Published on October 24, 2018

Keep your mind active

Senior doing crosswordYou know that working out your body is good for your health. But what about working out your mind?

That’s also crucial, it turns out.

“Studies show that staying mentally active as we get older can benefit our brains,” says Robin Blakley, Recreational Therapy Manager. “It may help our brains become more adaptable as we add years and help improve our memory.”

And while the final verdict is still out, some research suggests that engaging your mind may reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

So how can you exercise your mind? Try these four tips:

Do something new. Join a book club, learn how to play a musical instrument or take up a hobby you haven’t tried before, such as knitting or painting.

Raise the bar. Challenge your brain by making improvements to something you already do. For instance, do you play the piano? Then commit to playing a piece of music you love even better. Do you like to read? Then add more books to your must-read list.

Tease your brain. Do crossword puzzles or play board games that require thinking and strategy, such as chess or checkers. Try your hand at number games too, like Sudoku. 

Be socially active. Staying connected with other people as you age can also help you stay mentally sharp.

“Make maintaining a strong network of friends a priority,” Robin says. “Consider becoming a member at Mercy LIFE – West Philadelphia. The social interaction with other members is fun and good for you.”