One of the most irritating aspects of growing older is when we begin to lose cognitive function. Sometimes it’s a sign of dementia or Alzheimer’s, but many times it’s something much simpler and easier to correct. Think of it like a tool you haven’t used in a long time. Suddenly you need to pull it out of the toolbox only to find that it’s rusted with time.
Usually, there is an easy fix unless it’s gone unused for so many years that the rust has eaten into the metal. As you approach senior years, don’t let that brain go rusty! You might not be working anymore but you still need your brain to live a quality of life. You can promote better and ongoing cognitive health in one or more of the following ways.
1. Join the 21st Century
You are living in an age when you have an amazing amount of technology at your disposal. Do you have Internet access? If so, there are many resources and apps online to help improve memory function. From apps that check memory function to brain teasers that keep you on your mental toes, you can exercise the grey matter by keeping those neurons traveling around in the areas of the brain responsible for memory.
2. Understand How Pain Affects Mental Clarity
As we age, pain becomes a part of everyday life we must learn to cope with. Oftentimes it’s a result of degenerative bone disease common in seniors. Most common issues are pain in the back, hips and knees. According to Rishin Patel Insight, pain affects our brains in more ways that we know. As a renowned anesthesiologist and spinal pain specialist, Dr. Patel says that seniors can live a better quality of life with greatly improved cognition if they find effective pain management strategies.
3. Stay Actively Social
Even if you have to force yourself to get out and about, leading geriatric specialists advise patients about staying social. Join clubs, go to lunch with friends, attend senior day centers or even take a walk through the park with an old friend. Don’t separate yourself from society because that can lead to depression which, in turn, can affect cognition. Don’t live in a fog. Get out there where the sun is shining!
4. Don’t Forget Those Brain Foods!
Then there is nutrition. How many times in your life have you heard it said that “Fish is brain food”? That is because of all those Omega fatty acids. Not only are they powerful amino acids but they are even mightier antioxidants. Even your brain needs to be ‘washed’ of toxins which have built up, so always plan a diet rich in antioxidants proven to keep those toxins flushed from every cell in your body. In this case, it would be the brain that is ready for spring cleaning.
From the foods you eat to the activities you are involved in, remember that your brain is an essential tool. Keep it sharp and clean and it will serve you yet for years to come. Don’t ignore symptoms like pain which can affect mental clarity and always seek medical advice at the first signs of forgetfulness. It’s your life, so take the bull by the horns and be proactive. You can do more than you know, so what are you waiting for? Get up and do it!