Growing older does not mean that you will automatically lose your memory or other thinking skills. There’s a lot you can do to keep your mind healthy. Regular physical activity, a healthy diet and mental exercises may help keep your brain and memory working. Prescription medications or disease can contribute to a marked decline in mental abilities. Older people are more likely to take medications for chronic conditions than younger people. In some cases, a drug (or a combination of drugs) can affect your mental abilities. Certain diseases that are more common with ageing, such as Alzheimer’s disease, can also be the underlying cause of loss of brain function. Check with your doctor to make sure cognitive changes, such as memory loss, are not a side effect of medication or associated with an infection or illness.