6 Great Games for Enhancing Memory Following a Stroke

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Senior stroke survivors must engage in challenging activities if they want to recover as quickly as possible. A stroke can have a major impact on an individual’s memory, and playing games is one of the best ways to restore cognitive skills. Here’s a look at six fun and stimulating games that can boost your senior loved one’s memory and brain health in the coming months. 

1. Scrabble

Scrabble is a classic board game that was first released in 1938, and the goal of the game is to combine tiles so they form words on the board. Playing Scrabble can enhance an array of cognitive skills, and many occupational therapists play this game with their clients. You can start your loved one off slowly by having him or her spell out names and simple words with the tiles in front of him or her. 

2. Scattergories

Many stroke survivors have a difficult time with word retrieval, and Scattergories is a great option for those individuals. During a round of Scattergories, each player must list different words that all start with the same letter. Each word must come from a specific category, and players only get a minute or two to come up with as many words as possible. For those who have severe impairment after a stroke, Scattergories Junior might be a better option. 

Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Lincoln live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or is recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life.

3. Sudoku

Studies continue to show that doing basic arithmetic can have a huge impact on working memory, and sudoku is a fun way to exercise these types of math skills. If your loved one has never played sudoku, you might want to start off with easier grids that are only three squares across. As your loved one’s mental faculties increase, he or she can graduate to larger puzzles with more subgrids. 

4. Word Searches

Much like sudoku puzzles, word searches don’t require multiple players, and your loved one will be able to enjoy them independently. Word searches can help people pick up on contextual clues and boost word recognition. A 2007 study published in Harvard Business Review revealed that word searches and other pattern-recognition games can enhance memory and trigger the production of important chemical neurotransmitters, such as serotonin.

A professional caregiver with training in methods of cognitive stimulation can be a wonderful source of support for a senior recovering from a stroke. Families looking for top-rated senior care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.

5. Checkers

At first, a game like checkers might be too difficult for your loved one because it requires fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and strategic thinking. That being said, there may come a time when simple games and puzzles no longer challenge your loved one. Before graduating to chess, try playing checkers with your loved one so he or she gets used to thinking multiple steps ahead. 

6. Connect Four

Connect Four might seem like a bland or simple game, but it can actually be very beneficial. During a game of Connect Four, your loved one will have to hone logic as well as anticipatory skills. For many stroke survivors, the tactile feedback of sliding the pieces into the tray can be stimulating as well. 

A professional caregiver can be a wonderful game-playing companion for a senior recovering from a stroke. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of Lincoln home care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping. Contact one of our experienced Care Managers today at 916.226.3737 to learn more about our reliable in-home care services.