Why The Elderly Should Engage In Solving Hard Puzzles


People from different cultures and age groups love puzzles. Solving hard puzzles is entertaining, fun, and a mentally challenging hobby. Research studies have consistently indicated that puzzles have numerous emotional, physical, and mental benefits, especially to seniors. For those living with dementia and memory loss, it can be difficult to come up with activities that will make them feel relaxed and productive. Many are times when caregivers will try meaningless pastime activities in an attempt to stimulate their brains. However, puzzling stimulation is one simple solution that will bring happiness and other benefits to seniors. Some of the other main benefits of solving puzzles among seniors include

Brain Workout

Solving a hard puzzle involves both the right and left sides of the brain, which provokes a tough mind workout. The right side of the brain processes thoughts, creates sensitivity and acts as the creative part of the brain. On the other hand, the left side of the brain helps in logical reasoning and executing various commands. Seniors involved in solving 1000 piece jigsaw puzzles engage both sides of their brains resulting in a powerful brain workout.

Retaining and Enhancing Cognitive Skills

Intelligent quotient varies from one person to the other. However, it is worth noting that an individual can improve his/her intelligent quotient. One of the ways involve solving hard puzzles. Studies show that solving various puzzles for at least 90 minutes every week can significantly improve intelligent quotient. Some puzzles, such as animal planet games help in enhancing reasoning skills for the elderly and play a vital role in enriching memory power.

Enhancing Visual and Spatial Insight

To solve a 750 piece jigsaw puzzle, an individual should be able to pick small objects and figure out where they fit in a bigger picture. The process may involve scanning shapes, pictures, colors, and sizes of objects. Such activities improve spatial recognition, which helps in activities such as driving, packing, and using maps.

Enhancing Problem Solving Skills

Like any other person, seniors are conflicted by various situations in their lives. Unfortunately, as humans get old, these skills deteriorate. However, by solving sports or crossword puzzles, the elderly can improve or maintain their reasoning and critical-thinking capacity.
It is common knowledge that solving puzzles involve coming up with creative solutions, brainstorming, and critical thinking. The whole thought process involved gets the seniors into a habit of thinking of coming up with the best solutions to life problems just as they do with the puzzles. The same applies to young people who are risk takers. If an individual is consistently solving hard puzzles, there is a high chance that he/she will be able to solve various problems in life due to enhanced problem-solving skills.

Medium for Socializing

The benefits of socializing, especially to the seniors, are endless. Most of them tend to feel lonely and alienated when they are alone. They want someone to engage them and to do an activity with them. In most cases, solving hard puzzles is a group activity. When seniors solve puzzles in a group, they get opportunities for cherishing accomplishments, associations, communications, and creating new relationships.

Help in Therapeutic Meditation

Therapeutic meditation helps in the psychological relaxation and development of brains, even at old age. Various research studies have been quoted highlighting that puzzles help in activating brains while at the same time putting them into a meditative state. If seniors are consistently engaged on sports board games, they will activate both the right and left hemispheres of the brain leading to emotional relaxation and therapeutic meditation. It is important to highlight that emotional relaxation and therapeutic meditation improve self-confidence and productivity.
It is clear that there are several benefits that seniors will gain by solving puzzles. Engaging in such activities helps the brain, improves social interactions, and improves critical thinking.

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