We’ve all heard the saying, “Use it or lose it.” Well, this is very much the case where our minds are concerned. As we get older and become less involved in stimulating mind activities, we in essence are allowing our brain – the center of our nervous system and the most complex organ in our body – to weaken and deteriorate. This is a problem and a concern especially for senior citizens.
Our brains crave stimulation just as our bodies crave food. And it is not just intellectual stimulation that we need. New experiences that utilize all of our senses are essential for maintaining a healthy mind and can even reduce the risk, or delay the onset, of dementia.. Activities such as attending a theater performance, going to music concerts and playing thinking games such as chess, Trivial Pursuit and crossword puzzles is excellent stimulation for the brain. Receiving a massage with warm, scented oils is another great way to promote stimulation. It’s a wonderful way to relax the body while creating a new experience for the brain.
Another very important activity for the elderly is engaging in meaningful conversation. It is not uncommon for people as they age to withdraw from social activity. Encouraging social interaction can remedy this problem. Simply by asking for the advice and opinions of seniors, we not only benefit from their life experiences and wisdom, but also help stimulate their minds while communicating to them just how important and valuable they are to us.
Consistently feeding our minds, at any age, is key to keeping our brains sharp and in tip top shape.