Top Memory Games to Exercise the Mind

While physical exercise and daily movement are key to living a healthy life, mental exercise for brain health and dexterity are equally as important and games are one of the most effective and entertaining ways of get your mind and memory in shape.  

A recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry associated activities like reading books or magazines, playing board games or cards, or even betting on horse racing with a lower risk of dementia in older adults. We’ve come up with a list of favorites – some we’re sure you’ll recognize.

Memory – Certainly, you remember Concentration, the old game where you flip over two cards at a time in order to see if you made a match. The key is to remember which cards you flipped over already, what was on them, and then remember them for future turns. This is a simple and easy to set up game that can be played on a coffee table and is enjoyed by people of all ages so play with the grandkids if you can.

Online Chess – Chess is a fantastic game for exercising your brain. It incorporates strategic thinking – trying to stay 2-3 moves ahead of your opponent. The great thing about online chess is that you don’t need a partner to play. You can choose to play against a real person or a computer.

Lumosity – This is a popular game among seniors that can be downloaded right to your smartphone. The games are short but exercise different brain processes. They do get harder as you advance, so if it seems too easy, keep going, eventually you’ll find a level that is challenging.

Scrabble – If you enjoy word games, Scrabble is an excellent brain game that can be fun and challenging. It requires word finding and spelling skills along with creativity. Play with friends or download the Scrabble app or even Words with Friends – to play online!

If space is an issue or you don’t like playing games on a phone or computer, you can still enjoy good old-fashioned paper and pencil games like crossword puzzles, soduko, or word search games. Adding memory games to your daily routine should be fun, easy, and budget friendly. If you don’t like the first game you pick, keep going until you find one you like. The goal isn’t for it to be easy; you should find something that challenges you and makes your brain work.


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