Decline in mental power is one of the changes that are commonly observed as people get older. You will only be stating the obvious when you describe these changes as somewhat distressing. This is especially so when you think about the importance of superb brain power in today's world in order to stay ahead of rivals. The search to find a solution to decline in your mental performance is no doubt what has brought you here. And we do hope to make your visit worthwhile with the information presented here.
It has been said that all humans will experience changes in their mental function as they get older. The only difference between all persons will be in the degree of changes that are observed by each one. The brain and other parts of the body do not deteriorate at the same rate across all persons as years pass by. This is why the decline in mental function that a particular 50-year-old will experience may not be as severe as that of another person of similar age.
There is nothing much to worry about when the rate of brain-aging is normal – so slow that it is hardly perceptible. Significant change in mental functions is of a higher concern and would need to be dealt with appropriately as soon as possible to prevent further decline and nightmarish outcomes. Failure to deal with these changes effectively could lead to interference in your ability to perform daily tasks efficiently.
There are several factors that can speed up decline in mental capacity as you get older. Existing physical and psychological health issues can cause this. For instance, disorders such as diabetes, cardiovascular issues, anxiety and depression increase the extent of mental health challenges you may experience as you get older. Change in levels of certain hormones in the body, including growth hormone, testosterone and estrogen, is also believed to contribute to aging brain. Risk factors also include:
There are several symptoms that can be observed as indicative of a drop in mental function. These include forgetfulness, difficulty in maintaining focus and concentration, and decline in problem-solving capacity. Some mental functions are not usually affected substantially by aging. These include certain numerical skills, general knowledge and vocabulary skills. The capabilities that suffer most with age include recall ability, speed of information processing, and reasoning. Ability to multitask also decline. In short, skills you need the most to function productively are typically affected the most. The slowdown in the ability of your brain to process information is, perhaps, the most worrisome.
Dementia and Alzheimer's disease are two of the more severe problems that could result if age-related decline in cognitive functions is not arrested or managed early enough.
Experts have recommended sufficient engagement of the brain in order to slow the decline in function that sets in with age. They say the two hemispheres of both the cerebrum and the cerebellum need to be used effectively well. You should engage your brain to keep it in good shape. The phrase "use it or lose it" is often used to explain the phenomenon whereby brain power is significantly lost in older people due to the organ not being used as well as it once was or ought to be used. The following are some ideas you can use to improve mental function and prevent or slow decline in your brain power.
When it comes to anything that has to do with health, the role of exercises cannot be overemphasized. Many people would love to do without exercise because of the "hard work" involved, but you cannot really escape it if you desire good physical and mental health. Dana-Farber and Harvard Medical School researchers showed in a groundbreaking 2013 study that a molecule that guards against brain degeneration and promotes cognition is released whenever you engaged in endurance exercise. This molecule, which was called irisin, was said to activate genes that have to do with memory and learning.
Studies have also shown that exercises, such as cardiovascular exercise, can raise your heart rate and enhance the supply of blood to your brain and other parts of your body. Exercise boosts brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels to improve cognition.
If you are the type that used to eat anything you can lay your hands on, you need to readjust your preferences. A balanced diet lacking in refined sugars and having low amount of fats is advised. However, you will benefit immensely from foods with unsaturated omega-3 fats. Mediterranean diet is believed to be highly beneficial to brain health. Efforts should be made to eat lots of fruits and vegetables.
The problem that comes with not getting enough nightly sleep doesn’t stop at you feeling sleepy and less active the following day. Insufficient sleep can negatively affect you in several other ways. You could suffer from sleep-related problems such as insomnia and sleep apnea. These, in turn, affect your brain power. And this is no recent discovery. Scientists have long known that sleep helps with learning and memory consolidation. Older people typically have challenge when it comes to having good sleep and this partly contributes to decline in mental function.
A relationship between poor quality of sleep and decreased gray matter volume in the frontal lobe of the brain was observed in a 2014 study done at the University of California, San Francisco. The gray matter plays very important roles in ensuring the brain function effectively. These include managing executive function and working memory.
Loneliness is one of the risk factors that are known to contribute to the decline that is seen in mental function as people get older. In modern society, it is not uncommon to see many senior citizens left on their own with no one to spend time with. This is not helpful to cognitive capacity. The chain of reactions that is set off by loneliness is scary. These include sleep disruption, elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol, high blood pressure, and depression. All these combine to harm your brain power. You will therefore benefit from establishing and maintaining exciting social connections.
