Brain Fitness for Seniors: 3 Exercises to Improve Memory

By Published On: November 30, 2023Categories: News

Maintaining and improving cognitive health is important for many seniors and their loved ones. Brain health care is health care. It can be crushing to learn a loved one has any form of dementia. Memory decline is heartbreaking to watch, but there are ways to slow cognitive decline. Years of research show mental exercises for seniors can maintain cognitive abilities, keep senior minds sharp, and slow the onset of dementia. Let’s explore three effective exercises to improve memory and brain function in older adults.

1. Cognitive Workouts: Games and Puzzles

As we age, our bodies change, and that includes the mind. Blood flow may slow down to the brain, neurons may not communicate as effectively, and our brains actually shrink over time, according to the National Institute on Aging. Mental workouts are a major player in brain fitness for seniors. Activities such as:

  • Puzzles
  • Strategy-based games
  • Journaling
  • Arts and crafts

These are not just entertaining—they are critical in challenging the mind. These cognitive exercises stimulate brain function and have been shown to improve memory and problem-solving skills. According to a recent Forbes article, brain exercises like these challenge the brain by targeting memory, problem-solving and strategy skills, and focus—all things that challenge the brain. In a way, the brain is much like a muscle. The more you work it, the stronger it can be. In addition, these activities can bring a sense of fun and achievement to anyone participating.

2. Physical Activity

The connection between physical exercise and brain health is undeniable. For seniors, incorporating regular physical activity into their routine is possibly one of the best exercises to improve brain function. Research gathered from the National Council on Aging shows long-term fitness habits can improve immune systems, slow the biological clock, and keep brains young. The research they shared suggests exercise can help not only slow brain aging but may slow overall aging by about 10 years. However, they also suggest it’s never too late to start developing these habits and reaping the benefits. Whether you or your loved one are 50 or 70, here are some exercises that would be considered brain fitness for seniors:

  • Gentle Walks—aerobic exercise can increase blood flow to the brain.
  • Tai Chi
  • Chair Yoga—Tai Chi and chair yoga require memorization and balance skills to challenge the brain.
  • Resistance Band Workouts—Weight lifting may grow muscles and your hippocampus, according to a recent study.

These are all excellent options that promote blood flow to the brain and might improve cognitive functions.

3. Continuous Learning

Learning something new can be very stimulating for the brain. Whether it’s diving into a new book, exploring a hobby, or learning a new skill, the brain thrives on the novelty and challenge that learning provides. Learning a new skill or trying something new can encourage the growth of new neural connections and promote mental agility.

Supporting Seniors with CareBuilders at Home

If you’re navigating the care options for a senior loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s, consider the comprehensive support CareBuilders at Home offers. We have a tailored Brain Health Care and Fitness program that aligns with the needs of seniors, especially those diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Our program is designed to keep your loved ones active and independent, focusing on brain fitness for seniors through engaging activities for physical, mental, and emotional benefits.

Our caregivers guide seniors through age-appropriate exercises and mental stimulation such as:

  • Brain-Boosting Games
  • Arts and Crafts.
  • Journaling
  • Chair Yoga
  • Resistance Band Workouts
  • Walking

These activities not only help maintain cognitive abilities but also provide an opportunity for social interaction, an essential component for mental well-being. By integrating engaging activities into care, we help seniors maintain their independence and improve their quality of life.

Contact us to learn more about how our Brain Health and Fitness program can benefit your loved one.