Games To Improve Brain Function


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Brain Age Concentration Training

Should YOU try memory training games?

Brain Age Concentration Training is a brain training and mental fitness system for the Nintendo 3DS system. It includes a huge number of games to hone your concentration, memory, calculation, and other brain skills. It’s fun, portable, and challenging. Brain Age is also available for the Nintendo Wii U, but not for the Switch, Nintendo’s most up-to-date gaming system.

Video And Computer Games

When you hear discussions about the impact of video games, its usually in relation to violence and negative impacts. But did you know video games can be very helpful for boosting cognitive function?

Particular types of video games can have positive benefits on the brain. Action games can help improve your ability to make quick decisions or focus on an important object. And racing games help improve eye-hand coordination.

There is even a 2018 study that looked at the benefits of cognitive and emotional training in healthy adults.

Nintendo Brain Age: Concentration Training

Brain Age is a puzzle video game for the Nintendo 3DS. The game was designed to stimulate and improve players working memory and concentration, and based on the work of Ryuta Kawashima, a Japanese neuroscientist.

The games range from math problems to card matching and adjust dynamically based on your real-time results.

Super Mario 64

Playing three-dimensional video games like Super Mario 64 improves both spatial memory and recognition ability, according to a 2017 study. The game encourages exploration within the 15 worlds of the game, where the player encounters obstacle courses, hidden objects, and puzzles as well as the enemies Mario must confront.

3D games might help stave off mild cognitive impairment, due to increases in gray matter volume in both the hippocampus and cerebellum.

Nintendo Wii


World of Warcraft

Why Brain Games For Adults

Youve probably seen advertising from different companies, claiming their games or brain training apps are the best way to keep your brain healthy as you get older.

Turns out, scientists are divided about the legitimacy of those claims.

In 2014, two opposing groups of scientists came out with letters arguing 1) no scientific basis for the efficacy of brain training and 2) evidence for the brain training effect was plentiful.

So if even large groups of scientists cant agree, how do we know if brain games can help you keep your gray matter fully functional?

As I researched this post, what I found over and over is this: brain training games may be effective, but so are other cognitive pursuits.

The key to maintaining brain health as you age is to consistently learn new things.

Games for the brain can be a fun way to keep your brain engaged. So lets look at the best brain training games, what makes them great, and how you can even get some of these brain training games for free.

Well break them all down into categories, including both online and offline games, as well as our favorite brain training apps .

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Can Brain Training Games Improve Brain Health

Brain training games or computerized cognitive training consisting of programs of games designed specifically to exercise memory, attention, speed, flexibility, and problem-solving have become increasingly popular in recent years.

In 2018, according to the market research firm SharpBrains, people spent $1.9 billion on digital brain health and neurotechnology apps. Makers of these popular brain-training games claim that they can help ward off cognitive decline by keeping your brain sharp.

Scientists remain skeptical about how effective these brain-training games really are in improving brain health.

Few studies can show that getting better at a brain game transfers to everyday activities of daily living, says Kimberly D. Mueller, PhD, an assistant professor in the department of communication sciences and disorders at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.

That said, just like playing regular games, it is a vehicle for learning something new or challenging your brain, says Dr. Mueller. Based on what we know about how the brain works, learning new things with repeated practice, or challenging the brain in new ways, can strengthen connections between the neurons, or brain cells, adds Mueller.

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My Kid Loses It When He Loses Games

These Brain Games May Improve Cognitive Function

It is well known that kids with ADHD struggle with low-frustration tolerance, especially when losing.

When an ADHD child loses, they have an intense negative emotional reaction for a variety of reasons.

  • lack of emotional regulation skills
  • history of failure

Because of this, for a child with ADHD, losing can feel overwhelmingly defeating. Their intense emotions often lead to behavioral problems that can hurt them even more.

This lack of emotional regulation can hurt their social interactions.

Unfortunately, teachers and parents of children with ADHD often believe that poor reactions to losing are willful when theyre not.

They mistakenly push the child to continue playing a losing game or remove them from the game until they can learn to behave.

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It Can Strengthen Your Brain

A healthy brain can develop your skills better and can help you to improve your memory. Playing brain games for long stretches of time can strengthen your brain and train your memory. There is good evidence that playing games like chess and puzzles can strengthen your brain.

It can improve your spatial awareness, memory, and thinking skills. Playing games can help you to develop better problem solving skills. This is why brain games are considered to be one of the best ways to train your mind.