Re-ignite old relationships, join a club or choir, volunteer, or do any other things that can help you meet people with whom you can spend time when feeling lonely.
Among the ways by which you can prevent mental decline is by maintaining a habit of reading regularly. It has been observed that long years of formal education cut the risk of cognitive deterioration and dementia. As a result, you will benefit from any opportunity that requires you to read books, such as when taking a class at a community center or college.
There is so much to benefit even when you read just a novel. An Emory University study published in Brain Connectivity revealed that reading fiction improves brain connectivity thereby enhancing mental function. This is because of how engrossed a reader can become when reading a novel, causing them to work their brain by picturing scenes and characters. Writing is another great way of engaging your brain.
Chronic stress can be damaging to the brain. This is as a result of the effect it has on cortisol levels in the body. Several studies have confirmed the damaging effect of chronic stress. Neuroscientists say it causes long-term changes in the structure of the brain, with this contributing to decline in mental function. Cortisol warps the brain and makes it to be in a somewhat perpetual state of fight-or-flight. Individuals who have been exposed to chronic stress from an early age are more prone to suffering decline in mental capacity.
Fight against mental decline is another reason you should consider putting a halt to smoking. The problems this habit creates for your body can be quite frightening, or wouldn’t you consider a drop in your brain power to be that? Smoking liberates free radicals to cause problems in many parts of your body. Unfortunately, the brain is one of the parts that may be affected. Certain factors, including lifestyle choices, make it difficult for your body to fight these harmful free radicals as you get older. You will therefore benefit from kicking the habit to improve your cognitive function, if for no other reasons.
There is an increase in the number of digital games that are believed to be helpful in working the brain. You can play some on your PC, tablet or smartphone. However, it has to be noted that not every digital game can efficiently engage your brain. The type of games you can benefit more from are those that challenges you mentally. You are unlikely to benefit much from routine games that you do not find to be mentally tasking. Games that stimulate or challenge your brain not only improves mental function, but also prevents or delays the onset of Alzheimer’s in certain individuals.
In a University of California, San Francisco study published in the journal Nature in 2013, researchers observed that a specially-created video game helped to improve mental skills, including ability to multitask, in older individuals.
Supplements containing certain natural ingredients can also help you to boost your brain power. The ingredients include Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphoryl Choline (A-GPC), Phosphatidylserine, Gingko biloba, Acetyl-L-carnitine and fish oils. These help in different ways to improve mental health. A-GPC results in significant improvement in neurological processes and relieves symptoms of chronic cerebral decline. In its own case, Phosphatidylserine facilitates the delivery of nutrients to cells in the brain, thereby improving cognitive function.
BrainPill is a product by Leading Edge Health whose name aptly describes what it does. It is a special product for promoting brain health. BrainPill is an all-natural supplement that is made with potent ingredients, including some of the ones mentioned above, proven to be helpful to the brain. It is not merely another of the many brain-enhancing products on the market. Brain Pill boasts clinically-proven, and even patented, ingredients such as Cognizin and Synapsa. The quality of these ingredients is such that they cost a significant amount of money, which was enough reason for them to be ignored in the manufacturing of many other brain boosters on the market. The company producing the supplement says it is meant for those who desire the only best when it comes to optimizing their mental health.
The foregoing are only some of the ways you can improve or preserve your mental capacity as you get older, although they could be considered sufficient. There are several others things that can also help. These include guarding against head injuries, engaging in regular meditation, and cutting down on alcohol consumption. You will also need to talk to your doctor about the medications you taken when looking to guard against age-related cognitive decline. Drug interactions may start to produce different effects from the ones you experienced previously as you get older.
The effects of age-related decline in mental function can be quite distressing. The deterioration in cognitive capacity can lead to depression and even dementia, if not checked in a timely fashion. You can prevent unpleasant turn of events and preserve your ability to measure up in today's highly-demanding world by taking decisive action to deal with identified concerns early enough. We believe the ideas provided here should go a long way in helping you improve your mental capacity.
Exercises (both physical and mental), a balanced diet, an active, social lifestyle, and healthy habits will be crucial. You will also benefit from using a brain boosting product such as BrainPill, which is made with very safe and potent natural ingredients. The usefulness of the supplement can be amplified when it is combined especially with exercise, healthy diet and good sleep.
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