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Activities for Senior Citizen Centers

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Brain Fitness Program to Avoid Symptoms of Dementia

Dementia is one of the biggest fears people face, as they get older. Different activities for senior citizen centers can delay or even prevent dementia,

The actual activity itself doesn’t make much of a difference.  A new activity makes the brain think about new ideas and how to apply new knowledge to the current situation.

Activities, to help prevent the symptoms of dementia, fall into three broad categories:

  • Whole body
  • Nurture
  • Creative.

Whole Body Activities

Finding age appropriate activities for senior citizen centers to run is very hard. Each person’s body will be capable of different things. Different activities can increase  brain function.  It does this by using more parts of the brain.

A few suggested activities are:

  • Walking
  • Swimming
  • Cycling
  • Gardening

People that are unable to exercise much as they get older are more likely to lose function. The part of the brain that co-ordinates muscle movements becomes flaccid. All parts of the brain are linked. This can have negative effect on social and cognitive abilities. Activities where the senior citizens can interact, making and maintaining relationships is important.

Nurturing Activities

Senior citizens who: aren’t:

  • physically capable
  • or who prefer to be indoors

Should incorporate any activity that encourages nurturing. This would be an integral part of their brain fitness program.

Nurturing activities for senior citizen centers could include:

  • Looking after a dog or cat. Many dog rescue charities will take therapy dogs to senior citizen centers. There the dogs can be petted, loved and even groomed. These therapy dogs give the older people a new set of skills to learn. Like brushing a dog or a cat. They put into practice, as well as helping to maintain the links between body and brain
  • Growing a bonsai tree. Outdoor gardening takes a lot of time and physical stamina,. Often beyond some senior citizens’ abilities. Growing bonsai trees requires more in the way of mental exercise. Working to keep them alive and pruned, stimulates the brain, but doesn’t need much in the way of physical effort.

Nurturing activities provide a target for senior citizens to focus on. They help keep symptoms of dementia at bay. Because they require long-term thinking and planning.

Creative Activities

Activities to keep the brain young are anything that requires creativity.

This could be:

  • Learning new oil painting techniques
  • Creative writing or poetry
  • Learning how to take and manipulate digital photographs
  • Taking up a musical instrument

The creative part of the brain likes to learn new information. It creates new neural pathways through the brain. Any creative activity will also be a long-term goal to focus on. As well as being a tool to keep the memory structures active to retain the newly learned information.

These provide inspiration for a range of activities for senior citizen centers.

Mental activities require problem-solving skills,.  Activities such  as crosswords and Sudoku puzzles, also help. They keep the brain active by asking it to manipulate new information.

Doing and learning something new will stimulate the brain.