Can Playing Board Games Really Improve Your Elder Care for Your Parent?
March 23, 2016
Elder Care in Atherton CAPlaying board games with your aging parent might seem like a great way to add some entertainment to your elder care routine. What you might not realize is that this activity can also be a great way to pursue your care goals. April 13 is Scrabble Day, the perfect day for you to explore these benefits and integrate them into your regular routine with your loved one.Whether your parent plays with you, his elderly health care services provider, or the entire family, board games are a fantastic way to stimulate your loved one's mind and boost his spirits. Playing these games on a regular basis can encourage better relationship and improved quality of life. Some of the ways that playing board games can improve your elder care for your parent include:
- Social interaction. By their very nature, board games encourage social interaction. These games support your parent spending more time with you, your children, his care provider, or friends. This social interaction boosts his emotional health, strengthens his memory skills, and supports ongoing cognitive strength and functioning. This helps to reduce feelings of isolation, depression, and anxiety.
- Memory skills. Playing board games is a nostalgic activity. Your elderly parent might remember playing favorite games with you when you were young, or even with his siblings, friends, and parents when he was young. Triggering these memories helps to keep his emotional health high as well as sharpening and supporting his memory skills for slowed memory loss. The actual act of playing the games further supports memory skills. Your senior has to remember how to play the game, encouraging his mind to work throughout the experience.
- Wards off cognitive decline. Just like your parent needs to work her muscles regularly to keep them strong and healthy, he must also work his mind. Playing board games is a fun form of mental exercise that helps to keep his mind stronger and more active. This supports faster cognitive and memory recall, faster responses, and clearer judgement. Playing regularly can even help to ward off the development of Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.
- Reduced stress. Playing board games is a wonderful way for your parent to spend time with others and to get his mind off of issues that bother him. This reduces stress and eases tension and anxiety. By maintaining a greater sense of calm and control, your aging loved one can stay healthier and more active throughout his aging years.
- Healthier body. Playing board games such as Scrabble, Monopoly, and Clue are not just about having a stronger, healthier mind. This activity can also help to support a stronger and healthier body as well. Playing board games lowers blood pressure which in turn helps to protect cardiovascular health and ward off potentially dangerous issues such as heart disease and stroke.