Even if dementia or other cognitive conditions aren’t part of the equation, older adults and their caregivers are often concerned about memory-related issues. Although some memory loss is inevitable with age, there are ways to slow it down. Fortunately, there are fun, easy ways seniors can boost their memory. Keep reading to discover some entertaining things you can encourage your senior loved one to do to enhance his or her cognitive skills and memory-related capabilities.
1. Use Rosemary
A 2013 UK study demonstrated the power of rosemary to boost memory and alertness. The study, conducted at Northumbria University, showed inhaling rosemary boosts long-term memory by 60 to 75 percent. Researchers advise inhaling rosemary can help people remember tasks such as taking medication and sending birthday cards on time. An active compound in rosemary raises the level of acetylcholine, a brain chemical required for learning and memory.
If your loved one is experiencing memory loss, he or she can still live at home safely and comfortably with the assistance of a home caregiver. Living independently is important for seniors who want to maintain a high quality of life. For some, this simply means receiving help with tasks that have become more challenging to manage over time. Even when families have the best intentions, they may not have the time to provide the care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. If your loved one needs help for a few hours a day or a few days a week, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of respite care Colorado Springs seniors can depend on.
2. Play Brain Training Games
Just as vigorous activity strengthens the body, working the mind keeps the brain fit. Brain training programs aid in fine-tuning concentration, memory, alertness, and problem-solving abilities. They also elevate mood. A 2013 Stanford University study found using Lumosity, an app featuring a huge variety of brain training games, increased cognitive ability in those who had received chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer. Research shows following chemotherapy, people can experience cognitive impairment for years. After three months of playing Lumosity games four times weekly, subjects showed better processing speed, word-finding ability, and organizational skills.
A professional caregiver can be a wonderful game-playing companion for your loved one. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of Colorado Springs homecare. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping.
3. Listen to SPARK Memories Radio
Designed for iOS and Android mobile devices, SPARK Memories Radio is a groundbreaking music-streaming app that promotes brain function. Research shows impaired brain areas can regenerate by using music to stimulate fond memories. When seniors listen to songs from their youth, they enjoy better cognitive function, emotional health, and social engagement. Scientists at George Mason University asked people with dementia to sing favorite old-time songs regularly for four months. Subsequent tests showed progress in recollection and learning capacity.
4. Make Acronyms
Acronyms are words created by combining the first letters of several words. Here are two examples:
- ROY G. BIV – helps people remember the colors of the light spectrum: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet
- RICE – helps in recalling how to treat a sprain: Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation
Here are two sample scenarios that illustrate how you and your loved one can create acronyms to boost memory:
- While running an errand, you can make a mental list by creating an acronym. If you’re buying milk, oatmeal, rice, and eggs, take the first letter of each food item to make a new word. Your acronym could be “MORE.”
- If your loved one has a physical therapy appointment for an initial evaluation and needs to remember what to bring, use “PRIM” to remember prescription, referral, insurance card, and MRI report.
Professional caregivers with training in methods of cognitive stimulation can be a wonderful source of support for seniors. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choice, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior home care. Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives. If your loved one needs assistance with the challenges of aging, reach out to one of our knowledgeable, compassionate Care Managers today at (719) 822-1229.