Even the healthiest individuals can be quick to complain they’re not thinking as fast as they once did. Words and names may not come to mind as readily. And learning new tasks could become more of a challenge. Perhaps you’ve witnessed this in a senior loved one. Or maybe you’re seeing it in yourself.
Common causes or problems with memory or thinking abilities may include medication side-effects, problems with hormones, infections, or damage to brain neurons.
While research findings remain inconclusive, more scientists are studying the benefits of brain fitness games for older adults including those with dementia.
There are a lot of apps and other tools on the market that claim to help with memory training. From an app store, seniors can download apps of their favorite game shows, such as Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune and Family Feud.
Need More? 5 Free Brain Training Apps for Older Adults
- Luminosity: Over three billion games have been played by more than 85 million people
Created by more than 100 researchers from around the globe and launched in 2007, this was one of the first apps in the brain-training empire. They help older adults by providing exercises devised to improve five areas of cognitive function: problem-solving, memory, attention, speed and flexibility.
- Peak: Short, intense workouts plus a virtual coach to track your progress
Is your senior looking for something quick? Why not try mini games, which “push you hard with short, intense workouts.” These mental gymnastics help boost memory, problem-solving, concentration, language and more. Utilizing research from scientists from prestigious universities like Cambridge and Yale, Peak was rated by Google in 2016 as one of the best Android apps.
- Elevate: iPhone’s best app of the year for 2014
Elevate can set older adults up with daily entertaining-yet-challenging games to help build communication and analytical abilities. Their mini games are geared toward strengthening focus, memory, reading comprehension and other cognitive skills.
- Cognifit Brain Fitness: Brain games and more
What stands out in this app designed by neuroscientists are its specific programs to “stimulate or rehabilitate” brain function in people with conditions like dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, brain injuries and more. If you or your senior thrive on social interaction (which also can help keep your brain healthy), you can challenge friends and see how you rank in real-time monitoring.
- Braingle: Free website that provides more than 15,000 puzzles, games and brain teasers
Braingle is a place to solve puzzles, brush up on your trivia, play games and give your brain a workout. Braingle has a wide variety of offerings, including optical illusions, codes and ciphers, and trivia quizzes. You can even create your own puzzles to give your brain a super workout.
While technology may be beneficial, so too is one-on-one contact with others and the personal relationships that result. Reach out to Home Instead to learn more about how trained CAREGivers provide companionship to older adults.