Maintaining and improving brain function in the elderly is a priority for all of us.

 MRI scans have found that using the Internet can be useful in improving brain function in elderly patients, as compared to reading a book. Even physical activity can be useful in improving brain function in elderly people. Helping grandchildren can improve cognitive abilities that are important to organizing and planning activities in the daily lives of elderly people.

 Some simple brain-stimulating activities include:

  • Playing card games
  • Taking up a new hobby
  • Learning a new skill
  • Doing word games or crossword puzzles
  • Interacting and chatting with young people, such as grandchildren, about the “good ole days” and other memories of specific times and places
  • Try video games (Yes, video games!)
  • Playing other games, such as dominoes or chess
  • Trying bowling or other active sports and exercise
  • Taking up drawing or painting

 It is never too late to begin training your brain. Mental activity is important for a healthy brain and can delay the onset of illnesses such as Alzheimer’s disease. Brain games have to include variety, complexity and diversity to be most effective and should cover memory, language, visual and spatial, concentration, attention and executive function (logic and problem solving).