What was once deemed senile is now diagnosed as age-associated memory dementia, mild cognitive impairment, or dementia. Numerous studies show 40% of Seniors over the age of 65 will have some degree of memory loss. Only five to eight percent of this age group will progress to dementia or Alzheimer’s.

Lifestyle: largely responsible for brains being healthy way beyond their eighties and nineties. Nutrition, physical exercise, and a positive attitude reputedly have big roles in healthy aging, but brains need stimulation. How to jump-start a brain? Try some fun activities, either alone or with others. Here are some suggestions from Bridge to Better Living.

Get a good night’s sleep: Seven to eight hours of sleep helps brains recoup and regenerate new brain cells. A regular exercise regime releases endorphins needed to relax and invite sleep. Build routine into each day… brush and floss teeth, take medications, and keep essentials such as car keys and money in one place. Organization gives your brain time to rejuvenate cells.

Work on sensory memory: Take daily strolls. Smell the fresh air, flowers, or the scent of a neighbor barbecuing. Enjoy neighbors, new structures where old buildings once stood, and diverse landscapes. Engage loved ones and take a drive, stopping for ice cream before returning home. Taste traditional and new foods. A Sunday pot roast or decadent dessert will stir memories. Listen to music. Play old familiar tunes. Dance as if no one is watching. Hum a few notes while going through your day. Music is often the last to be forgotten.

Socialize: The Lancet Commission reports 2.3% of dementia cases are prevented by engaging in social activities. An arousing game of poker, UNO, bridge, checkers, or dominoes increases reasoning powers and stimulates the brain’s language area as players converse. If alone, one may engage in puzzles, word games, crosswords, or sudoku.

Spirituality: also a lasting memory. Hymns learned at an early age, simple prayers, and revisiting the Bible are comforting.

Bridge to Better Living encourages Quality of Life in all stages. Their assistance in transitioning to Senior Living Options is founded on strong relationships with each client. Bridge to Better Living is a best first step and a lasting memory. Contact Bridge to Better Living today.