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Brain Exercises and Dementia

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What kinds of brain exercises should I do?

Researchers know even less about the best types of exercise for your brain. They may well vary from person to person. But the main idea seems to be keeping your brain active and challenged.

Learning something new makes new brain cells grow. You could even try something as simple as occasionally eating with your nondominant hand.

Here is some brain training you might try:

  • Learn something new -- a second language or a musical instrument.
  • Play board games with your kids or grandkids. Or get your friends together for a weekly game of cards. Mix it up by trying new games. The extra bonus of doing activities like these? Social connections also help your brain.
  • Work on crossword, number, or other kinds of puzzles.
  • Play online memory games or exercises or video games.

Simply surfing the Internet may be a great way to "stretch" your brain into new territory. By using MRI scans, researchers have even seen this activity trigger centers of the brain that control decision-making and complex reasoning.

Reading, writing, or attending local adult education classes are other great ways to keep your brain exercised.

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WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by William Blahd, MD on August 20, 2014
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