Brain fog consists of a combination of symptoms related to how your thinking patterns and mind works. These symptoms can include an inability to concentrate, forgetfulness, and feeling scatterbrained.
For example, you may find it more difficult to express your thoughts or come up with thoughts and ideas. Brain fog can happen because of aging, cognitive conditions or injuries, and hormonal shifts. Here are some ways to prevent and mitigate the symptoms of brain fog.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
If you’re not getting at least seven to nine hours of sleep a night, you could develop brain fog symptoms. However, it’s not just the number of hours of sleep you’re getting each night. It’s also the quality of sleep that counts.
Good quality sleep means you’re going through complete sleep cycles, including periods of REM or rapid eye movement, deep sleep, and light sleep. Working out before bed, watching TV, and spending time in front of electronics before you lie down can impact your sleep quality.
Habits like drinking caffeine before bed or health conditions like bruxism, snoring, sleep apnea, and ear, nose, and throat problems can lead to poor quality sleep. If you have or suspect you have a medical condition that’s causing you to wake up tired, get tested or checked out asap.
Take Breaks from Electronics and Work
Spending too much time in front of the computer and television can cause brain fog symptoms. Likewise, working too many hours or experiencing a high amount of stress at work can lead to brain fog.
Be sure to work in enough breaks into your schedule to reduce your stress. Take at least one full day off from work each week, especially if your work involves using your mind a lot. Professions like writing, editing, and administrative work can take their toll if you do too much.
If you spend a lot of time in front of TVs, smartphones, and tablets, you should also take frequent breaks. Get away from screens that emit blue light or wear glasses that filter the blue light out. Try to reduce the number of hours you spend in front of electronics at work and home.
Get More Exercise
You may not need another reason to move more, but warding off brain fog is it. Increasing your physical activity or keeping your routine intact will help reduce cognitive stress. Exercise not only releases endorphins from your brain but also reduces stress hormones.
It’s these stress hormones that can lead to other symptoms of brain fog, such as irritability, mild depression, and mood swings. The release of endorphins and the reduction in stress hormones promote positive thinking patterns and a feeling of well-being.
Eat a Non-Inflammatory Diet
Eating a non-inflammatory diet reduces systemic inflammation that can cause cognitive problems and trigger risks for conditions like Alzheimer’s Disease. Try reducing the amount of sugar and simple carbs you consume each day.
At the same time, try to increase whole grains, fiber, fruits, and vegetables. Cut out inflammatory fats as much as possible, such as trans and saturated fats.
Several supplements can help reduce the symptoms of brain fog and mitigate its effects on the mind. These supplements include Ginkgo Biloba extract, fish oil, and l-carnitine l-tartrate. Some of these supplements help improve concentration, while others reduce inflammation.
Before starting a supplement routine, it’s best to check with your doctor. If you’re on any prescription meds, it’s possible a supplement will interfere. Have a conversation about why you want to take the supplement and see if it will be safe for you to do so.