If you experience periods of clouded thinking, slow processing, or poor memory, you may suffer from brain fog. Brain fog describes a range of symptoms related to thinking and memory. While it is not a formal medical diagnosis, brain fog symptoms can arise as a result of other conditions and environmental factors.

This article will discuss the symptoms of brain fog, what can cause it, and how to manage it. Reach out to the brain fog treatment specialists at The Hartman Center to learn more about brain fog and find relief.

What are the Symptoms of Brain Fog?

Brain fog is an umbrella term for a wide range of cognitive symptoms. Here are some of the most significant signs of brain fog.

Difficulty with thinking

If you’ve noticed that you can’t seem to focus on a topic or task like you usually could, it could be a symptom of brain fog. People with brain fog often describe being unable to maintain attention and focus or having more difficulty understanding or processing information.

Trouble with words

Brain fog can sometimes make finding the right words or understanding the terms others use is challenging. It can feel frustrating to search for the word you’re looking for–and it may make some feel self-conscious when conversing with others.

Memory loss

People with brain fog may notice that they can’t hold onto information like they used to. They may forget names, where they parked their car, or what they did earlier in the day or week. Short-term memory loss and forgetfulness may be a sign of brain fog.

Lack of organization

If you’ve noticed that more and more tasks are slipping through the cracks, you may suffer from brain fog. Brain fog can make staying organized or planning for the future challenging. People with brain fog may experience difficulty with multi-tasking and may be easily distracted by new tasks or information that comes up.

Feeling “spacey”

Brain fog can cause people to feel mentally “fuzzy” or “spacey.” Focusing, taking in new information, or staying organized may be difficult because your brain feels sluggish. Thinking can feel like a great effort, and the “spacey” feeling may make it hard to accomplish even basic daily tasks.


Brain fog can make simple tasks feel challenging because it causes feelings of disorientation. People with brain fog may be easily distracted or feel ungrounded, making it hard to stay focused on what is happening now or anticipate what will come next.

What Causes Brain Fog?

There are several environmental factors and health conditions associated with brain fog.
Here are some of the known causes of brain fog.


Are you feeling overworked, stretched thin, or have too much on your plate? Stress is a known cause of brain fog. Living in stressful environments or experiencing stressors that exceed your ability to cope can strain your body and mind and cause physical side effects, including brain fog.

Poor sleep

A lack of sleep is tough on your physical and emotional health. Your body requires adequate sleep to rest and recharge. Without getting the deep sleep you need, you’ll likely experience brain fog and other symptoms that can interfere with your ability to handle your day-to-day responsibilities.

Nutritional deficits

Your diet can affect the way your body and mind function. Long periods of nutritional deficits may contribute to cognitive and memory problems. For example, research suggests that vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to poor memory, slow processing, and other symptoms associated with brain fog.

Medical conditions

Several health conditions can cause cloudy thinking, memory issues, difficulty with concentration, and other symptoms of brain fog. These include:

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Viral infections, including Covid-19 and HIV
  • Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS)
  • Autoimmune diseases like multiple sclerosis, celiac disease, Hashimoto’s disease, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis

Medical experts believe that these and other underlying health conditions contribute to brain fog in a few ways, including:

  • Increasing brain inflammation
  • Decreasing brain energy metabolism
  • Reducing the brain’s blood flow

Managing these conditions effectively may reduce the severity or frequency of a person’s brain fog.


Some over-the-counter and prescription medications may cause brain fog symptoms. These medications include:

  • Prescription sleep medications like Ambien
  • Over-the-counter sleep aids, including diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
  • Anticholinergic drugs, including Elavil
  • Opioid analgesics
  • Prescription antianxiety medications like Xanax
  • Anti-seizure medications
  • Chemotherapy drugs

If you take these or other medications and experience brain fog, consult your doctor.

Brain Fog Treatment Options

Before you can effectively treat brain fog, you must identify its cause. If an underlying health condition causes your brain fog, treating that condition may resolve many of your cognitive symptoms. However, your brain fog may come and go as your medical condition improves or worsens over time.

Brain fog caused by a nutritional deficit may improve if you take a vitamin supplement or make dietary changes. If a medication causes brain fog symptoms, your thinking and memory may improve when you stop taking the drug.

Generally, there are steps you can take to alleviate the symptoms of brain fog regardless of its cause. These include:

  • Getting enough sleep. Aim for 7 or more hours per night. Keep your room cool and dark, and maintain a consistent bedtime.
  • Exercise regularly. Ease into an exercise routine by taking short walks every day. Increase the intensity of your activity as time goes on.
  • Eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of whole grains, lean proteins, healthy fats, and produce.
  • Manage your stress. Practice healthy coping skills like journaling, meditation, and breathing exercises to reduce your stress.
  • Stay socially active. Regularly spend time with loved ones and friends. If you can’t spend time in person, connect over the phone.

If your brain fog symptoms don’t respond to lifestyle changes, find a medical practitioner who can get to the root of your symptoms and provide effective brain fog treatment.

Find Brain Fog Treatment Now

You may benefit from brain fog treatment if you have been experiencing poor memory, cloudy thinking, or other cognitive symptoms. The specialists at The Hartman Center will explore the roots of your symptoms and develop a specialized brain fog treatment plan to help you feel better quickly. Don’t wait for the help you need. Call today to get started.