Brain cells can form new connections and revitalize the aging brain. Recent research studies, show this is a key to aging gracefully. A brain fitness program can improve or alleviate the decline in the thinking processes associated with aging. The brain has the ability to constantly form new connections between brain cells. These connections are called neurons. This means that the brain has the ability to change throughout life, whenever something new is introduced and memorized.
The Brain and Overcoming Damage
The brain can also overcome damage due to illness, injury, or trauma. With the help of a rehabilitation program, people with brain injuries can regain lost functioning and learn new skills.
This process is known as neuroplasticity. Through repetition and practice, it's possible for the brain to reorganize itself in response to a challenge or difficultye brain is capable of overcoming damage, and recent research shows that the brain can be trained to become more resilient.
A healthy lifestyle, plenty of sleep, and physical activity are all important steps in helping your mind stay sharp over time. Engaging in activities that stimulate the brain — like puzzles or games — can also contribute to keeping your brain ercome damage from a stroke or head injury by reorganizing and forming new connections between neurons.
In order to successfully reconnect, the neurons need to be stimulated through physical and mental activity. Mental exercise actually strengthens the connections and helps protect important brain cells and functions.
Did you know that your brain is composed of different areas and functions? Did you know you can strengthen them through mental exercise? Research show that brains that are not used or stimulated with new information and experiences will actually become like an unused muscle of the body. It becomes weak from lack of use.
Implementing a brain fitness program
This is why mental exercise, such as reading and doing puzzles or games, can be so beneficial. Mental stimulation helps to keep the brain in excellent working condition by rewiring and forming new connections between neurons. This strengthens existing connections, leading to improved cognitive function including memory and problem-solving abilities.
The short-term benefits of brain fitness are improved concentration, memory and sustained mental clarity when under duress. The long-term benefits of brain fitness are the creation of multiple new connections.These new connections develop what is known as a “brain reserve”.
This assists in protecting us against potential problems such as Alzheimer’s or dementia. Research studies suggest that individuals who exercise their brain throughout their lives have a 40% less risk of manifesting Alzheimer’s. There are many things that affect our brain cells and fitness. To age gracefully, there are steps you can take to improve your brain function everyday.
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Brain Fitness Includes Stress Management
The first step to successful aging begin a brain fitness program is to avoid stress and anxiety. These emotions waste mental energy and distract us from achieving our goals.
Another important part to a successful brain fitness program is to avoid a mundane and routine existence. Our brains require stimulation and introduction of new things to learn. Simply put, we should challenge ourselves to do new and different things often. Take time to try something different everyday. It may be as easy as taking a different route to work, talking to someone new.
Many think that doing crossword puzzles or Sudoku is enough of a challenge. Not so! When we do something regularly, we are only exercising one part of the brain. Just like your body needs different exercises for specific parts of the body, your brain needs different areas exercised as well.
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When considering a brain fitness program, you should remember that something new, challenging and different is always a good thing.
We also need to learn how to effectively manage stress and anxiety to prevent“brain drain”
Stress and anxiety have very negative effects on the brain. The hormone released when we are stressed and anxious actually reduces and destroys the neurons and increases the rate of brain cell death. Chronic stress and anxiety can actually impair the brain from developing new neurons. The result is a decrease in the ability to retain new information and decrease in our ability to adapt to new situations.
There is good news. The negative effects of chronic stress and anxiety can not only be stopped but also reversed. Steps should be taken to identify the psychological or physical source. Once the source of the stress is identified, steps should be taken to sufficiently reduce the reaction to the stress. Exploring techniques by managing the unavoidable stressors we face, we can proactively protect our brains.
Brain fitness guidelines include exercising the brain so that new connections are formed and strengthened. To implement these guidelines, one must force themselves to focus and pay attention, develop purposeful processing techniques to incorporate the information you are receiving, as you try new and varied challenges in life. It is never to late to implement a brain fitness program and start aging gracefully today!
Watch this video to learn more about The Benefits of Brain Exercise
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