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Are Jigsaw Puzzles Good For Dementia

The Benefit Of Puzzles For People With Dementia

Benefits of Dementia Puzzles

Jigsaw puzzles stimulate the mind in many ways, plus it can be a beneficial and enjoyable way for seniors with dementia and theircaregivers to spend time together. For instance, the image in the jigsaw puzzle can be a great way to remind peopleof familiar places, things and activities. This sense of familiarity isimportant for people who experience memory loss and it can spark memories recalled from the past, like the woman enjoying the Baking puzzle.

Another way jigsaw puzzles stimulate the mind is through the repeated search for puzzle pieceswith similar shapes and colors. This requires the consideration of what eachpiece looks like and some memory about which two pieces will be tried to fit together.; Jigsaw puzzles also require visual-spatial skills and organization, as the person looks at and turns pieces and determines how they connect together.

Jigsaw puzzles work both the left and right sides ofthe brain and make connections between the two sides. The left side focuses on individualparts and is stimulated by problem solving, while the right side sees the bigpicture and is stimulated by randomness. Because jigsaw puzzles allow for thestimulation of both sides of the brain, they help connect brain cells, providing a good mental workout.

“I found the 12 piece puzzles to be a first class start to get the mind working and matching up colors before form.We found that following up with the 24 piece puzzles gives the mind a good work out.”

Here Are Some Guiding Principles When You Need To Select The Best Puzzle

  • Go for a puzzle that brings back memories. Custom-made puzzles, with pictures of loved ones may be used here.
  • Set up a separate station for puzzle activities that will allow for maximum concentration and minimal disturbance, and which is well lit. Should the elderly patient with dementia get exhausted while the activity is ongoing, being able to continue from where he stops after taking some rest can help keep such and one motivated?
  • Choose puzzle activities that are fun and not too frustrating. Go for games that are challenging but not impossible to complete.
  • Start gradually. Aim to begin with simpler puzzles, and then to move on to more complex ones when completing the simpler puzzle has become easier

Surprising Benefits Of Doing Jigsaw Puzzles For All Ages

There’s a quiet movement going on in this country, and it doesn’t involve apps, data or the latest fad. Following the lead of vinyl record albums, coloring books and traditional board games, jigsaw puzzles are seeing a resurgence in popularity. Perhaps, because it’s an opportunity to unplug and give yourself and family an escape from the information overload that is buzzing through the very fabric of our lives 24/7.

Wrestling yourself away from screens, devices, even the television can be a nearly impossible task, but it’s vital to our mental and even physical health. A jigsaw puzzle requires your full attention and therein lies the magic. Everyone from tweens and teens to millennials and over-worked parents to seniors are returning to this quiet pastime of childhood. Call it a retro revolution.

Here are some benefits of puzzling that might surprise you.

  • Jigsaw puzzles exercise the left and right sides of your brain at once. Your left brain is logical and works in a linear fashion, while your right brain is creative and intuitive. When you’re doing a jigsaw puzzle, both sides are engaged, according to Sanesco Health, an industry leader in neurotransmitter testing. Think of it as a mental workout that improves your problem-solving skills and attention span. It’s no surprise that Bill Gates admits to being an avid puzzler.
  • Conversely, jigsaw puzzles are great for some needed alone time.
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    Potential Benefits On The Brain

    Studies have shown that stimulating the brain with puzzles, activities, or games, may help reduce symptoms in dementia patients.

    Dementia jigsaw puzzles may also increase motor neuron activity, and regular solving of puzzles or playing games could even help with daily tasks such as getting dressed.

    However, we must stress that there is currently no conclusive and empirical evidence on long-term benefits to the brain of puzzles and games for people with dementia and more research is needed.

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    How To Engage Someone With Dementia

    Other Puzzles

    When someone you love has dementia, meaningful activities can bring you together and put a smile on both your faces. Finding dementia friendly activities isnt always easy, but help is at hand. Here, weve rounded up our favourite games and puzzles for dementia. These can make great gifts for someone with dementia . So if youre caring for a parent with dementia, read on.

    If youve been following ElWell for a while, youll know that were big fans of Relish. Previously known as Active Minds, this UK-based company makes dementia memory games.

    Like us, the founder was inspired by his grandparents caregiving journey and their dementia friendly brain puzzles, sensory games and art and crafts bring joy and connection to people with dementia and their caregivers.

    Communicating with people with dementia isnt always easy, and Relishs games are tried-and-tested to help.

    All their products look premium and are designed to last. Their beautiful dementia products come in four stages of complexity, suitable from the early stage of dementia to more advanced dementia. And theyre suitable for all types of dementia, including vascular dementia, lewy body dementia and Alzheimers disease.

    Relish has been kind enough to send us some of their fantastic dementia games to review, and Im going to share them here. You can also get a closer look at them in the video below!

    If youre looking for more articles like this, then read our post on calming and stimulating activities for dementia.

