Whether you’re a mature adult or just a big kid who dresses in a suit way more than you’d like to, like it or not, your brain is getting older. What’s more, the older we get, the more perceptible we are to cognitive decline - meaning it really pays to ensure you’re doing everything you can to keep your brain young.
That’s why today’s Foamë blog is moving its focus away from the kids and, instead, offering up 3 tips to you ‘boring’ adults - demonstrating how, with a little self-care and attention, you can keep your brain ticking as well as it always has. From fidgeting with 3D puzzles to getting a bit of good ol’ exercise, it’s easier than you may think…
Wake-up your brain
Mental stimulation is one of the most vital components to keeping your brain actively engaged day-to-day. In much the same way an athlete must regularly train to maintain their fitness and performance, regularly challenging your brain ensures it stays active and, in essence, working at its best.
This can be achieved through a variety of means, so look to find the method that best suits your interests and preferences. Puzzles such as word-searches and sudokus, for example, are great for wordsmiths and math-fanatics alike, and can often be found in newspapers and magazines you probably have lying around at home.
For the more creative types, tasks that combine manual dexterity with mental engagement are perfect for keeping the brain active. With neurological research indicating that the brain better retains memory when multiple senses have been utilised in the process, fidgeting with sensory toys at your desk or at home is a great way of collaborating your brain with your senses. This in turn helps to preserve your mental capabilities. Foam toys such as our Foamë 101 set, for example, give you the freedom of exploratory play, meaning you can be as innovative as your imagination will allow - after all, what better way to keep your brain young than letting your imagination run wild?
Look after your body
Of course, as we all get older, looking after your body becomes more and more of a necessity. However, because this is often to ensure we stay in good physical health, the mental benefits can often be overlooked.
Despite this, there is significant research to indicate that there is a direct correlation between the use of your muscles and the health of your mind. Exercise encourages the development of new nerve cells that, in turn, increase the connections between synapses, resulting in a more efficient and adaptive brain - but that’s enough of the sciency stuff!
In short, it pays dividends to stay physically active. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily have to mean an intensive workout programme - simply find an activity that you enjoy and that suits your physical capability. In addition to this, try to avoid substances such as tobacco and alcohol that are proven contributors to a range of negative mental conditions.
Keep on learning
Every time you learn something new and put that knowledge into practice, the physical structure of your brain changes - either in the organisation of its cells or through an increased number of synapses between neurons. As such, by actively learning new information regularly, you’re ensuring your brain is constantly restructuring and, as a result, remaining active and stimulated.
This doesn’t mean you need to enroll in a new degree programme, however. On the contrary, the best part about this is the fact that you can implement a desire to learn into your everyday life. Whether it’s doing some further reading around a topic of interest or developing your industry knowledge at work, look to actively seek out new information and skills that will readily assist you - to the benefit of both your intellect and mental stimulation.
So what are you waiting for? No matter your age, keep your brain young and healthy by actively engaging it wherever possible - whether that’s by taking a morning hike or fidgeting with 3D puzzles!