Cognitive Games For The Elderly To Exercise Their Minds

  • June 11, 2020 BY  Anthem Seniors
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It’s never too late to help your senior loved one focus on their cognitive health and boost their brain function. It’s true that age plays a major role in the decline of memory and other cognitive abilities- as you age, you may find yourself or someone you love becoming a bit more forgetful, or maybe you keep misplacing things- but studies have shown that there are proven ways to work on maintaining and enhancing these capabilities at any age.

All through our lives, our brain is responsible for keeping us happy, and, as we get older, mental health plays a major role to be able to live independently. But to make sure the brain works as best as it can, the mind needs to be constantly challenged. Exercising the mind to keep it active is equally important as maintaining physical fitness and strength in older age. Just as physical exercise strengthens and trains our bodies, cognitive exercise stimulates the brain, helping it grow and develop new connections as we age.

Here are some of the best cognitive games for seniors that can help keep them sharp, help improve memory, problem-solving, creativity, and other cognitive functions. The more we challenge the mind, the more we are keeping the brain active and engaged, which can help reduce and slow down the negative mental effects brought on by old age.

Puzzles– Puzzles help older adults stretch their mental muscles and stimulate their brain function. It’s a simple way to keep one sharp. There are a range of options one can choose from- traditional jigsaw puzzles to crossword puzzles, word searches, and memory games. But do not go for games or puzzles that are too advanced or too complicated as that may frustrate your loved one, causing them to give up.

Chess & Strategy Games– Strategy games like chess can be highly beneficial for seniors as it stimulates multiple parts of the brain, and the benefits are aplenty ranging from exercising both sides of the brain, increasing creativity, to improving memory, concentration, problem-solving, reading, and decision-making skills, and most importantly, helping to prevent Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

Sudoku– This game revolves around focusing on numeric patterns and is accessible in a variety of difficulty levels. You can find this game in print form, as well as on a handheld digital device.

Word Games– Word games are an effective and fun way to engage the mind. If your older adult has enjoyed word play books in the past, such as word searches, Sudoku, and crossword puzzles, they are sure to enjoy word games. Instead of more advanced word play activities, find easier ones which can help them quite a bit.

Other activities:

  1. Arts and crafts
  2. Reading
  3. Learning a new language
  4. Fun and interactive online games
  5. Card games (Poker, Solitaire, Go Fish and Memory Match)
  6. Trivia games
  7. Botanical identification games for seniors
  8. Shopping list game
  9. Volunteering
  10. Physical exercise & healthy lifestyle

The aforementioned games and activities allow seniors to not only maintain and enhance their brain health but also overcome boredom or loneliness and engage in personal interactions. Senior Sanctuary of Anthem- an award-winning assisted living Anthem facility in Phoenix, AZ- always encourage our residents to participate in activities like these.