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Keep on Reading to Keep Your Mind Healthy

 

Reading can be a skill, a hobby, a profession, or a passion. There are books, magazines, and journals to meet every taste and preference. Reading can transport you to different places and times and keeps your mind and imagination active. While parents often take steps to ensure their children become readers, many fall out of the habit themselves, particularly in the current digital age.

Science has found that reading at any age is important, but for seniors, reading brings powerful added benefits. Research shows reading as a key component to warding off the symptoms of memory loss associated with aging. Reading functions as a workout for the brain, physically strengthening the neural structures and keeping memory pathways open and functioning. Just like any muscle, “use it or lose it,” is true for the brain.

Intelligence and Reading

It is believed that there are two types of intelligence, fluid and crystallized. Crystalized intelligence is experienced-based knowledge used to make decisions, and pulls references from past experiences. Fluid intelligence is how you take in new information and use logic to problem-solve in new situations. As we age, our crystallized intelligence increases as we gain more experience, whereas fluid intelligence can diminish. Seniors can be at risk of making poor decisions based upon diminished ability. Some predators base their actions upon this factor alone and find seniors can be easy targets. Make reading part of your daily life to help keep your brain functioning as it should for longer.

Reading engages the parts of the brain believed to function in fluid intelligence and can aid in being better equipped in decision making. Seniors face a range of challenges in dealing with life changes, medical issues, and finances. Keeping your mind sharp assists in making good choices in the many challenges ahead.

Additional Health Benefits of Reading

New research points to additional health benefits to reading more, such as:

  • Better sleep
  • Reduced stress
  • High reported levels of happiness

Alzheimer’s and dementia involve the breakdown of neural connections and robbing your brain of the ability to relay vital information. Reading and other mental stimulation engages and strengthens these connections. This results in better memory, better decision making, and ultimately, more independence.

Regardless of the medical benefits, reading is a fulfilling hobby. With a library, reading is inexpensive and can be practical regardless of mobility and health. If your health or mobility is a concern, technology makes it possible to download the latest book onto an e-reader. Along with a home medical alert system, this new technology can be the perfect device for seniors with health issues. It is reassuring to be confident help will be on its way if a health emergency arises. Our reviews page is a great place to start reading about the benefits of a home medical alert system and the options now available.

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