Playing games improves both the physical and mental health of seniors. In this article, we focus on some of the amazing benefits of playing games with seniors
Seniors may feel lonely and isolated because of a lack of social contact and a decline in the feeling of self-worth. Depression, anxiety, loneliness, and mental health problems are common in older adults. The CDC estimates that 7 million American people above 65 years old experience depression each year.
Playing games with seniors is one of the best options to keep them away from isolation. Gaming is not limited to kids anymore. There are numerous games which you can sit and play with seniors. Games help in relieving stress as well as improving memory and fine motor skills in an elderly person.
Playing games is an excellent opportunity to sit and spend quality time with your loved one. The seniors can have social relations with their friends and family members, which can help get rid of stress, depression, anxiety, and sadness and prevent them from isolation and loneliness.
The article discusses the benefits of playing games with seniors. So, you can continue reading the article for more information.
What Are The Benefits Of Playing Games With Seniors?
Many seniors cannot go outside because of chronic illness or mobility issues. Playing some indoor games can allow them to interact with others socially. The seniors can play cards or board games to socialize with others.
They will be away from mobile, television, email, which allows them to enjoy the company. You can connect with the people around you, which helps relieve stress and increase positivity in your life.
#2. Improves The Functions Of Brain
So if a senior person plays these games regularly, it will help enhance the function of the brain and improve cognitive skills, which helps in fighting memory loss.
#3. Boost Creativity
Kids learn various things while playing. The same principle applies to seniors. They can learn new tasks better when they are in a playful and joyful mood. Playing games can stimulate the imagination of seniors, which helps in solving problems in a better way.
#4. Brings More Happiness
Seniors can have a lot of fun while participating in games with others. A daily dose of game therapy can keep the seniors happy as well as healthy.
#5. Dexterity And Coordination
Some table games involve dexterity and coordination. It involves picking small pieces and moving them in your hand, like playing with cards or cubes, which improves the motor skills of a senior person. This is an important activity for seniors who have Parkinson’s or shaky hands.
Physical games such as tic tac throw or beach ball exercise promote motor skills and increase blood circulation, which is essential for a senior person.
#6. Improves Relationships
Sharing fun with others can increase intimacy and trust with others. Playing games is a way to break the ice with strangers and make new friends.
#7. Learn New Technologies
Seniors can learn technologies by downloading new apps on their iPad or smartphone and playing various games. One popular game is angry birds which your loved one can try.
Another way of stimulating the brain of older adults is by downloading various brain training applications from the play store like Lumosity, Peak or BrainHQ.
Benefits Of Playing Card Games For Seniors
#1. Reduces Stress
Card games help to reduce stress in seniors. Consequently, they feel both physically and mentally better.
#2. Cognitive Benefits
When a senior person plays different card games like Bridge, Gin, or Rummy, it helps sharpen cognitive functions and reduces the risk of dementia.
#3. Boost Immunity
Studies show that playing card games such as bridge can boost the immune system of senior adults.
#4. Social Benefits
Playing cards is one of the best ways to remain socially active and connect with the outside world.
#5. Physical Benefits
When a senior person holds or shuffles cards, it helps in exercising their reflex and hand-eye coordination.
Benefits Of Playing Bingo For Seniors
#1. Increases Social Engagement
Most of the seniors often struggle with isolation. They lose friends because of sudden retirement from office, or the death of any family member can make them isolated.
A bingo game is a great way to socially interact with friends or others with near and dear ones. Even the older person can interact with persons who go through the same life experiences.
#2. Decreases Risk Of Mental Illness
#3. Better hand Eye Coordination
When a person gets older, he loses coordination skills. But playing the bingo game improves better hand-eye coordination.
For instance, simple movement of the hand by placing bingo chips on the card develops coordination skills which help a senior person to do various household activities like cleaning, cooking, and various others.
Benefits Of Playing Video Games For Seniors
#1. Increases Social Interaction
Playing video games is a way to interact with near and dear ones. So it adds a benefit of social interaction.
#2. Reduces Risk Of Alzheimer’s Disease
#3. Have Fun
Elders can have lots of fun while playing video games which is good for their physical and mental health.
Memory Games For Seniors
If you spend some time with any older adult, you will notice that they tend to forget things very quickly. They are constantly misplacing their phone, their eyeglasses, and keys!
Severe memory loss can be a sign of Alzheimer’s disease, and frequent forgetting can be a normal part of the aging process.
Memory loss in older adults may not be preventable, but you can do a few things to slow down the process. Your brain should remain active like your body in all stages of life.
There are various memory games for seniors to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and declining cognitive skills. They even help in increasing social interaction which will definitely help in fighting stress and anxiety. The memory games for seniors are as follows.
Chess is one of the best board games which can improve the mental health of seniors. One can play it on the computer sitting at home or play it in the park with your friend. It improves social interaction and helps keep the mind sharp. Chess involves a component of planning ahead and strategizing that helps keep your cognitive and aptitude functions active throughout the game.
#2. Jigsaw Puzzles
Brain exercise is quite essential for older adults. One of the best ways to exercise the brain is to solve a bunch of jigsaw puzzles. You can easily buy jigsaw puzzles at any local store. They are inexpensive.
#3. Crossword Puzzles
Crossword puzzles are a way to enhance the functions of the brain. You can easily find the crossword puzzle in the daily newspaper.
These puzzles challenge people to think of a word that fits correctly based on a clue and the length of the word. You can take the help of your friends or family members while filling in the correct word. It adds a bonus social interaction angle as well!
Sudoku is an excellent game for older adults. In this game, you will find a box with a number and several blank spaces. You have to fill in the numbers according to the numbers written in the box. The sudoku puzzles are available in different levels of difficulty.
A senior person can keep the brain active by solving sudoku puzzles every day. You can easily find these sudoku puzzles in the newspaper. There are also numerous sudoku puzzles books available on the market, and they are inexpensive.
So, you can easily buy them. The puzzles are even available online. So, older adults can sit in front of the computer and solve puzzles without having to pay anything.
#5. Online Games
There are plenty of online games available on the internet that you can play to enhance the brain’s functions. You don’t have to be an expert computer user to play these games. You can easily play these games but make sure to read the reviews before playing them because some games can be challenging, making you frustrated.
Some of the popular online games to enhance the memory of an older adult person are
- Sharp brains
- Daily word search
- Brain Trainer
Bingo is one of the excellent games that can enhance the functions of the brain and improve social interactions.
Memory loss is one of the common complaints usually heard by most elder people above 65 years old. Even some go through depression, anxiety, and stress because of isolation. Playing games with others is a great way to overcome stress and anxiety. The games even help in increasing memory power.
I hope this article has given you helpful information, and don’t forget to share your experience if playing games has increased your memory power and helps you destress your body and mind.