previous room and prepares a blank slate for the new locale.

It is referred to as a location-updating effect, and it results in a decline in memory when people move from one location to another.

This may help explain the confusion a person with dementia experiences when they transition from one place to another, as well as when they wander or travel.

Walking through doorways causes forgetting:
Further explorations
Gabriel A. Radvansky, Sabine A. Krawietz, and Andrea K. Tamplin
Department of Psychology, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, USA


Comment or Share:

  1. When ever i walk to another room to tell my husband something truley great....when i arrive he asks what im here for, i say im thinking of the hereafter! He said, what does that mean?, i say, im trying to think what im here, after!

  2. Does this mean that someone who suffers from this on a regular basis has some form of dementia?

    1. No. From what the researchers are saying, it can happen to anyone and on a regular basis. It just helps explain why transitioning from place to place often adds to the confusion of a person with dementia.

  3. I totally beleave that .... cause when ya get in the other room your mind goes Blank LOL

  4. Interesting information.Never thought of that before.

  5. Replies
    1. The "MORE INFORMATION" section at the bottom of the article has a clear reference and a link to the original study, just like every research article on this site. It's for real.

    2. No its not a joke it's really true

    3. I learned this concept a while back and since then the way I deal with it is saying out loud to myself on the way to the next room what I need to ask or tell my husband. Sometimes I write it on a notepad so that if I can't remember when I get there I can come back and look. I know it sounds silly but it works

  6. Makes sense. That's what it feels like is going on.

  7. Very interesting. I'd love learn more about what they prove in this. There's a reason for everything. If this is the case, it would explain why residents with dementia wander the halls, in living homes.


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