10 Proven Ways in Gilbert, Arizona to Keep the Mind Sharp as You Age

It’s extremely important to practice healthy aging throughout your life even well into your golden years. At our Gilbert, Arizona Surpass Senior Living communities, it’s a priority for us to make sure your loved ones are staying sharp. From exercise and nutrition to intellectual stimulation, we make it our focus to incorporate these aspects into our residents’ daily routines. And, even though our priority is with your loved ones, it’s never too late to start stimulating your own mind!

  

1. Exercise for a healthier mind

Your mind and body are interconnected so, often, what benefits the body benefits the brain. Regular exercise, even taking a simple walk, goes a long way toward improving your memory care and cognitive skills, according to Dr. Scott McGinnis, an instructor in neurology at Harvard Medical School.

In fact, the foot’s impact during a walk sends pressure waves through the arteries, increasing blood flow and resulting in a healthier mind, according to researchers at New Mexico Highlands University. Try adding some of these physical activities to your daily or weekly routine to boost blood flow to your brain: 

  • Hiking on nearby Arizona nature trails
  • Tennis or pickle ball
  • Walking your dog
  • Water aerobics

 

2. Read for intellectual stimulation

In a study in the journal Neurology, regular reading and writing in late life reduced the rate of memory decline by 32%. 

Here are ideas to get reading more often:

  • Join or start a book club through your church, temple, or local library or book store.
  • Read to your grandchildren, whether  in person or via FaceTime or Skype.
  • Subscribe to a magazine or newspaper.
  • Set aside a time of day for reading.
  • Read only what you like — it’s OK to give up and choose something else.

 

3. Eat healthy to stimulate your brain

You may know that nuts, fish, and red wine have been linked to a healthy brain. For an extra brain boost, try including these foods in your diet, suggests Healthline:

  • Salmon is filled with Omega-3 fatty acids, major building blocks of the brain.
  • Green tea improves alertness and focus. It’s rich in polyphenols and antioxidants, and has been linked with a reduction in the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s.
  • Eggs have many nutrients tied to brain health such as B6, B12, folate, and choline. Choline helps create a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine, which helps regulate mood and memory.
  • Blueberries have antioxidants, which have been shown to improve communication between brain cells, delay short-term memory loss, and reduce inflammation.

 

4. Strive for good posture

If your mother or teachers told you to sit up, they were right to — maintaining an upright posture improves circulation and blood flow to the brain. Here are three ways to improve yours:

  • Sleep with your spine aligned: Sleeping on your back or side is generally less stressful on your spine, according to Cleveland Clinic. In back sleeping, gravity keeps your body centered over your spine. If you sleep on your side, keep your head in neutral posture with your chin straight ahead.
  • Improve your balance: Staying balanced reduces the risk of falls and benefits the spine. Try online or in-person yoga for beginner’s classes to improve balance.
  • Maintain a healthy weight: Carrying extra weight adds stress to your muscles and makes it more difficult to maintain proper posture.

 

5. Get plenty of sleep to improve memory

Sleep problems can lead to trouble with memory, concentration, and other cognitive functions, says the National Institute on Aging. Memories and newly learned skills move to more permanent regions of the brain while you sleep, according to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF). This makes them easier to recall.

Adults 65 and older should aim for seven to eight hours of sleep, says the NSF. If you’re between the ages of 26 and 64, the goal is to get seven to nine hours of sleep.

Do you want to ensure you’re getting the best sleep possible? Here are some tips to help:

  • Stay consistent: Pick a bedtime and stick with it — a routine will help you sleep better overall. This also includes setting a regular time to wake up on weekends.
  • Avoid heavy food: Large serving sizes can irritate your stomach causing you to lose sleep. Instead, when you’re hungry at night, have small snacks like nuts or slices of fruit.
  • Limit stimulants: Try to avoid coffee, cola, cigarettes, and chocolate for up to four to six hours before bed.
  • Limit alcohol: Alcohol disrupts REM and slow-wave sleep, which are important for memory. It’s best to avoid alcohol four to six hours before bed.

