As we age many of us find that our memory just isn't is good as it used to be. Our minds aren't as quick because we don't exercise those brain "muscles" the way we did when we were in school. How often do we adults make the time to read a book out-loud or play a strategy game? How often do we attempt to add, subtract, multiply or divide without a calculator? Although these things have been proven to work the mind in healthy ways, we don't usually make time to play games or read books. It's always work, eat, sleep and work again. Run, run, run.
WonderBrains wants to encourage our customers to exercise the mind through childhood and beyond. Yes, there are diseases and conditions such as Alzheimers and dementia that will generally only effect some seniors, but memory loss can happen at any age. Our memories often worsen as we get older because we neglect the exercise that our brain needs to stay healthy. These days the most common way we deal with memory loss is by purchasing some type of device that does the remembering that we don't want to do. We don't need to remember phone numbers or important dates or places because our PDAs and cellular phones do that for us. Here's the problem; if we don't exercise our brain by working to remember the small stuff, then eventually we might not be able to wrap our mind around the big stuff.
Most doctors and fitness gurus agree, the keys to a healthy lifestyle are: eating a balanced diet, getting daily exercise, reducing stress, and maintaining a positive attitude. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 7-9 hours of sleep a night is also a must. Did you know that lack of sleep can actually destroy brain cells? Doing drugs or consuming too much alcohol are also sure-fire ways to kill off brain cells. Most of us know the basic ways that we can maintain a healthy lifestyle, but when it comes to maintaining brain power we tend to fall short. We need to exercise our brain to keep it healthy, lively and focused, and WonderBrains is here to help.
When talking about this kind of brain power the real "man behind the curtain" is the prefrontal cortex. This part of our brain has many important functions: memory, decision-making, planning and judgement. These are normal, even basic functions that we take for granted - until suddenly, one or more of these abilities are gone and we can't remember! Or even remember to remember! In order to improve memory and sharpness we must exercise, or activate, that prefrontal cortex. We have to make the time to make a difference. Don't worry, activating the prefrontal cortex is a LOT easier to do than it sounds.
There are several things we can do in our everyday lives to exercise our brain. For instance, when seeing or hearing an important number for the first time, memorize it. Try putting the numbers into a melody or rhythm. Also, when meeting a new acquaintance repeat their name several times in conversation after being introduced. How do you do Dave? It's nice to meet you Dave. Dave, what do you do for a living? Have a nice day Dave. etc. This simple repetition is great calisthenics for the brain. Another suggestion, reading street signs and billboards as we zip by them is another great brain work-out. The vehicle operator can play too, but be sure to keep the main focus on safe driving.
WonderBrains would like to suggest some fun and creative ways to approach and explore exercising our amazing minds. Check-out one or more of the items listed below, because playing games (especially math, logic and strategy games), solving brainteasers, and constructing puzzles are all excellent ways to activate the prefrontal cortex. So start playing!