Mind Games: A Mental Workout To Help Keep Your Brain Sharp

Lifestyle habits matter when it comes to brain health, and the rewards of increased mental stimulation can be seen in a very short space of time

Sharon, a 46-year-old single mother of three teenagers, came to see me about her increasing forgetfulness. Working full-time and managing her household was becoming overwhelming for her, and she was misplacing lunchboxes, missing appointments and having trouble focusing her attention. She was worried because her grandmother got Alzheimers disease at the age of 79, and Sharon felt she might be getting it too just a lot younger. I said it was highly unlikely that Sharon was suffering from early-onset dementia, but I agreed to evaluate her.

Whenever I consult with people about their middle-aged pauses, I first check for physical conditions or medication side-effects that might be affecting their brain health. Left untreated, high cholesterol, hypertension and other age-related illnesses can worsen memory, increase the risk of dementia, and shorten life expectancy. I also review their daily lifestyle habits to see if there are any areas they can improve to boost their brain health.

Unfortunately, despite compelling science that everyday behaviours can improve memory and lower dementia risk, most people find it difficult to change old habits. However, the challenge becomes much easier when people understand the link between everyday behaviour and brain health, set goals that are reasonable and receive feedback that motivates them.

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How Often Should You Practice Brain Training

According to the American Psychological Association, people begin to see cognitive decline in perceptual speed quickly comparing symbols, figures, or numbers for patterns beginning in their 20s or 30s. People who participate in brain games for a few hours a week have experienced lasting benefits. Research suggests that once people learn to have better control over their attention and mental processing abilities, they can apply what they learned from the brain games into day-to-day activities.

Many Older Adults Enjoy Brain Games Like Crosswords Chess And Computer Games But Can They Help Improve Memory

Brain Exercises – Weird Memory Games To Improve Your Memory

If you are like many adults, you enjoy a good crossword, a weekly card game, or even the latest addictive phone app game. You probably even relish the mental boost they provide.

But do these types of brain games help with brain health, especially for protecting against memory loss? Well, it’s complicated.

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Brain Games For Adults

While there are options to play most of these types of games and puzzles online or on your device, you might want to stick to the traditional forms.

Why? Because the social aspect of the games makes them more powerful by getting together with a friend you can boost the brain-health factor.

Lets start with a classic game for brainy people.


When you think of mentally challenging and complex games, chess is probably one of the first that comes to mind. Garry Kasparov, Bobby Fischer, some of the greatest players of all time prove that chess is a game of strategy and concentration.

The game of chess helps train your working memory and improves your brains executive function as you plan and strategize. It also improves fast decision-making, while honing your concentration.

Crossword Puzzles

When it comes to minimizing cognitive decline, crosswords have been declared the go-to solution. These puzzles contribute to the development of memory and attention skills, as well as increased fluency .

Like all the games and puzzles well cover today, if the puzzles start feeling too easy its probably time to switch to another brainy pursuit. For example, if you usually play American crosswords you might try switching over to the British style to test your true riddle- and puzzle-solving skills.

No matter their difficulty level, crosswords are known to encourage cheating but if you cheat youre not getting the brain exercise you think you are!

Jigsaw Puzzles


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Its also important to keep your emotional intelligence sharp by engaging in conversations where you evoke and attune to the emotions of others. Take time to have a meaningful conversation with a loved one and improve your emotional intelligence by observing and asking how they feel during the conversation, says Schewitz.

This card pack is filled with stimulating questions like Whats something that youll never try again? or What have you lost since childhood that youd like to regain?

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What Types Of Brain Game Programs Work Best

Think twice before shelling out a lot of money for fancy brain training programs. There is not enough evidence for any of the currently available products to say which would work best, according to King. In fact, none of the major products that claim to improve your memory or intelligence have received FDA approval, and only a very small number of products are currently pursuing FDA approval, he says. Stick to these healthy habits proven to boost your brain health, instead.

It Can Stimulate The Brain

15 Working Memory Brain Games: Improve executive function in 5 minutes ...

Playing brain games can stimulate the brain to increase the activity of the brain. Our brains are constantly in a state of stimulation because we live in a fast paced world. You must always be aware of your surroundings and alert about the people around you.

It will boost your brain activity and can lead to the development of your prefrontal cortex. The benefits of the prefrontal cortex are related to the ability to plan, engage in reasoning, and to think flexibly. There is a lot you can do to stimulate the development of the prefrontal cortex.

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Math Brain Booster Games

Math Brain Booster Games consists of different mind games to improve brain function and stimulate the mind to improve overall performance. Customize your Personal Training mode and have your own mental productivity session anytime, anywhere. Train your brain! Improve attention, reaction, and velocity of the mind with timed math problems and tasks. Your results will then be used to personalise daily workouts, including puzzles, memory games, problem solving games, logic games and critical thinking games.