 

6. Play games or draw

Paint, color in an adult coloring book, or grab a pen and paper and draw. Whether it’s a masterpiece, or a mere doodle, making something artistic is a creative workout and an intellectual activity for the brain.

Games are another excellent and simple way to sharpen and stimulate your mind. Here are a few fun games for your brain: 

  • Sudoku
  • Chess
  • Scrabble
  • Trivia

 

8. Listen to music or play an instrument

Many people in Arizona find listening to or playing music enjoyable, but that’s not the only benefit — it also improves memory function in older adults, according to a 2019 study in Frontiers in Psychology. Finding your favorite tunes, or learning to read or play music is easier than ever thanks to versatile platforms and technology:

  • YouTube: A classic way to search for your favorite songs, music videos, or instrument tutorials. You can listen to your favorite songs while learning to play them.
  • Spotify: A popular platform that includes new and older songs from all around the world. Create playlists easily, and listen to your favorite songs anytime you want.
  • Pandora: Stream music for free and check out new artist or song recommendations. You can easily discover new music based on artists you already like and build your catalog.
  • Take Lessons: Schedule a lesson online or in-person with an instructor at a price that works for you. Group lessons are available too, so you can learn with loved ones.

 

8. Learn a foreign language to boost cognitive functioning

Even if international travel isn’t in your plans, learning a new language can be beneficial. It improves cognitive functioning in older adults, according to a review of several studies in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.

 

9. Find a new hobby to strengthen your brain

Learning a craft or skill can stimulate your mind, relieve boredom, and liven up your daily routine. Many local Arizona colleges and Gilbert senior centers offer engaging, low-cost lectures and classes for older adults. Whether you’re learning a new recipe, beefing up your computer skills, ongoing education is a surefire way to stay sharp. What interests you?

  • Carpentry
  • Sewing
  • Gardening
  • Cooking
  • Knitting
  • Photography
  • Fishing
  • Golfing
  • Swimming

 

10. Write frequently

Writing improves working memory and communication abilities. In the end, it doesn’t matter what you decide to write because simply expressing yourself will boost your brain activity.  These 9 easy writing exercises can jumpstart your creative energy. Have fun, and enjoy a brain workout by writing one of the following:

  • Poetry
  • Creative stories
  • Song lyrics
  • Hand-written letters
  • Emails
  • Blog posts
  • Cards

 

Source: https://www.aplaceformom.com/caregiver-resources/articles/sharp-mind/

Although there are no clinically proven ways to reverse the course of brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, these tips may help combat normal, age-related mental decline. By continuing to find unique ways to stimulate your brain, you increase the odds your brain will thrive for years to come. And, if you are looking for memory care for yourself or a loved one, in Gilbert, Arizona, consider giving us a call at Mariposa Point Surpass Senior Living.


Difference Between Assisted Living and Nursing Homes for Covid-19 in Gilbert, Arizona

When it comes to staying safe from Covid-19, while also choosing between assisted living and nursing homes, our Mariposa Point Senior Living Community in Gilbert, Arizona is one of the choices you can make for peace of mind … especially when compared to Arizona nursing homes.

 

Less Contact with Outside Healthcare Providers

Overall, assisted living and memory care facilities in Gilbert, Arizona have had considerably fewer cases of Coronavirus than alternative options such as nursing homes. When it comes to Gilbert nursing homes and other long-term care nursing facilities, residents typically live with more complex health conditions. This type of care requires more outside healthcare providers, which increases the traffic and the chance for Covid-19 cases. 

With Arizona assisted living, however, our residents require a level of care that our trained staff are able to handle themselves. With a more limited staff, we’re able to screen visitors easier and trace potential cases.

