Dementia and an Active Brain
February 10, 2017
Home Care in Monroeville PA
Dementia is a group of symptoms which include loss of memory, judgement, and reasoning. Behavioral changes as well as lack of orientation in space and time are common characteristics. It is due to the gradual death of brain cells. The most common disease that causes dementia is Alzheimer’s. Researchers are still debating what leads to brain cell demise, but studies have indicated that keeping your mind active and engaged can slow down or even decrease the chances of developing these symptoms.
One study conducted on 2,800 individuals over the age of 65 found that those engaged in 10 one-hour brain training sessions per week for 5 to 6 weeks showed improvement in skills such as memory, reasoning and processing information. Other research indicates that increasing brain activity increases synapses and generates the production of new brain cells.
- Learn Something New. Learning a new skill has been shown to increase brain cell activity more than other brain engaging exercises. This would include learning a new language, participating in a new craft such as weaving or pottery, and taking a cooking or photography class. The trick to this activity is to make sure it is something your parent aspires to learn. These activities can be challenging and the ratio of success or persistence is lower than those activities that do not require so much concentration and time.
- Play. Brain activities that are fun are easy to incorporate into daily lives and add enjoyment—knowing they also help keep the brain heathy is one more motivating factor to including it in you parent’s schedule. These activities include board games such as Pictionary, Scrabble, Clue and Monopoly—games that take some concentration. Puzzles, Sudoku, and crosswords are other good activities to include.
- Inspired. If your parent enjoys plays or lectures, consider including these in their schedule as well. Programs at the local museum, community center or theatre offer varied brain stimulating options.
Home Care Provider
If you find it difficult to make the time to play games or attend special events or classes with your parent, consider the services of a home care provider. These professionals can spend time engaged with your parent in a multitude of ways including games that activate brain function, as well as accompanying them on daily walks—an important activity for brain health. They can provide transportation to classes and accompany your parent to special social functions, providing that all-important companionship so important to the elderly.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Monroeville, PA, please contact the friendly staff at Liken Home Care. Call (412) 693-6820 or (855) 856-0551