Top 4 Best Memory Improvement Games

Table of Contents

Although it is a natural, organic storage device, our brain can be compared to the digital storage devices we have today – flash drives, external drives, memory cards, and etc.

In fact, it is more powerful than them.

According to research, it can store up to 2.5 petabytes of information, which is more or less equivalent to three million hours of surfing the web.

However, absorbing all the information is another story.

Over time, our brain’s ability to retrieve data deteriorates.

That said, we have to do something to keep it sharp and active.

Of course, you can consume natural, organic products like virgin coconut oil to keep the brain in shape, but we’re hoping that this list of brain games can be of great help in improving your memory and keeping your mind sharp.

 

Crossword Puzzles

 

Believe it or not, crossword puzzles remain the go-to exercise for many.

But the problem with crossword puzzles as a brain game is that you might become too good at them.

If that happens, you will not be giving yourself the challenge you are looking for.

Then again, you can always play around with other puzzle games like word-search.

That way, you can still keep your brain entertained and engaged.

The Benefits of Crossword Puzzles

  • They prevent Alzheimer’s disease. According to a research done by the Alzheimer’s Association, playing crossword puzzles every day can significantly keep the brain sharp and active, especially as you age.
  • They encourage bonding and socialization, especially when done in groups. Simply said, when solved by groups, crossword puzzles can strengthen social bonds and improve thinking.
  • They introduce us to new words. Whenever we solve a crossword puzzle, chances are, we are introduced to words we never heard of. As a result, we tend to think outside the box, making us forget about our problems and let us relax for a little while.
  • They ease boredom. If you feel bored, anxious, or depressed, normally, you grab the newspaper and find the page that contains the crossword puzzle. Once you start playing it, you keep your mind active while in place. If you don’t like the thought of solving one, just give it a try. You’ll eventually get hooked!

How Crossword Puzzles are Played

Honestly, if you want to succeed in playing crossword puzzles, you have to know that the answer is already in front of you, only that it is defined.

In this puzzle, each crossword clue is a definition of the answer you are looking for.

What you have to do is figure it out. How?

  1. Read the clue again and again.
  2. Find out how many letters make up the answer.
  3. Solve that damn crossword.

 

Jigsaw Puzzles

 

To improve short-term memory, jigsaw puzzles are the best games.

If you are wondering why the reason is simple.

The brain needs to sort the different shapes and colors to create one bigger picture.

So, the more the pieces, the more effort the brain exerts.

But playing with jigsaw puzzles offers rewards.

By putting a piece in place, a substance called dopamine is produced, which is known to improve concentration.

The Benefits of Jigsaw Puzzles

Another good thing about jigsaw puzzles is that they actually have therapeutic benefits.

These are:

  • Improves Self-Evaluation. Putting up the pieces is a great exercise in assessing personal choices. You know that each piece belongs to a certain place, so you can’t force another piece into it.
  • Enhances Learning Skills. The more you play a jigsaw puzzle, the better you become at recognizing colors, shapes, and form. Once you become good at it, you are actually improving your basic learning structure.
  • Betters Problem Solving Abilities. Putting the pieces together to make up one picture includes rotating and trying every piece. By doing that, you are actually tapping into your ability to recognize patterns and shapes in a vast world, however, in a calm environment.

How to Solve a Jigsaw Puzzle

Now, how do you solve and assemble a jigsaw puzzle?

  • Begin by separating the pieces by colors. If its pieces come in the same colors, examine the shadows and the shades.
  • Sort the puzzle pieces by shape. This will speed up the next steps.
  • Start putting the edge pieces. These are the puzzles that fit in the corners. You will easily identify if a piece fits the corner by just looking at its shape.
  • From the edges, assemble the jigsaw. Focus on the picture and use the piles you sorted in the first and second steps. Your puzzle should grow from there as you connect across and vertically.
  • You will easily identify if a piece fits the corner by just looking at its shape.
  • From the edges, assemble the jigsaw. Focus on the picture and use the piles you sorted in the first and second steps. Your puzzle should grow from there as you connect across and vertically.

 

Sudoku

 

Are you fond of numbers?

Then Sudoku might just be the brain game for you.

By keeping several numbers in your mind while mentally calculating their placement in a grid, you are actually working your brain.

Yet, keep in mind that this game is just like crossword puzzles.

Once you become a master of it, the less challenging it becomes.

Therefore, you might need to try something new soon.

The Benefits of Playing Sudoku

Whether it’s played online or on paper, this game can benefit people of all ages.

It basically trains the brain to perfection!

