homecarepittsburgh

Keep your brain healthy!

In Uncategorized on July 1, 2010 at 3:44 pm

I know most of what people hear about health has to do with the body – you have to eat right, exercise, and be careful to avoid illness. But what good is a healthy body if the mind isn’t healthy too? I’m not saying that bodily health is unimportant, because it is VERY crucial, and I’ll be sure to talk more about that in the future.

But for now, let’s focus on the brain!

My inspiration from this post came from one article by Paula Camposano Robinson at Maturity Matters which you can find here, in combination with a Home Care Assistance blog post last week by Dr. Kathy Johnson, where she cites a study by Holly Bardutz here.

Basically, Robinson and Bardutz have discovered, through studies and experimentation, that keeping your brain active is very important in aging well. Makes sense, right? The FUN part, that I love, is that they actually recommend brain games as a method to keep memory and logic functioning! Bardutz recommends Sudoku puzzles, which may be one of my favorite things ever (all of my friends make fun of me). Robinson adds to the list, including things like crossword puzzles, reading (or listening to books on tape), and journaling.

Doing some or all of these things on a regular basis has been shown to improve memory, and to speed up thinking processes. According to Robinson, “Active minds stay healthy, and mental activity may reduce your risk for Dementia.” Many of these hobbies can also give you something new to talk about with friends and family! My grandma Rosemary is always reading – she loves science fiction, mostly, something that she passed down to my daddy and my little sister, and it’s a great pastime for her.

My simple tips?

  • Use the library! It’s the best way to get books for free, or books on tape if your eyesight is compromised. You can have one of your caregivers or children visit the library every few weeks if you need to, and you can even hold and renew books online.
  • Read the newspaper! Not only can you read and stay informed, but they’re also usually packed with little Sudoku games and crossword puzzles. USA Today also has a pretty readable font, as well as a page of different brainteasers that always distracted me during class…
  • Go to the dollar store! You can buy books of crosswords and Sudoku for really cheap that can keep you entertained for hours.
  • Keep a journal! It’s free and easy, and something that you and your family will love to look back on to remember all of the important times. 🙂

Online resources:

http://www.websudoku.com/ – you can do puzzles for free, or print them out!

http://www.kenken.com/ – for the math lovers!

http://northlandlibrary.org/ – for people that live locally around our office!

Have fun!

Brenna

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