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Serenity Lane Exposes Drug-Induced Memory Loss

Serenity Lane recently posted a blog piece discussing the side effects of memory loss from substance use. As the oldest non-profit rehabilitation center in the state of Oregon, they have a long history of helping the community learn more about substance use disorders and their side effects. They strive to lessen the stigma surrounding substance use so more people can easily access the treatment they need for long-term recovery.

Memory loss is a lesser-known and lesser-recognized side effect of substance use. In some cases, it can be subtle and hard to recognize without the help of an outside source. While memory loss can come with age and other health conditions, it can also be caused by a variety of substances and medications. “Memory loss is a common side effect of hundreds of medications, including certain prescription, popular over-the-counter, and a wide range of recreational drugs.”

Serenity Lane goes on to explain the significance of memory loss and how it can impact a person’s day-to-day life. “Memory loss can lead to confusion, forgetfulness, and difficulty concentrating. In some cases, it can cause difficulty in performing our jobs, a loss of confidence, social isolation, or depression.” A healthy memory plays a large part in how a person feels connected to the world and those within it.

The article next dives into some of the most common sources behind memory loss in substances and medications. “When it comes to (over-the-counter) and prescription medications, there’s one medical term worth memorizing: anticholinergics. Anticholinergics are a class of drugs that influence or suppress certain cognitive functions, particularly the ability to form and retain memories.” Serenity Lane discloses that over 600 medications are connected to anticholinergics.

“In many cases, memory impairment caused by anticholinergic medications is reversible upon discontinuation of the drug. However, as we age, the effects of anticholinergics can have a more critical, long-lasting effect.” Certain antidepressants and forms of benzodiazepines have been shown to be potentially tied with memory loss, as well.

There are also illicit substances that can lead to memory loss. Common ones include alcohol, ketamine, marijuana, ecstasy, magic mushrooms, and more. The article stresses, however, that the substances listed are not extensive and many studies are still ongoing regarding memory loss and substance use. “Not enough research is available to know, with certainty, which drugs or medications are ‘safe’ from memory loss side effects.”

Serenity Lane finishes the article by explaining the treatment options available for substance use and how treatment can often assist in reversing memory loss. While not all side effects are easily or completely reversible, they stress that the best way to reduce memory loss from substance use is to seek treatment.

Serenity Lane has been helping people overcome substance and alcohol use disorders since 1973. All of the programs they offer have been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). They have introduced many new programs in Oregon, such as residential step-down and outpatient programs that integrate residential and outpatient services. They have also been the provider of the only Addiction Counselor Training Program in Oregon. Some of their graduates are now offering their services through several treatment programs throughout the country.

People who would like to know more about the addiction treatment services available through Serenity Lane of Portland, Oregon can visit their website or contact them by telephone or email. Serenity Lane has live people ready to help place patients from 8:00 am - 7:30 pm Monday through Friday, and 8:00 am - 6:00 pm Saturday and Sunday.


For more information about Serenity Lane Portland East, contact the company here:

Serenity Lane Portland East
Stephanie Edwards
(503) 546-7677
12662 SE Stark, Plaza 125 Bldg. A.
Portland, OR, 97233

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