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10 Best Brain Games for Parkinson’s Patients

Medically reviewed by Sandeep Dhanyamraju
Medically reviewed by Sandeep Dhanyamraju

The human brain is such a unique phenomenon. Even after many years of studying humans, scientists still make discoveries. But, despite all the positive aspects of the human brain, it can create negative barriers. One of these may be Parkinson’s disease.

This disease is characterized by:

  • Symptoms of impaired motor function (slowness of movement, tremors, and loss of balance).
  • Non-motor disorders (decrease in cognitive functions, mental disorders, sleep disturbances).

 

Movement disorders contribute to speech and motor difficulties. They also limit the patient’s ability in many spheres of life.

 

We have prepared for you a list of 10 games that can improve a patient’s life with Parkinson’s. And we will also tell you why these games are indispensable in the patient’s life.

 

1. Checkers and Chess

Checkers and Chess game

Providing checkers and chess for Parkinson’s patients is an essential form of therapy. It’s best for those who suffer from this chronic movement disorder. These classic board games can offer significant neurological benefits. It’s because of stimulating strategic problem-solving play.

 

By nurturing the brain with these activities, patients can enhance neural connections. And they remain engaged in meaningful pursuits throughout their lives.

 

In this way, checkers and chess provide a form of cognitive therapy. It can help improve motor skills and battle some of the disease’s negative effects.

 

2. Poker

Poker for brain

Poker for Parkinson’s patients could be one of the best games for the aging brain. This activity has been shown to help improve reaction time and fine motor skills. Thus, it works in an enjoyable, mentally stimulating way. Group poker games also offer an opportunity for socialization among other Parkinson’s patients. 

 

And it all provides a safe setting. Poker for Parkinson’s patients helps to increase cognition and focus. And it also reduces symptoms such as movement difficulties and muscle rigidity. Participants come away from each gaming session feeling more fulfilled and connected. And it leaves them with a sense of hope.

 

3. BlackJack

BlackJack for training brain

BlackJack for Parkinson’s patients is a form of therapy. It encourages physical activity and promotes cognitive awareness. By shaking the hand-held gaming control, users can relearn necessary motor skills for the game. 

 

Practicing these movements supports greater mobility and improved coordination over time. This therapy also stimulates mental activity with challenging strategies to win. By providing enjoyment and relief from symptoms, BlackJack for Parkinson’s patients is transforming the lives of individuals and their families.

 

4. Scrabble

Scrabble for brain

For those suffering from Parkinson’s, playing board games can be a fun activity for patients. It’s an engaging reprieve from the effects of their condition. Not only does it bring a sense of comfort and familiarity to many who grew up with the game. But it also provides patients with some intellectually stimulating challenges. 

 

They can encourage cognitive stimulation. Playing games like Scrabble can help improve communication and language development. At the same time, it also provides an avenue for socialization among friends and family. Equally important is how Scrabble forces patients to consider their strategic decisions carefully. And ultimately build on existing decision-making skills.

 

5. Puzzles

Puzzles for brain

Puzzles can be an effective therapy for Parkinson’s patients. They serve as a distraction. And they allow individuals to focus on the task at hand instead of symptoms like:

  • Tremors.
  • Difficulty moving.

 

And it helps with cognitive processes that are often impaired in Parkinson’s.

Not only puzzles are enjoyable and potentially stress-relieving for people with the condition. They also aid in both short and long-term memory retention. Puzzles may even ease social interaction among caregivers and loved ones of those affected by Parkinson’s disease. This makes puzzles an excellent choice for patients to build their skills.

 

6. Memory-Matching Card Games

Memory-Matching Card Games

Memory-matching card games can be an effective therapeutic intervention for Parkinson’s patients. These games help to increase mental stimulation and seniors’ memory. Also, they provide an entertaining and interactive way to maintain cognitive functioning. Challenging patients to remember and match items from the cards encourages better engagement with the brain and helps with recall.

 

It is believed that regular activity can work to improve Parkinson’s disease symptoms. And playing memory-matching card games is one example. People suffering from the condition can cultivate a healthier lifestyle while having fun.

 

7. Charades 

Charades for brain

Charades can be an effective tool to help patients with Parkinson’s disease. Acting out words and phrases can help stimulate the brains of these individuals. And it improves cognition and communication skills. This type of rehabilitation also has the added benefit of aiding in social interaction, which many living with Parkinson’s may lack. 

 

Also, it can provide a much-needed social outlet. And it is fun and engaging for everyone involved. Physician supervisors should explore their options regarding incorporating charades into therapy sessions for their Parkinson’s patients to see if this creative form of rehabilitation benefits them.

 

8. SolitaireSolitaire for brain

Playing solitaire card games for Parkinson’s patients is a great source of: 

  • Comfort.
  • Distraction. 

 

Especially for Parkinson’s patients. It is an activity they can enjoy while social distancing. And it also offers many cognitive benefits. Additionally, solitaire can be beneficial to physical coordination. It’s because the patient:

  • Manipulates the cards with their hands.
  • Strengthens their fine motor skills, such as coordination and precision.