Focus On Another Person

The next time you interact with someone, take note of four things about them. Maybe you observe the color of their shirt or pants. Are they wearing glasses? Do they have a hat on, and if so, what kind of hat? What color is their hair?

Once you decide on four things to remember, make a mental note, and come back to it later in the day. Write down what you remember about those four details.

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Interactive Metronome & Adhd

The idea behind the use of a metronome is that it supports the reregulation of the brains internal clock.

Within the temporal lobe , is our internal clock.

Proper function of the internal clock supports language development, motor coordination, and healthy responses to sensory input.

Those with ADHD are notorious for time blindness. That means those of us with ADHD struggle with time management in a way that negatively impacts life.

This can look like:

  • sensory processing,

Further, this applies to adults with ADHD and other cognitive challenges.


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What The Brain Needs Most Is Something New Every Day

Lumosity Review – How Lumosity Brain Games Improve Brain Function

One reason brain games don’t always prove effective in studies is many don’t challenge the brain enough. “Many lack the complexity and level of engagement that charges the brain forward,” said Stacy Vernon, M.S., LPC, a clinician with the Brain Performance Institute and The BrainHealth Project at the University of Texas at Dallas.

This is because the brain thrives on regular challenges. “If you want to be proactive about brain health, the most consistent advice is to learn a new thing every day,” Seitz explained.

That may sound extreme, but the objective is to keep challenging the brain, especially when you get good at something. Once that happens, try another activity that forces you to start over and be challenged by something new. Learn a new instrument or a new language. “It’s the challenge, not just the activity, that’s the most important thing,” Seitz said.

The best way to know if you’re being challenged? Messing up. “If you’re making mistakes, correcting them, and improving that’s the activity you should be doing for your brain,” Seitz concluded.

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What Are Memory Games

Memory games are a fun method of exercising your mind to improve your memory. Like our bodies, the brain needs regular use to stay healthy and sharp.

Memory games challenge the mind and help the gray matter in our brainsthe part that impacts memoryto grow and expand. Research has shown that just 15 minutes each day of brain training can improve brain function (via

How To Play Games With Adhd Kids

This is a recipe for disaster that can lead to further negative effects on that childs emotional regulation skills.

So, why use games with your ADHD kid, if its only going to lead to meltdowns?

The objective of playing ADHD games is to work on improving the executive function skills that ADHD child lacks. In this case, frustration tolerance and emotional regulation would be the objectives.

Most often, this means the rules of the game need to be modified in order for the ADHD child to take their next step.

Lets look at an example using a fun and engaging card game you may have heard of, Spot It.

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Can Brain Games Reduce Age

Age-related cognitive decline is another area where brain training games could actually have some positive effect, research shows. In a decade-long clinical trial conducted by Advanced Cognitive Training for Independent and Vital Elderly , participants still benefited from the memory, reasoning, and speed of processing training five years later. Better yet, some people benefited from the speed of processing training 10 years later. Ready to get started? Practice these 15 habits by age 50 to save your brain at 80.

Rate Your Memory Baseline

15 Working Memory Brain Games: Improve executive function in 5 minutes ...

In my book, 2 Weeks to a Younger Brain, Gigi Vorgan and I describe the scientific evidence that lifestyle habits matter when it comes to brain health, as well as 14 days of strategies and exercises to get readers started on a brain-healthy lifestyle they can continue for the rest of their lives. You can try it for yourself by assessing your baseline memory and checking it again after learning some of the techniques.

Below is a list of eight unrelated words. Set a stopwatch for one minute to study the words. Then spend 10 minutes doing something else. Then write down as many of the words as you can remember, for your baseline memory score:

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Brain Exercises To Boost Memory And Cognitive Function

In addition to following the aforementioned healthy lifestyle habits, you can also keep your mind and memory sharp with exercises to train your brain and you dont have to break the bank to do so. While there are scores of computer games and apps that promise to enhance cognitive function, there isnt any definitive research that shows these products have significant neurological benefits for older adults. A meta-analysis of eight clinical trials published in February 2020 in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews found that while computer cognition training was associated with small, short-term cognitive benefits, theres not enough high-quality research to support the use of brain games for preventing dementia or improving long-term cognitive function.

Health experts recommend sticking to brain training that involves real-world activities instead. Exercises to strengthen brain function should offer novelty and challenge. Almost any silly suggestion can work, says David Eagleman, PhD, a neuroscientist and adjunct professor of psychology and public mental health and population sciences at the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute at Stanford University in California. Drive home via a different route. Brush your teeth with your opposite hand. The brain works through associations, , so the more senses you involve, the better.

  • Create word pictures. Visualize the spelling of a word in your head, and then try to think of other words that begin with the same two letters.
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