Have you or a loved one ever found it hard to recall little facts and details about your life? It’s natural to face memory challenges over time, but fret not: the brain can be strengthened with brain exercises, just like our body. Being mentally active sharpens our memory and problem-solving skills, keeping our brains healthy and strong.
We can use a wide variety of fun and engaging activities to improve seniors’ memory, from arts and crafts to brain teasers, and even nature walks. Here are some memory-boosting activities to try out with your family members or loved ones.
Make a Memory Bag
Memory bags are filled with items that belong to your loved ones. Taking items out of the memory bag and reliving the memories of their past can have a calming effect on them. Giving them opportunities to talk about happy times can also help jog their memory.
To create a memory bag, simply place your loved one’s favorite objects in a large bag. If an item has a scent associated with it, you may wish to spray a particular cologne or similar fragrance on the item because research has shown that scent is especially effective at sparking specific memories.
You don’t have to stop at including things you already have. Why not put some time and love into creating thoughtful items like family albums? Gather with your loved ones to compile favorite pictures into a scrapbook that you can decorate together, thereby providing them with an outlet to express themselves with their creativity.
Get into Arts and Crafts
Speaking of creating things, arts and crafts is a classic hobby to pick up. From coloring and painting, to woodwork or knitting, there’s something for everyone. Beyond being an excellent medium for self-expression and creativity, art can increase mindfulness, reduce stress and anxiety, and keep one’s mind active.
A great place to start is presenting your loved ones with simple coloring books and art supplies of their choice. As they create and explore new art mediums with every project they complete, you may even end up with a beautiful handmade family heirloom lovingly designed by them!
Take a Nature Walk
Do you know that nature walks can strengthen both your body and mind? That’s because exercise causes the brain to release a protein that encourages the growth of healthy nerve cells, and this can help you maintain memory and brain function.
Exploring the great outdoors can also help you to relax, feel more connected to yourself and your environment, and might just be a chance for you to make new friends! If you can, try taking a nature walk around your neighborhood; you never know what you’ll find.
Work on Puzzles and Brain Teasers
Be it crosswords, logic puzzles, Sudoku, or even simple jigsaws, puzzles and brain teasers are sure to fire up your brain and give you a memory workout.
Whether you work on your own or with your loved ones, puzzles can greatly improve your overall cognitive health. They can strengthen spatial skills, problem-solving, lateral thinking, recall and association, and so much more. If you or your loved ones are looking to improve your memory, do give these activities a try!