 

Besides providing many physical and mental health benefits, playing solitaire may offer:

  • A sense of accomplishment.
  • Self-satisfaction afterward.

 

Patients can assess tasks in front of them and think strategically about how to solve each game. It helps reduce stress amidst a challenging situation.

 

9. Simon Says

Simon Says for brain training

Simon Says is one of the best games for the aging brains for people with Parkinson’s disease.

It combines:

  • Vocal commands delivered by the trainer.
  • Physical movement.
  • Mental agility to challenge the brain’s neural pathways and help them stay connected.

 

With “Simon Says” mechanics, people with Parkinson’s like to follow verbal instructions. And at the same time, their motor skills do various physical activities. Memory and coordination can be greatly improved with regular Simon Say exercises. It makes it an essential tool in helping manage the condition.

 

10. Word Puzzles

Word Puzzles for brain

Word puzzles help people with Parkinson’s Disease maintain their cognitive abilities. Research has shown that providing a stimulating environment for individuals living with Parkinson’s can help slow the progression of their symptoms.

 

With word puzzles, Parkinson’s patients can keep mentally sharp. And they remain mentally active, which helps preserve cognitive functioning. Word puzzles provide an entertaining activity. And it allows patients to relax while also stimulating their mental capacities. By offering these activities, we can create a meaningful impact on patients’ lives.

 

What Problems Can the Elderly Face When Playing Brain Games?

Brain games are a popular form of entertainment. And they can also improve cognitive function. These games provide a great way for people to learn and stay entertained. But there are potential problems that patients can experience when playing brain games for Parkinson’s.

 

Playing brain games can be challenging for people with a cognitive impairment. It’s because of the constantly changing nature of brain games. This is especially true for those with an expected decline in cognition due to the condition. Additionally, some of these games need a certain level of motor control. 

 

This can make them challenging due to problems with physical movement. Also, participating in such activities is quite tiring. Especially for individuals suffering from this neurological disorder. Their bodies have to work harder to process even simple requests.

 

If someone with Parkinson’s wants to play brain games, they should take precautions. And adjusting the type and difficulty of the game is essential.

 

Useful Info About Games for Relatives

In case you have a relative with Parkinson’s disease, you will need help finding sources for:

  • Games to help seniors with memory.
  • Therapies and more.

 

Elderly brain games for maintaining mental development can be on the Internet. Also, such games are easy to find in special care centers for patients. If you want to diversify the routine of your relatives with the disease, you can develop a game yourself. To do this, just follow the patterns of existing games.

 

As for pastimes, it is best to send your relative to a special center if you do not have much time for care. In such an environment, people with Parkinson’s disease will feel more comfortable. Pastimes and games will also be more interesting for such people if they are in a similar community.

 

Bottom Line

Fun activities for Parkinson’s patients can help people manage their symptoms. But no single game can cure the condition. Playing brain games on a regular basis can lead to improved cognitive functioning. And it can also lead to a better quality of life. The 10 best brain games outlined in this article are just some of the options available.

 

But always choose an activity that works well with your lifestyle and symptoms. Doing so will ensure that you are making the most out of each moment. And it also helps minimize side effects associated with Parkinson’s Disease.

 

FAQs 

Do brain games help Parkinson’s?

Yes, brain games can certainly help those with Parkinson’s. Research has shown that certain types of cognitive activities and exercises may improve:

  • Memory.
  • Focus.
  • Problem-solving.
  • Cognitive ability in individuals with Parkinson’s.

 

Are video games good for Parkinson’s?

Video games may be beneficial for some people with Parkinson’s. Action video games play may increase dopamine levels in the brain. It could help to reduce symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. But it is important to note that too much gaming can lead to increased stress levels. It is best to limit gameplay time accordingly.

 

How to attract a person with Parkinson’s disease to play games?

Consider offering activities that are tailored to their interests. If they enjoy playing board games, consider setting up a chess game. Or it could be another game night with friends and family. If they are more tech savvy, you can suggest online gaming. They can be brain training apps or virtual reality headsets.

 

How do you cheer up someone with Parkinson’s?

Be supportive and understanding of the daily challenges they may face. Listen to music, play board games, or engage in conversation with them.

