If you think that your memory is not as sharp as it used to be, you’re not alone. Many people notice that remembering things becomes more difficult as they age. Luckily, you can bulk up your recall with brain exercises to improve memory.
Brain Exercises to Improve Memory
Have you ever walked into a room and forgotten why you entered? It’s a common experience. In fact, every time you walk through a doorway, your brain may purposefully forget a short-term memory. Weird, right?
Clearly, memory is mysterious and complex. There are many factors that can affect our ability to use it, including age. Some people assume memory issues are an inevitable component of their golden years; however, neurologists have discovered that memory loss does not have to be a part of aging. When it comes to memory, your brain is like a muscle: if you don’t use it, you lose it. The brain needs novelty, challenge, and stimulation to improve memory skills. Seniors who purposefully seek those things out have less of a decline in memory and can even experience improvements in memory function.
Brain exercises to improve memory are easy to do, and they can even be a lot of fun. How many of these activities can you add to your daily routine?
Try Some Online Games
Who doesn’t like to play a quick game on their phone or computer every now and then? Online brain building games are convenient, easy to use, and a fun way to kill some time. They can also improve your memory, if they’re the right kind of game. Look for games that stimulate your logical mind and force you to remember details, such as a crossword puzzle or a math-based game. Trivia games can also help your memory improve by testing your ability to recall specific facts.
One of the things that helps stimulate memory is novelty. When you work to remember new things about a new experience, your brain practices its memory skills. Try going to new places, alone or with a caretaker. When you get home, draw a map of where you went from memory, and list details about the things you remember seeing. This is a fun way to improve your memory and explore your neighborhood.
Use All Five Senses
When you’re trying to improve your memory, you’ll be even more successful if you stimulate as much of your brain as possible. Activities that activate your senses help your brain access different kinds of memory. Seek out activities that combine senses, such as a cooking class that utilizes your sense of taste and smell. Or try something simpler, like listening to your favorite music while you do a jigsaw puzzle. Combining your favorite things into memory building exercises makes them more effective, and more fun.
The Brainstorming Game
One of the best ways to test your memory is to work on your ability to recall words and connections. Play the Brainstorming Game by thinking of a word and then listing every word you can think of that is associated with it. For example, you might choose the word “bus”, and come up with words like “yellow,” “wheels,” and “school.” This can also be a fun game to play with others, either in person or over the phone.
Deal Yourself into a Card Game
Believe it or not, card games are actually a great way to exercise your memory. The images on the cards stimulate your senses, and remembering the rules tests different parts of your memory. Grab a deck and play some solitaire, or play a quick game of Go Fish with a younger loved one. A poker night with friends can be fun in-person or online, too. If you’re looking for something simpler, memory-based matching games like Concentration can also be effective.
Brain exercises to improve memory will keep your brain active, but there are other things you can do to help your recall as well. Improving your sleep and diet will also keep your memory working at its best. Keep your body healthy, and your mind will follow!
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