    Recommended Reading: How Do You Know If You Have Dementia

    Brain Benefits Of Completing Puzzles

    Its easy to understand why working on puzzles is good for a healthy brain. From stimulating concentration to strengthening short-term memory, the benefits of puzzles combine to help us reduce our risk of dementia. Solving puzzles improves our spatial, visual, and cognitive abilities, using the entire brain to find solutions.

    Including puzzles as part of a care routine for someone who has already developed memory loss also has remarkable benefits for the mind and spirit. These enjoyable activities can improve brain function and stir pleasant memories from childhood. Research even shows that, among the benefits of doing puzzles, seniors with dementia can even decrease their rate of cognitive decline. Others include:

    Reviews And Stories About

    Puzzle : Springtime Cardinals 36 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle

    These puzzles are terrific! My mom, aunt and I do them together. It keeps mom engaged and smiling!

    Puzzle : Durango Express 36 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle

    I purchased this puzzle for my Dad who has dementia. I left it with him on Monday and the next day I stopped in and he had finished it.He said that the pieces were big. I asked him how long it took him to do the puzzle and he said 30 – 35 minutes. I was pleasantly surprised. This may encourage him to help my Mom put together the 500 piece puzzles. Pieces fit together very good.

    Puzzle : Candy Galore 36 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle

    This puzzle was a joy to assemble! It was difficult in spots, but the colors and image were so beautiful. I’ve been a Springbok fan for 35+ years and your quality is unmatched by “lesser” brand puzzles.

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    These Jigsaw Puzzles Are Good For Your Brain And Fun For The Whole Family

    Jigsaw Puzzles for Dementia – 35 Piece

    Little Boxes on the Hillside Puzzle.

    STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. Jigsaw puzzles are good for your brain. When solving a jigsaw puzzle, especially if the pieces are very similar, it is crucial to pay attention to details. You need to train your eyes to find the small differences in colors or shapes that will help you complete the image.

    One of the brain benefits of jigsaw puzzles is that they increase the production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood, memory, and concentration. Dopamine is released with every success as we solve the puzzle. No wonder puzzles are so much fun! Scroll below for some good puzzles and links to buy them.

    1. 1,000 Piece Jigsaw Puzzles for Adults and Teens– Little Boxes on The Hillside by Puzzledly Retailing for $22.99, this puzzle has high-gloss, perfectly-locking, vibrant puzzle pieces, made of 100% recycled materials. The interlocking pieces allow you to pick up your puzzle after completing it. Completed puzzle measures at 29 x 20. To buy this puzzle, please click here.

    Fruit Lovers Puzzle.

    2. Fruit Lovers Dream1,000 Piece Jigsaw Puzzles For $22.99, this jigsaw puzzle by Puzzedly will delight puzzle-lovers for all ages and offers 15 modern jigsaw puzzles, which teach patience, self-confidence, and self-control. Making a puzzle takes time and effort. When finishing a puzzle we feel admiration and recognition for achieving it, especially in young people. To order the Fruit Lovers Dream puzzle, please click here.

    Amazon.com

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    Different Uses Of Puzzles With Large Pieces

    Jigsaws with big pieces have a lot of applications. For example corporate events. When your company is having team-building activities or other team-related tasks, the large-piece jigsaw puzzle is a great product as they require less time to assemble and can involve multiple people. In addition, multiple puzzles with large pieces can be used as a part of the competition where the winning team that completed the brainteaser first would receive some prizes.

    At PuzzlesPrint we offer jigsaw puzzles with different piece sizes, also you can choose the material of the puzzle. Our product range includes magnetic jigsaw puzzles and plastic jigsaw puzzles, these puzzles can also be made with large pieces.

    How To Choose A Jigsaw Puzzle For Someone With Dementia

    Jigsaw puzzles are a popular pastime for many people. They are an inexpensive form of entertainment that can provide hours of challenge and engagement. They also provide a multitude of benefits including exercising visual perception and fine motor control, and practising project completion and patience. For most people, these benefits go unnoticed but for someone with dementia or Alzheimers they can be significant. It is these benefits combined with the sense of accomplishment that comes with completing the puzzle that make a properly selected jigsaw puzzle an excellent activity for someone with dementia, whether or not they did puzzles on a regular basis in the past.

    If a person did jigsaw puzzles as a hobby for a long period of time, they will probably have overlearned the skills necessary to complete a puzzle. Overlearning occurs when something has been done so often that it happens automatically, without conscious thought. These overlearned skills are often spared as the dementia progresses, and can make it easier for the person to be successful in completing the puzzle.

    When someone is a puzzle aficionado they look for the most challenging puzzles puzzles with hundreds or thousands of pieces, irregularly shaped pieces and images that have little color variation such as a lot of clouds or grass, or aspects of the image that repeat over and over. These are all ways that the person can make the activity more challenging and last longer.

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    Easy Puzzle Activities For The Elderly With Dementia

    To help you choose the most ideal puzzle for your elderly, we have curated and compiled a list of the five easiest puzzle activities

    Crossword and word search puzzle:

    Both traditional puzzle types test your knowledge and recall ability.