  • Improves Problem Solving. This type of puzzle can be very thought-provoking. Not only will you need to match the numbers, you also have to make sure it the series makes sense and it fits.
  • Encourages Mental Solving. Sudoku is a challenging brain game that hones your cognitive skills. It lets you familiarize numbers and improves your mental mathematical skills.
  • Teaches Us to Be More Patient. We don’t always succeed at playing Sudoku. More often than not, we undergo trial and error, teaching us to be more patient and just never give up.
  • Sharpens Memory. It is never easy to remember a number in a column, a row, and a box. But this game is all about it. Therefore, if you succeed in it, you have polished your memory and remembering skills. And if you do it repeatedly, you are sharpening your short-term and long-term memory.
  • Allows You to Focus. Playing Sudoku helps you focus your attention. If you stop while in the middle of the game, you know that you will have to re-think the whole placement of numbers again.

How to Solve a Game of Sudoku

If you enjoy brain exercises, you might want to give Sudoku a try.

Don’t worry if it involves numbers. In time, you will get a hang of it.

Here’s how you solve it.

  • The grid has nine boxes. In each box, there are nine smaller boxes that you need to fill with numbers. But don’t fret. Some of the squares already have numbers. They serve as your clue.
  • Fill in every square with a number from one through nine.
  • Make sure the numbers do not repeat within a box of nine.
  • Check if the numbers are not repeated down a column.
  • The numbers should not be repeated in a row as well.

 

Chess

 

While the origins of chess are not clear, it’s unarguable that chess is, by far, the most mentally challenging game ever introduced, although newbies usually depend on short-term memory to assess their next move during a tournament.

The experienced and master players have already their own strategies, which involve the use of long-term memory.

The Perks of Playing Chess

Just like other brain games we mentioned above, playing chess comes with perks.

Here are some of them:

  • It raises IQ levels. In one study that involved 4,000 Venezuelan students, it was found that moving the pieces around can somehow raise IQ levels. After 4 months of playing, the participants showed significant increases in IQ scores.
  • It prevents Alzheimer’s. The brain is like a muscle. That means it needs exercise to keep it healthy. If you don’t use it, chances are, it will lose brain power. Now, do you have a reason to play chess?
  • It improves memory. The rules of the game must be remembered. Aside from that, you have to take note of your opponent’s game play to think of a strategy and win.
  • It enhances problem-solving skills. Because the game is complex as is, playing it significantly improves problem-solving skills.

How to Play Chess

Learning how to play this game is easy.

Here are the basic steps.

Learn how to setup the chess board.

Every chess piece has to be arranged the same way as your opponent’s.

Basically, the second row should be filled with pawns.

The rooks must be positioned in the corners, the knights beside them, then the bishops, the queen, and the king in the final square.

Familiarize how each chess piece moves.

  • The King – Although it is the most important piece, it is the weakest. It only moves one square at a time, in any direction – side, diagonal, up, or down.
  • The Queen – Among all chess pieces, the queen is a piece to be afraid. It can move in different directions it likes, as long as it does not touch any of its own color. It can move forwards, backward, diagonally, or sideways.
  • The Rook – Like the queen, the rook can go as far as it can, only that it can move backward, forward, and sideways.
  • The Bishop – The bishop can also go as far as it can, but it can only move diagonally.
  • The Knight – The knight has the oddest move among all. Its movement is in the shape of an “L”, two squares in a certain direction and another one at a 90-degree angle.
  • The Pawn – At first move, the pawn can move two squares. After that, it can go only a single square forward. It cannot move backward as well.

Know the special rules involved in the game.

  • Promoting a Pawn – If a pawn reaches the opponent’s side of the board, you may promote it to any useful piece. Usually, it is promoted to a queen. Take note that it’s only the pawn that can be promoted.
  • Castling – One popular, special chess rule is castling. It allows the player to do two crucial things in just one move – secure the king and get the rook into the game.
  • En Passant – In French, “en passant” means “in passing”. Technically, a pawn may take two squares forward during its first move. If by doing so, the pawn lands on the opponent’s side, the other pawn may capture it right away. But note that this move can only be done immediately. Otherwise, the move will no longer be valid.

Learn the basic chess strategies.

In a game of chess, there are four important things to know.

These are:

  • Protect the King – You may get the king to one corner of the board. That is where he is usually safer.
  • Save Your Pieces – Do not lose your chess pieces. Each one of them has a role to play and you can’t win the game without their help.
  • Take Control – As much as possible, gain control of the center of the board. Use your pawns and your remaining pieces. Once you have control, you can easily move around and make it hard for your opponent to score against you.
  • Play with All Your Available Pieces – Your chess pieces will be useless if you just let them sit back in their original spot. Use them on the board and think of a decent strategy to defeat your opponent with them.

Practice. By playing chess, again and again, you will get better at it.

It won’t matter if you play online or at home.

The point here is that it will help you improve mentally.

 

Conclusion

 

In a world where aging is normal, the need for these sorts of brain games is really vital.

But then again, it doesn’t mean you have to go through a lot of boring stuff.

Obviously, brain games are fun.Not to mention, it is good for the brain, as well!

Not to mention, it is good for the brain, as well!

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