As people age, they experience many changes both physically and mentally. Keeping the mind sharp is one of the most important aspects of continuing to live a vibrant and healthy life.
In this blog, we will look at how the aging process affects the mind and provide some great tips on how to keep it as keen as possible.
Does the Brain Change as We Age?
As people get older, brain volume tends to shrink, which can lead to nerve cells getting smaller or losing contact with other nerve cells. In addition, blood flow in the brain tends to slow down a bit as we age. Even though older people go through these physical changes, significant memory loss is usually not the norm. Seniors who actively work at keeping their mind sharp can live a long life with no perceivable changes to their cognitive abilities.
How to Keep an Older Adult's Mind Sharp as they Age
Here are some great ways to keep an older person’s mind engaged during their senior years.
Stimulate the Brain
Keeping engaged with mentally stimulating activities is one of the best ways to keep an older adult’s mind as sharp as possible.
Develop a Regular Exercise Program
Exercise not only brings numerous benefits to a person from a physical standpoint, but also mentally as well. Physical movement helps optimize blood flow to the brain and decreases the risk for conditions such as high blood pressure. Exercise also naturally releases endorphins into the brain, which promotes a sense of contentment and well-being.
A Healthy Diet
People usually connect maintaining a healthful diet with physical wellness, but it also has a great impact on mental fitness as well. Vitamins such as E, B and omega-3 fatty acids can decrease the chance of dementia and leafy vegetable and certain berries are neuroproductive. Limiting sugar intake by using sugar substitutes is also beneficial of senior’s overall health. On their own, many senior adults will not consistently eat a well-balanced diet, so it is important for their loved ones to help them accomplish this.
Frontier’s Award Winning SPARK™ Program
At Frontier, we utilize the award-winning SPARK™ program to help our residents stay active both physically and mentally. Based on the teachings and research of Maria Montessori and Dr. Cameron Camp, the SPARK program gives our residents the opportunity to stay engaged with a wide variety of interesting and fun activities.
Whether it be working in the garden, brewing beer, maintaining bird feeders, dancing, flower arranging, attending Yoga classes, participating in our Greatest Artist Series, playing outdoor bingo or games with high school students, volunteering at horse stables, interacting with animals, going on supervised walks in nature, or spending time with some wonderful pet therapy dogs, SPARK offers something for everyone.
At Frontier, our mission is to help seniors live their later years in great health and with a sense of meaningfulness and purpose. If you would like to learn more about our award-winning SPARK program or how we can assist you in the effort to keep your older loved one’s mind as sharp as possible, contact us today. We invite you to visit one of our beautiful properties, take a tour and speak with our compassionate and experienced staff.