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4 Ways Card Games Can Boost a Senior’s Mental Health

There’s a good reason you often see people over 65 playing card games with their peers. Card games are a fun and mentally stimulating activity that can be done anywhere and anytime. The staff at Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care in Westfield, NJ, discusses 4 ways playing cards can help keep your senior loved one’s mind active and sharp.

1. Prevents Cognitive Decline 

Playing card games can help your loved one stave off memory loss. With regular stimulation from playing cards, your loved one’s brain will continue to create new cells that grow stronger neural pathways. The more brain cells produced, the more your loved one can prevent cognitive decline.

2. Relieves Stress 

As your loved one ages, his or her body may have difficulty regulating stress hormones. As a result, he or she may develop higher doses of cortisol, a stress hormone that damages and kills cells in the hippocampus, an area of the brain responsible for memory. Too much stress can cause premature brain aging. However, playing cards encourages feelings of confidence and relaxation, which helps reduce stress hormone levels and keeps the brain sharp.

3. Increases Socialization 

Playing cards not only stimulates the mind, but it can also help your loved one remain social. Socialization does more than prevent depression and anxiety. It can also help your loved one remember things with greater ease and think more clearly. When playing card games with others, your loved one is limiting the amount of time his or her brain is left unfocused, which can help prevent diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s.

4. Encourages Quick Decision-Making 

When your loved one plays card games, he or she will need to make decisions pertaining to how he or she plays a hand and determine what the opponent’s next move will be. Your loved one’s brain will be challenged and active. Playing these games and making new decisions can increase your loved one’s level of brain growth as well as the number of connections in the brain.

At Home Care Assistance, we believe participating in mentally stimulating activities is crucial for a senior’s wellbeing. That’s why we created the Cognitive Therapeutics Method, an activities-based program designed to slow cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. In addition to Alzheimer’s and dementia care Westfield, NJ, families trust, we also offer specialized Parkinson’s and stroke care. For more information on our elderly care services, please call 908.450.9400 to schedule a complimentary consultation.