By Heidi Moawad, MD

Heidi Moawad is a neurologist and expert in the field of brain health and neurological disorders. Dr. Moawad regularly writes and edits health and career content for medical books and publications. Overcoming visual or spatial neglect can be one of the biggest challenges in recovery. Mood affects stroke recovery and a stroke affects mood, so attention to depression and anxiety is a necessary part of the healing process. Once the body stabilizes, usually with close medical monitoring and a degree of medical management, the brain begins to heal. Medical management is primarily focused on preventing worsening progression of the stroke.

Because the brain is enclosed in the skull, there is not much space to accommodate swelling. Thus, the edema that develops after a stroke can compress the brain, resulting in increased intracranial pressure and causing stroke symptoms to worsen, sometimes temporarily. They come on suddenly and evolve dramatically over the first few hours. Over the following days, the injury and disability from a stroke usually reach a maximum peak and then stabilize.

Brain foods

Rebecca uses meditation as a way to check in with herself too. ‘If you get the urge to go off and do something else or if your mind wanders – you can bring yourself back to the present and only focus on what’s happening in that moment. Nadia says she practices mindfulness throughout the day to make sure her head is where she wants it to be. ‘This alone can heighten stress levels and cause you to feel less motivated to do much else.

brain feels like mush

You should not ignore your symptoms because if left untreated, brain fog can impact the quality of your life. Once the underlying cause is addressed, your mental clarity can improve. Generally, increased stress is thought to worsen symptoms in people with chronic illnesses. Managing stress can look like practicing meditation, spending time with loved ones, or seeking mental health support. Also, take care to stay hydrated and eat at regular times.

That very thing you set out to do; the promise you made to yourself. What if you can’t?

Try not to think ahead to the next step while you’re working. This can help prevent panic and make it easier to move smoothly from task to task. Depending on your preferences, these foods may have a lot of sugar, or empty calories. There’s nothing wrong with having a treat, and any kind of food is better than no food.

Regardless of whether you’re dealing with mental or physical fatigue, exhaustion could make you turn to comforting or soothing foods, especially those that are quick and easy. You probably don’t have any trouble recognizing when you’re physically exhausted. Your limbs might feel heavy, your eyes droopy, your energy zapped. But knowing when you’re mentally exhausted can be trickier. Together, the symptoms a person may experience are called antidepressant withdrawal syndrome (AWS). Abruptly stopping an antidepressant may make a person more likely to experience brain zaps and other symptoms.

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In the meantime, Dr. Khandelwal says it’s helpful to create a new routine to help your life feel full and “normal,” rather than a series of days spent in a fugue state. It’ll help you better adjust to (and accept) your new normal for mush brain what it is. It is up to you to determine what works best to help you manage your symptoms of brain fog. If you know that the fog will only be temporary, such as in the case of sleep deprivation, then you don’t have to worry as much.

  • What you see on Instagram isn’t a true reflection of everybody’s mindset – and you’re definitely not the only one with ‘brain fog’.
  • Once I created these lists and used them to cultivate an inner awareness that depression was controlling my brain, I started to get better.
  • Being aware that they are a side effect can help a person avoid anxiety.
  • This liquid helps keep the brain from touching the bone of your skull.
  • Although withdrawal symptoms are common, it is important to tell a doctor about them.

“When you’re able to recognize all you have going on and can value the importance of maintaining balance, you are in a better position to avoid mental burnout,” MacCutcheon says. It can help to take a step back and explore some ways to set aside time for all aspects of your life. She recommends giving yourself time each day to engage in activities that bring you joy and give you energy. Doing so can help you recharge, prevent overwhelm, and reduce your risk of becoming too stressed to function.

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