Senior playing chess with children

Research Finds Games and Puzzles Help Seniors Stay Sharp

One of the biggest fears for seniors is losing their mental sharpness. And as you get older, it is almost inevitable that your brain will lose some vibrancy. To help the brain sustain its mental alertness, you need to exercise the brain frequently. A moderate regular brain workout can help against developing Alzheimer’s, dementia, or any other mental diseases.

Games and puzzles are one of the ways seniors can exercise their brains. Engaging in a puzzle is a form of mental exercise that can help you hold off the mental effect of aging. Research has shown that individuals who frequently engage in games and puzzles are less likely to have mental problems in their later years.

This claim can be backed by a study that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. According to the study, older adults who engage in mentally stimulating activities twice a week are not prone to cognitive impairment. 

To further buttress this point. In another study by BioMed, it was found out puzzles and other logic games helped the reasoning, logic, and memory of seniors. According to the study, people who received cognitive stimulation through puzzles and games have improved memories. 

Brain exercise improves the cognitive functions of seniors. It boosts the growth and survival of new neurons in the hippocampus of the brain. This part of the brain is responsible for long term memory. In what psychologists called a “full brain approach,” the neurons in the hippocampus promote a kind synergy between the left and right brain. This leads to better memory, reasoning, and deeper learning.

Games and puzzles are timeless and can be played by both young and old. They serve as a social tool for older adults. Puzzles and games encourage social interactions and communication between generations. It is always a pleasurable experience for seniors when they take part in games or puzzles. It helps them to maintain their social and communication skills.

Whenever seniors completed a task such as a puzzle, they enjoy a feeling of satisfaction. Dopamine, one of the brain’s neurotransmitter, is released. This chemical messenger is involved in memory, motivation, mental alertness, and even regulate body movements. 

Of course, engaging in games and puzzles is just one of many forms of brain workouts. There are other several pleasurable ways that seniors can use to maintain mental sharpness. What makes games and puzzles more effective are because they are naturally appealing and brain-stimulating activities. They are loved by people of all ages and have many mental, physical, and emotional benefits.

The human brain is flexible. It is malleable and can be stretched and changed. We can mold our brains when we exercise them regularly, even as we get older. One way seniors can stay intellectually active is by regularly engaging in games and puzzles.

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