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Dementia: How Playing Games May Help

Posted Jan 08 2010 12:00am

A study in the journal called Neurology reported that playing many of our favorite cognitive activities such as games and puzzles could help us slow down the onset of dementia. 

We've discussed this type of research before but I love any research that gives us something we can do NOW to possible prevent dementia.  Most of us are in the midst of handling dementia now so this proactive view is always good to hear.

The study centered on a large group of elderly persons and looked at how frequently they participated in these 6 activities:

  1. reading magazines, books or newspapers
  2. doing crossword puzzles
  3. playing board games
  4. writing
  5. playing music
  6. having group discussions

What they found supports other studies that we have seen over the last few years:  keeping active with cognitively stimulating tasks such as the ones above, may help delay the signs of memory loss.  The study focused on both the number of activities the participants did as well as the frequency.

The study is called, "Cognitive Activities Delay Onset of Memory Decline in Persons Who Develop Dementia" and a summary can be found in the Neurology archives .

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