    It comes in varying levels of difficulties and can be played both traditionally or on a digital device.

    Jigsaw puzzles :

    Playing jigsaw puzzles activates both sides of the brain and can be played and enjoyed at any time without prior planning.

    Word Search Games:

    These games help the elderly to retain their language skills and sometimes, even encourage further learning.

    Trivia:

    Can be played on a wide variety of topics of interest. It is a great way to stimulate the mind and draw forth some laughter, especially when played with others.

    It can also be played in the form of competition increasing the feeling of reward for winning.

    Logic puzzles:

    This kind forces you to think outside the box and use the cues provided to come up with correct answers.

    They encourage deep reasoning and lateral thinking thus getting dormant neural pathways firing.

    Doing Jigsaw Puzzles How We Got On

    Are Puzzles Good For Dementia Patients?

    First we went and bought a few jigsaws from our local charity shop. We bought 3 jigsaws in total with a total spend of £3.00. There was a good selection available to buy, ranging;in;price from;25 pence up to £2.00 for a brand new, unopened one still in;its cellophane wrapper.

    The 3 jigsaws we bought;consisted of two with 500 pieces and;one with;1000 pieces.; The one we have decided to do was called The New Major by Trevor Mitchell. The manufacturer was Gibson Puzzles and it consisted of 500 pieces.

    Read Also: Do People With Dementia Sleep More

    Brain Exercises For Dementia Patients

    Robin Schiltz Caregivers

    The brain might not be a muscle, but it responds to training the same way the muscles in your body do when you lift weights at the gym. If a senior in your life is suffering from dementia and losing more and more of their memory with each passing day, it doesnt hurt to try some brain exercises . Which exercises are recommended?

    Here are some brain exercises for dementia patients:

    • Try a memory matching game
    • Do a puzzle
    • Fill out a crossword
    • Play Sudoku

    If youre looking for more suggestions on which brain exercises are best for dementia patients, youve come to the right place. Whether its your senior parent, a grandparent, or another loved one whos going through cognitive decline or dementia, these exercises create great bonding opportunities.

    Lets get started!;

    Learn A New Skill Or A New Language

    The world is your seniors oyster. In the early stages of dementia or Alzheimers disease, committing to learning a new ability, language or skill will light up synapses of your dementia patients brain that might have been inactive for awhile. Older people can sign up to learn new things through an online course or they can have an instructor come to the house.;If they arent computer-savvy, family members can help them complete the task.

    What the skill or hobby is doesnt matter as much as picking up something new. Perhaps the senior learns another language or how to play a musical instrument or even how to take photos.;

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    How To Choose Puzzles And Games For Dementia Patients

    The most benefit has been seen with the use ofpuzzles that encourage the dementia patients mental stimulation.

    Some of the symptoms of the disease can even be lowered with the help of playing puzzles and you may notice an obvious change in their behavior when you get them engaged in an activity.

    Alzheimers disease causes loss of memory and acontinual deterioration, but people suffering from it still require and benefitfrom cognitive stimulation that helps keep the brain busy and active. The adageof use it or lose it is true and even more so among dementia patients.

    You will find different puzzles that are bestrecommended for mental stimulation so you may select any type of the puzzlethat suits and fits the needs of their patients that depends on their interestand also on the progression of the disease.;

    For the patients who are in the early stages ofdementia, memory loss may comfort themselves with a 48-piece puzzle, while thepatients suffering from advanced stages may benefit from a single four-piecepuzzle. For additional cognitive stimulation, you may select puzzles withsound.

    You may see many seniors suffering from dementia are more focused and not much agitated when solving problems and facing the obstacles by themselves. For controlling sense, there are therapeutic puzzles. People with Alzheimers must have an outlet that may help them to keep them safe without the need of a caregiver.

    Can Brain Exercises Help Dementia

    Jigsaw Puzzles for Dementia – Personalised

    Among seniors, theres a theory of use it or lose it, which means that by abandoning skills or abilities through inactivity, those skills could disappear. This report from Todays Geriatric Medicine discussed the very concept.;

    According to the report, recent advances in brain science have provided clear evidence that the brain continuously shrinks and expands depending on our experiences.;

    The Alzheimers Society, a UK organization, also confirms what Todays Geriatric Medicine found. Their research shows that brain training and other areas of cognitive training can benefit the cognitive function and memory abilities of older adults. The organization defines brain training as games like bespoke computer games, Sudoku, and crossword puzzles.;

    However, the Alzheimers Society is clear that while these games can be a great way to help boost cognitive health in those who already have dementia or Alzheimers, playing brain games and mental exercises alone cannot prevent memory loss or the onset of these diseases.;

    In fact, and article in Todays Geriatric Medicine talked about how the Federal Trade Commission has issued a warning that the surge in brain-training sessions and games has resulted in fraudulent claims that have preyed on consumers fears.;

    Check out our Activity Calendar For Seniors With Dementia article for some ideas on stimulating and engaging activities to do with your loved one.

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