COVID brain or dementia
| | | | | |

COVID Brain or Dementia?

Share our stories on social media:

Is it live or is it Memorex? Remember that 1974 commercial where Ella Fitzgerald’s high note broke the goblet? Did her live voice shatter it? Or was the recorded version the culprit?

My twist on that ad: “Is it COVID brain or dementia?”

I tested positive for COVID in February. The symptoms, thank goodness, were minor. Weeks later, a “milestone birthday” came and went. Since then, I’ve noticed an increase in memory difficulties. For example, the other day I searched the kitchen for my non-stick spray. It’s usually on the counter, next to the saltshaker. But where did I find it? In a cupboard, with no recollection of putting it there.

Other examples of misplaced items include reading glasses, my iPad, papers for filing, etc. Usually, these items are right under my nose. For instance, one day I couldn’t find the two eggs placed on the counter minutes before. I was certain I had taken them out of the refrigerator. Where were they? On the counter, “hiding” behind the sugar canister.

Cooking in my Passover kitchen has been a challenge this year. Unfortunately, the Passover kitchen is not a real kitchen. That’s a big part of the problem. Located in the basement, the kitchen consists of an oven and four small tables that serve as “drawers and cabinets.” I put utensils–cutlery, the garbage can, pots and pans, plastic wrap, foil, freezer bags, ingredients—any place there’s a space. In other words, it’s completely unorganized.

As you can imagine, this is not an ideal set-up for anyone with memory issues. I can’t find what I want or need to begin cooking. What is supposed to be a calm, stress-free experience (cooking ahead for Passover) is anything but.

One day, I parked the car, trying to lock it and run errands. There I am, sitting in the car, cursing that the car won’t lock until…oops. The key is still in the ignition. Luckily, a safety feature prevents the car from locking if you don’t take out the key.

Maybe my brain cells can’t handle multi-tasking anymore. Is it any wonder I can’t remember anything given what’s going on in my head?

  • Read the text messages on the cell phone.
  • Check emails.
  • Figure out what’s for dinner.
  • Post pictures on Facebook for a friend.
  • Study the new mah jongg card.
  • Take out chicken and soup from the freezer for Friday night dinner.
  • Return library books.
  • Get gas and groceries.
  • Follow up with the package that never arrived, etc.

What is going on?

If multitasking isn’t the reason for these memory issues, is it COVID brain or dementia? Maybe a combination of both? Are my brain cells dying too rapidly?

COVID brain, one hopes, is not permanent. But dementia runs in the family. My paternal grandfather, Joe, was “senile,” the term used back then for dementia. My dad was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia. Many aunts, uncles and cousins on Grandpa’s side had dementia.

My odds don’t look too good, do they?

This fear is always in the back of my mind.

It’s a fear I, unfortunately, cannot seem to forget!

Please leave your comments below.

Read more by Eileen Creeger.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. The thing I really love about this is that it makes ME feel normal! It’s like you’re telling my story. Thx for sharing. I love it. Linda