Jan 12, 2018 by Stephanie Howe - Owner, Comfort Keepers
5 Fun Ways to Ward Off Dementia by Keeping Your Brain Active After Retirement (Part 2)
Welcome back to the second half of our two-part series on fun ways to keep your brain active. Dementia is something that almost all older people worry about, partly because it's hard to predict when you might develop one of the better (or lesser) known diseases like Alzheimer's or Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome.
If you're worried about your mental health or have been diagnosed with something that results in dementia, there's no need to simply give in to the progression. By keeping your brain active with fun activities and memory games, you can stay alert and capable for as long as possible, especially with the help of a caregiver trained in dementia care services. In part one, we covered how you can host or join a board game group or book club to engage with other seniors in active brain games and memory practices to keep your mind sharp and today we're starting with the joys of pet ownership.
3) Pet Ownership
Pets are loving, supportive, active, and need a steady amount of care. The process of choosing a new pet requires you to take a deeper look at your lifestyle to determine what kind of pet you can support and if you'll need assistance in caring for them either now or in the future. When seeking dogs, in particular, their energetic and engaging natures make them excellent retirement companions and will keep you thoroughly connected to the here and now. The routine of feeding, brushing, and otherwise caring for your pet will help you examine your own daily habits and your pet's desire for attention will keep you constantly thinking up new ways to entertain them. With a caregiver, you don't even have to worry about the consequences of forgetfulness, as there will always be someone to ensure that your pet is fed or remind you to resume your routine.
4) Weekly Card Games
Card games are a long-standing tradition among retired people and are an incredibly stimulating way to spend your time. The kind of card games that can be played in groups often involves incredibly complex rules that must be tracked and kept in mind throughout the game. Most games also require you to both remember and guess the cards that have been mentioned, are on the table, and could possibly be in someone's hand. Canasta, for instance, is all about card strategy in which you decide what it's safe to discard based on what you think your friends at the table are collecting for their points plans. The more you play complex card games either in a group of other seniors or at home with your in-home caregiver, the better you'll become at remembering rules in the long-term and complex situations in the short-term.
Not sure you're socializing enough? There is one sure-fire way to make sure you stay engaged not only in your own life but also those of the family and loved ones you hold dear. Babysitting, either for family or neighbors, will keep you involved as part of the community but will also give you a chance to spend time with younger people. Listening to their school experiences and watching them play their favorite games will keep you connected to the modern world as it shapes the children you babysit. With the help of your caregiver, you can continue to babysit and build an engaging relationship with your younger relatives even if your mind has started to get a little fuzzy.
Keeping your brain active during retirement doesn't have to be all jigsaw puzzles and dominoes games, though those can certainly factor in if you enjoy them. There are dozens if not hundreds of ways to keep your brain in gear in entertaining and socially engaging ways, all you have to do is find the ones that work for you. If you live in the Toms River, New Jersey area and would like the assistance of a Comfort Keepers caregiver to help you stay active and keep track of important things you might forget, please contact us online or call (732) 557-0010!