 

Increased Space for Activities and Social Distancing

Assisted Living in Gilbert, Arizona often has fewer residents and more space than long-term care nursing facilities. And, due to the increased distance between contact, residents are less likely to transmit the virus. In addition, residents also have more room to safely move around and participate in activities. As we navigate this situation, we are refining our policies and procedures to mitigate against COVID-19 in our active senior living communities.

 

Personalized Care

Not only do these Arizona assisted living communities generally have fewer residents, but they also have more manageable health issues. This enables our staff to have the time to provide more personalized care to each resident. 

Increased check-ups, safely transferring residents to activities, and creating an overall stronger bond with each other.

 

Staying The Course

The safety and comfort of your loved one remains our primary focus. With no end in sight, we are closely monitoring the situation and continuing to use our enhanced safety measures currently in place, including:

  • Staff trained to identify COVID-19 symptoms and testing is completed on-site, if any symptoms arise.
  • Resident temperature checks 2x daily with additional screening.
  • COVID testing completed before move-in.
  • Employees screened before entering the Arizona senior living community.
  • Trained care staff on-site 24/7 to monitor health and wellness and provide direct care.
  • Advanced geofencing technology to prohibit entry by people who have been to places with active COVID-19.

 

Additionally, dining restrictions have been put in place: residents are able to either eat in the dining hall with 6 feet spacing, or continue to eat in their apartments. Social Distancing continues to limit engagements to small groups, and in settings where 6 feet of distance between individuals can be maintained.

These, and more, are all steps we will continue to take in our Gilbert, Arizona senior living community to ensure the safety of all of our residents.


The Best Active Engagement and Activities Programming at Gilbert, Arizona for Senior Living

Assisted living in Gilbert, Arizona can provide your loved one with the ability to experience healthy aging through active engagement and social interaction. 

Staying active is not only important for all of us but especially for our Arizona seniors. According to the CDC, physical activity for seniors can reduce the risk of diseases and falls, as well as increase overall mental and physical health. This is just one of the many reasons why our activity programming plays a primary role in our Active Adult Living senior communities, here in Gilbert, Arizona.

 

Activities:

Our Gilbert, Arizona Senior Living Surpass community prides itself on the robust activity programming offered to our residents. And our customized care is designed to meet the unique needs of each resident and to keep your loved ones active and thriving! We offer a variety of programs such as Bingo, Painting, Brain Games, Putt-Putt, Balloon Volleyball, and Bowling. 

Depending on CDC guidelines, we also make it a focus to spend time outside the community with field trips, cookouts, car parades, and patio visits.

 

Traditions:

In addition to Assisted Living, our Arizona senior programs in Traditions are also very important and we focus on a variety of activities. Our Traditions team is trained to turn even a simple conversation into a potentially reminiscent activity to assist our residents in still feeling the way they did before the Disease. Traditions activities may include: baking, word games, and listening to music. 

These activities are designed to stimulate our Arizona senior resident’s cognitive abilities and help keep their brain engaged. For example, when baking, staff will talk about different things pertaining to cooking and occasionally a smell may trigger a memory. A song, type of food, or even a certain smell can help make our residents feel a certain way, and will help them get back into that mindset where they’re able to tell stories.

 

Socialization:

Socialization is another key element in mental health among our Arizona seniors, and goes hand in hand with our activity programs. Isolation and depression is a very real aspect of seniors lives, which is why we incorporate activities that can support socialization. Even dinner can be an important time of day for your loved ones to get out and talk with their friends.

 

Staff:

Finally, the Program Directors at our Gilbert, Arizona community go above and beyond to care for each resident, and make sure they are indeed thriving. We focus on physical and social needs, but also cognitive, sensory, and spiritual needs as well. It is their full-time job to make sure your loved one is doing great and having the time of their life, and they do their job extremely well.

If you are looking for compassionate senior living or memory care for a loved one, within the CDC guidelines, here in Gilbert, Arizona, consider giving us a call at Mariposa Point from Surpass Senior Living. You can contact one of our sales directors here.