Much has been written about the role games might play in protecting a senior from memory loss or slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease or a related form of dementia. According to the experts from the Alzheimer’s Association, keeping your brain active and engaged may help guard against mental decline. Some researchers even believe stimulating brain activities can aid in generating new brain cells.
What memory games are available for people with dementia?
There are a variety of memory games for dementia patients that you can use yourself or share with a senior you love.
Memory Games for DementiaHere are a few brain stimulating games you and the older adults in your life might want to consider trying:
- AARP Game Center: One of the best and most comprehensive game sites on the web is put together and hosted by AARP. Here you will find everything from online jigsaw puzzles to brain health crossword puzzles.
- Picture Games: BrightFocus Foundation has a variety of memory games for dementia on their site. The Picture Game and Match the Picture are good ones to try.
- Card and Board Games: The Alzheimer’s Store offers a variety of card games and board games you can order to play with a loved one who has dementia.
- Staying Sharp: This site is home to what are promoted as “science-based activities” that involve the five pillars of brain health. Games range from sleight of hand activities to navigating your way through an online maze.
- Counting Backwards: Another brain stimulating activity that requires no internet access or special supplies is counting. But instead of counting forward, begin at the number 200 and count backwards subtracting 3 each time you do.
- Do the Opposite Day: Try performing your normal tasks with the opposite hand and completing them in a different order than you typically do. For example, brush your teeth and comb your hair with your left hand instead of your right.
- Mind Games: The free games on this site range from math to puzzles, word games and Sudoku. A few of the most popular ones include Brain Racer, Connect 10, Brain Shapes and Rapid Math.
- Lumosity: This brain fitness program is home to over 50 cognitive games. Participants first complete three games to obtain a baseline score for their memory. Then they can track their progress as they work through the memory games.
- Puzzle Books: Old-fashioned crossword and word search puzzle books might also help keep your brain in good shape. A few of the advantages these books offer is that they are inexpensive and easily portable. You can work them wherever you are whether it is waiting in a doctor’s appointment or your favorite chair in the living room.
- Word Games: Word games for seniors, such as hangman and Boggle, can be played in large groups or small groups. These games exercise the mind and encourage seniors to retain their language skills.
Are Puzzles Good for Dementia Patients?There are many benefits of puzzles for seniors with dementia. Puzzles provide dementia patients with mental stimulation as well as comfort, and can potentially ease some of the symptoms of the disease.
To learn more about aging and Alzheimer’s, we invite you to peruse the Elmcroft Senior Living blog. We have helpful articles ranging from The Therapeutic Benefits of Dementia Gardens to Journaling to Relieve Caregiver Stress.