Jigsaw puzzles and brain teasers are a nice way to spend a rainy afternoon. But did you know that spending time solving puzzles really does show long-term benefit for seniors’ mental sharpness? Here are some of the top ways that puzzles can benefit your brain, from examinedexistence.com.
- Puzzles have been proven to reduce and even slow down the effects of dementia among seniors by stretching and molding your brain to improve the neurons in your brain – something psychologists call brain “plasticity.”
- The right and left brain are forced to work together, using both logic and creativity, to solve puzzles, offering a full brain workout and improving the connection between both sides of the brain.
- Fine motor movements are improved when working with jigsaw or other types of puzzles because of the precise movements needed to slide pieces into place. Strengthening fine motor movements is important to maintain throughout life.
- Upon completing a puzzle, the brain releases a chemical called dopamine, which produces a feeling of satisfaction. This is part of the human brain’s natural rewards system, leading you to want to complete more and more puzzles!
- Bonding happens over puzzles! It doesn’t get much easier to make friends or connect with family members than over a good puzzle. Anyone, from children to adults, can participate in putting a puzzle together and can lead to a better social connection, essential to the health of seniors.
The benefits of puzzles for seniors are great, and an easy way to improve your retirement living. Why not give it a shot… you may find yourself with a new hobby!