Fun Games to Play with Seniors

Seniors who play games can keep their cognitive capacities and delay the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s. The advantages of play are usually apparent in a short time. Games are also a terrific method to interact and share, which is especially important for individuals suffering the consequences of social isolation that’s all too typical among the elderly.

Physical activities aren’t for everybody, and games involving time constraints or intricate techniques might be frustrating for those with impaired cognitive abilities. The activities listed below stimulate the mind in various ways, offer diverse degrees of social interaction, and are suitable for a broad spectrum of seniors.

Call-to-Mind

Call-to-Mind was created for persons who were in the early stages of dementia and is all about communication. It’s simple to play and includes questions designed to help participants recall memories from their past, establishing bonds with the ones they cherish the most. It’s also an excellent method for seniors to get to know one another, and it tends to initiate a conversation that you wouldn’t have otherwise.

Scrabble

scrabble pieces, scrabble letters spelling “LEARN’

Word games for seniors are excellent ways to keep the mind bright and engaged, and Scrabble has been enjoyed and encouraged in assisted living settings for years. The game requires players to put words together, recollect them, and make strategic judgments about where to position their tiles, making for a fascinating experience. 

Small tiles and letters in specific versions of the game may not suit everyone, but regular Scrabble fights can help prevent the onset of cognitive decline for those who love it.

Puzzles

white puzzle, puzzle pieces

For seniors with cognitive loss or dementia, completing a jigsaw puzzle has a variety of benefits. Puzzles demand equal parts logic and creativity to solve; thus, both brain hemispheres are involved. They can help players focus and relax by improving short-term memory and visual recognition. 

Keep in mind that little puzzle pieces may be difficult for seniors with arthritis, and it’s better to use basic images with distinct forms and colors for persons with limited vision. You can even have a snapshot of a special memory turned into a puzzle.

PicLink

PicLink is perfect for people who find the other games on this list too aggravating challenging or. It’s easy to use, is enjoyable, and helps people with dementia improve their cognitive function. It comes with 36 photo tiles that may be organized by color, subject, or other characteristics, and you can change the game’s difficulty by selecting a smaller set of the given tiles. 

Some seniors may find this game to be far too easy, if not insultingly so, but it is one of the few games of its kind created for adults who can’t manage more complex tasks.

Trivial Pursuit

Trivia games can help you improve your memory, and Trivial Pursuit has a great deal to offer elders. It may aggravate those with progressive memory loss, but seniors may play the game in groups to alleviate the stress. Contributing to a team is a terrific feeling for anyone, especially when your loved one has the correct answer.

Checkers and Chess

Chess is a fun game that requires a lot of strategic thinking and concentration, so it’s ideal for seniors who like to keep their minds sharp and prevent cognitive issues before they happen. Checkers is a perfect alternative for persons with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia because it has a more straightforward system of rules and mechanics.

Shake Loose a Memory

The Shake Loose A Memory card game aims to bring back good memories and create dialogues. Each card begins by instructing the player to “keep this card if” they’ve done something in the past, like gardening or fishing. 

The card then poses a question, such as, “Do you recall placing bait on the hook?” There aren’t wrong answers, and the game is won by sharing experiences and recalling things you might not have considered in a long time.

Pictionary

Pictionary isn’t a good fit for seniors with shaky hands or arthritis because it’s a drawing game, but it engages the intellect in new and exciting ways for those who can play it. When players join teams and find a way to solve the drawings, Pictionary is at its best. Above all, it makes no difference how talented an artist an individual is. 

In fact, the worse the artwork is, the more enjoyable the game is for everyone. Pictionary is also one of the best dinner party games to play with your friends and family.

Card Games

A deck of cards is the best way to get the most bang for your dollars. The variety of games available here provides a lot of variation, and you may pick and choose what is suited for your players’ cognitive skills and skill levels. Laying cards down on a table and allowing players to turn over two simultaneously, holding them if they find a matching pair, is a basic memory game. 

Seniors like games such as Cribbage, Rummy, and Pinochle, and Hearts and Solitaire, which can be played alone if preferred.