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Mentally Stimulating Activities for the Elderly

Posted on April 3, 2017 with 0 comments

There are some lucky senior adults that won’t show any signs of cognitive decline throughout their lives and then there are others that can start showing signs as early as 40 years old. Actually, the majority of senior adults will experience loss of cognitive ability as they age. In most cases, the cognitive decline is part of the aging process but there are many other cases where the cognitive decline is a sign of a more serious condition such as Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis or Huntington’s disease.
In order to remain fit for longer, you need to exercise your brain. Mental stimulation reduces your chances of developing mentally debilitating conditions.

Mental exercises engage the brain, provide lasting effects while enhancing reasoning, thinking, memory skills and processing speed.

What to Cognitive Skills include:

Cognitive skills refer to the mental capabilities of a person which allows for the processing of incoming information that is received through the 5 senses.

These skills enable a person to talk, learn, read and think for themselves. Your memory is also dependent on your cognitive skills. Your cognitive skills are also the ones which allow you to interpret images and sounds, remain focused and connect different pieces of information in your brain.

Activities that can enhance Cognitive Skills:

There are specific activities that the elderly can get involved in to improve their cognitive skills significantly.

Social Interaction:

People are likely to withdraw from social activities as they age but social interaction stimulates your mind which is why it is so important for the elderly to meet with people, share stories and keep their mind energized.
By asking and giving advice, sharing stories and learning from others, senior adults keep their minds stimulated. They strengthens their self-worth which also declines as they age.

Hobbies and Crafts:

Learning a new craft or pursuing a hobby helps keep the brain active. Such activities engage different regions of the brain and brain cells. Senior adults should find activities that they genuinely enjoy as it would help boost their self-esteem.
Certain activities can help seniors improve hand-eye coordination and retain intensive gross motor skills. Activities that involve some sort of physical movement engage the brain even more.
Senior adults who have physical limitations, struggle with shorter attention spans, arthritis and poor hand-eye coordination can still pursue arts and crafts. Participating in arts and crafts are sure to keep seniors happy.

Here’s a list of a hobbies and crafts seniors can take up:

• Drawing
• Painting
• Knitting
• Playing music
• Scrapbooking
• Woodworking
• Mosaics using tiles or colored paper
• Photograph

Games and Puzzles:

Playing games, whether it is board games or cards are an excellent and fun way to stimulate the minds of the elderly. Most games are played with others therefore always involve some sort of on-going conversation which is another benefit of playing games.
If they don’t have anyone to play with then puzzles are another way of keeping their brains occupied. Solving a puzzle leads to better memory, deeper learning and improves recall which is what makes them a great way of stimulating an aging brain. Even though puzzles do benefit seniors, playing games and interacting with others has much more value.
Here are some games and puzzles for seniors:

Types of Games

• Dominoes
• Checkers
• Chess
• Card games
• Scrabble
• Bingo

Types of Puzzles

• Jigsaw puzzles
• Crossword
• Word search
• Sudoku
• Crypto quotes

If you do not have the physical boards or puzzles, seniors can always go on the internet to choose something from a variety of brain-engaging games or downloads apps so that they can engage in them wherever they are in an easier manner.

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