A lot of people are into solving crossword puzzles. They do not only love the fun they get out of answering these games, they also like the challenge. If you were not keen about doing crossword puzzles before, but you are thinking of doing them now, you might be interested to learn that you can gain more from it than just plain old fun and excitement.
There are other benefits to answering a crossword as well and most of these are meant to help improve your mental skills. These advantages include:
- Enhancing your attentiveness and focus.
- Strengthening your memory and word recall skills.
- Enriching your vocabulary.
- Stimulating your skills when it comes to solving problems.
Crossword puzzles are also great in helping loved ones who might be suffering from dementia or Alzheimer's disease (AD). Although crosswords can't prevent the disease from happening or from worsening, they can help in lessening the effects of the disease. They are also able to aid in building up mental reserves. Solving puzzles is an activity that stimulates the brain because it is able to integrate intricacy, freshness and diversity into a person's thinking process. As a result, it is able to assist in honing the cognitive skills more. So, if you have been establishing a routine with a loved one with AD or dementia that includes answering crosswords, you could try introducing different kinds of puzzles as well. New and different games are very important factors in harnessing the mental reserves. You can try other word challenges like Word Wonder, code words or you can try some acrostics. You can even try another game for the brain like Path words, as it combines a visual perception factor into the challenge.
Not only are crossword puzzles fun, stress relieving and good for the memory, they are also able to help improve vocabulary skills. These puzzles are not easy in fact; most crossword puzzles are quite difficult and will sometimes involve things such as, small bits of research, and asking questions to get the correct answer. Once that answer is learned it will be retained in long term memory. The newly learned vocabulary can then be practiced in the everyday conversations to be had. It is important to practice these news words. Without practice these words will be lost. Another benefit of working crossword puzzles is that they can help to improve concentration. Just like the rest of the body, the brain needs exercise also. Brain exercises such as crossword puzzles can achieve keeping the brain strong and healthy. Making time to exercise the brain to improve concentration should not be difficult. In recent studies that have been completed working a crossword puzzle for fifteen minutes each day has proven that concentration improves as well as the ability to block out distractions.
If your loved one is daunted by the idea of trying a crossword puzzle, especially now that he is suffering from a memory problem, then you can help put him at ease. Introduce the following tips to him so he can enjoy his game time with you more:
- Advise him to start answering the puzzle in sections. This will make it easier for him to go through the entire crossword, instead of trying to take in everything all at once.
- Tell him to answer the parts he knows first and not to agonize over the ones he doesn't know about.
- Ask him to tell you if he gets stuck in certain parts. This way, you can help him in looking it up on the Internet. Instead of looking for the answers though, try looking for reference guides or other information regarding a clue. This will help you to remember the titbit of info for puzzles you will answer in the future, instead of just looking for the answer.
If you will answer crossword puzzles together often, you will be able to understand how a specific puzzle maker operates. This will help you understand the clues better and will make answering crosswords easier.
It’s a well-known fact that the crosswords help the mind to be sharp and sound. It has been known to have a physician prescribe them as memory therapy. Studies have shown that working these types of puzzles help to stimulate the brain cells which in return can lead to a happy, healthy and long life. This leisurely activity can help keep the mind sharp and increase memory and mental processing.
Crossword puzzles involve the brain to be active and think analytically. These puzzles force the brain to keep all of the questions to be solved and answers in the short-term memory bank. The way this works to strengthen the memory is that the answer to one question may be solved but that answer is continually being thought about while solving one of the other connecting answers. For Alzheimer's patients once symptoms have presented themselves studies have been done that support the idea of crossword puzzles improving the memory. There are documented cases where patients who have Alzheimer's start working on crossword puzzles and the memory loss and severity of symptoms is slowed.
No matter the age of a person the brain power can be increased by working crossword puzzles. Memory, vocabulary and concentration will all increase the more these puzzles are worked. Finding crossword puzzles is an easy task. They can be found in puzzle books which can be purchased in just about any store. They can also be found in the daily newspaper. This is where these types of puzzles originally got their start. If the computer is more the answer that is being looked for there are many free online puzzles that can be solved there on the computer screen or can be printed out to be solved.