A memory game forces the player to identify, store and recall information. The more the player engages in this kind of play, the more the memory muscles in the brain are activated.
There are several reasons memory games are beneficial to cognition.
When you engage in memory games, you increase the opportunity for new neurons and neurological pathways to form. As we age, our cognitive function declines. Neurological stimuli can help restore cognitive function and keep the brain sharp. Memory activities improve concentration, problem-solving and attention skills.
The cognitive decline during the aging process can affect memory by causing you to forget appointments or important events. While forgetting some things might not have a serious effect on your life, others might, such as forgetting to take your medication. Regular stimulation through memory games may help improve memory or at the very least help you remember your memory cues, such as digital reminders and alarms.
Memory games are fun activities requiring the participant to be actively engaged in the task. This ensures they keep their thoughts on the game, instead of focusing on potentially stressful situations.
Some memory games are best practiced as a group or in pairs, which allows participants to develop social skills and build friendships.
One of the important factors of good brain health is keeping the brain active. This is done through stimulating activities such as reading and memory games. Memory games are particularly effective, as they involve several brain functions at once, not just memory recall.
One of the signs of cognitive decline is the inability to remain focused on one task for long. Through memory games, the muscles associated with attention and focus are worked. The working of these muscles strengthens the ability to focus on a task for longer stretches.
Residents can opt to sign up for paid memory games. However, this isn't necessary, as many of the most effective memory games simply require a few items you may already have at home.
Jigsaw puzzles stimulate cognitive functions that improve short-term memory. This also releases dopamine, which can assist in concentration. Jigsaw puzzles also range in difficulty level, which allows residents of various levels of cognitive decline to participate in the activities. The completion of the task can also boost feel-good hormones and boost overall well-being.
Word Recall is a game that can be played in a group. The first step is to choose the category — for instance, animals. The first person starts with an animal, for instance, "snake." The next person would then have to recall the word snake and add their own animal, for instance, "horse." By the fifth round, it should sound something like "snake, horse, dog, cat, frog." The winner is the one who can remember the sequence the longest without errors.
A simple deck of cards is all it takes to play this game, which is suitable for individuals and pairs. Simply stack cards face down in rows and columns. It's advisable to use the entire deck. However, you can reduce the number of cards according to the ability of the players. In the first round, choose two cards, and if they match, you remove them from the table. Do this until you're able to pair up all the cards on the table.
In Detective Mystery, you simply place a bunch of items on a tray. Ask the participants to memorize the items on the tray within a set time limit. Remove the tray and remove one item from it, or add one to it. See who can guess which item was taken or added. The number of items on the tray will depend on the ability of the group.
Sequence repetition games can make use of coins, cards, pictures or objects. Choose around five or more items and place them down in a sequence. For instance, if you're using playing cards, you can place the cards in a particular sequence. Ask the participants to remember the sequence and turn the cards around. You can increase the intensity of the game by introducing more items such as more cards, or by decreasing the time given to remember the sequence.
Flashcards are an effective way to play picture and word associations. You can also use pictures from magazines or advertisements to play word association games. For instance, use a picture that has a few elements on the page, such as an advertisement. Cover the picture and ask participants to recall elements on the page such as the color of the item, whether there was a price listed and how many items they saw.