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Edward Medina
Edward Medina
15:34 30 Jun 22
Just such an amazing staff that makes you feel like part of their family. I’ve been going there for over 5 years now... and each visit I get the very best care and treatments that I have ever received in the 20+ years that I’ve been dealing with severe debilitating migraines. Since i started seeing them the number of my migraines has dropped from 15-20 a month to 2-3 every 3 month. I highly recommend them …they will change your life!read more
Daneisha Johnson
Daneisha Johnson
22:20 19 May 22
Dr. Askari was very kind and explained everything so I could understand. The other staff were nice as well. I would... have gave 5 stars but I was a little taken aback when I checked in and had to pay 600.00 upfront. I think that should have been discussed in a appointment confirmation call or email just so I could have been prepared.read more
Jean Cooper
Jean Cooper
16:54 29 Apr 22
I love the office staff they are friendly and very helpful. Dr. JODIE is very caring and understanding to your needs... and wants to help you. I will go back. would recommend Dr. Dr. Jodie to other Patients in a heart beat. The team works well together.read more
Linda M
Linda M
19:40 02 Apr 22
I was obviously stressed, needing to see a neurologist. The staff was so patient and Dr. Ansari was so kind. At one... point he told me to relax, we have time, when I was relaying my history of my condition. That helped ease my stress. I have seen 3 other neurologists and he was the only one who performed any assessment tests on my cognitive and physical skills. At one point I couldn't complete two assessments and got upset and cried. I was told, it's OK. That's why you're here. I was truly impressed, and super pleased with the whole experience!read more
Leslie Durham
Leslie Durham
15:05 01 Apr 22
I've been coming here for about 5 years. The staff are ALWAYS friendly and knowledgeable. The Doctors are the absolute... best!! Jodie Moore is always in such a great mood which is a plus when you are already stressed. Highly recommendedread more
Monica Del Bosque
Monica Del Bosque
14:13 25 Mar 22
Since my first post my thoughts have changed here. It's unfortunate. My doctor and PA were great, but the office staff... is horrible. They never call you back when they say they will, they misinform you, they cause you too much stress wondering what's going on, they don't keep you posted. They never answer the phone. At this point I've left four messages in the last week, and I have sent three messages. Twice from their portal and one direct email. No response. My appointment is on Monday morning at 8:30am, no confirmation on my insurance and what's going on. What the heck is going on, this is ridiculous!I've given up... the stress her office staff has put me through is just not worth it. You can do so much better, please clean house, either change out your office staff, or find a way for them to be more efficient please. You have to do something. This is not how you want to run your practice. It leaves a very bad impression on your business.read more
Ron Buckholz
Ron Buckholz
23:32 23 Mar 22
I was actually pleasantly surprised with this visit! It took me a long time to get the appointment scheduled because no... one answers your phones EVER! After a month, I finally got in, and your staff was warm, friendly, and I was totally impressed! I feel like you will take care of my needs!read more
Steve Nabavi
Steve Nabavi
16:28 16 Mar 22
It was a nice visit. Happy staff doing all they can do to comfort the patients in a very calming environment. You ask... me they are earned a big gold star on the fridge. My only complaint they didn't give me any cookies.read more
Katie Lewis
Katie Lewis
16:10 10 Feb 22
Had very positive appointments with Jodie and Dr. Sheth for my migraine care. Jodie was so fast with the injections and... has so much valuable info. I started to feel light headed during checkout and the staff was SO helpful—giving me a chair, water, and taking me into a private room until I felt better. Highly recommend this practice for migraine patients, they know what they’re doing!!read more
Joshua Martinez
Joshua Martinez
16:02 10 Dec 21
I was scheduled to be checked and just want to say that the staff was fantastic. They were kind and helpful. I was... asked many questions related to what was going on and not once did I feel as though I was being brushed off. The front desk staff was especially great in assisting me. I'm scheduled to go back for a mri and am glad that I'll be going there.read more
Isabel Ivy
Isabel Ivy
21:42 03 Nov 21
I had such a good experience with Lone Star Neurology, Brent my MRI Tech was so awesome and made sure I was very... comfortable during the appointment. He gave me ear plugs, a pillow, leg support and blanket, easiest MRI ever lol 🤣 My 72 hour EEG nurse Amanda was also so awesome. She made sure I was take care of over the 3 days and took her time with the electrodes to make sure it was comfortable for me! Paige was also a huge help in answering all my questions when it came to my test results, and letting me know her honest opinions about how I should go forth with my treatment.read more
Leslie Luce
Leslie Luce
17:37 20 Oct 21
The professionalism and want to help attitude of this office was present from the moment I contacted them. The follow... up and follow through as well as their willingness to find a way to schedule my dad was above and beyond. We visited two offices in the same day with the same experience. I am appreciative of this—we spend a lot of time with doctors and this was top notch start to finish.read more
robert Parker
robert Parker
16:38 16 Apr 21
I love going to this office. The staff is friendly and helpful. The doctor is great. I am getting the best... neurological tests and treatment I have ever had. The only reason I did not give them a 5 star rating is because it is impossible to reach a live person at the office to reschedule appointments. Every time I have tried to get through to the office it says all people are busy and I am sent to a voicemail. If they could get their phone answering fixed, I would give them a strong 5 stars.read more
MaryAnn Hornbaker
MaryAnn Hornbaker
00:26 25 Feb 21
Dr. Harney is an excellent Dr. I found him friendly , personable and thorough. I evidently am an unusual case. ... Therefore he spent a Hugh amount of time educating me. He even gave me literature to further explain my condition and how to follow up. This is something you rarely get from your doctors. So I am more than please with my doctor and his staff.read more
Roger Arguello
Roger Arguello
03:05 29 Jan 21
Always courteous, professional. The staff is very friendly and always work with you to find the best appointment time.... The care team has been great. Always taking the time to listen to your concerns and to find the best treatment.read more
Margaret Rowland
Margaret Rowland
01:12 27 Jan 21
I have been a patient at Lone Star Neurology for several years. Now both my adult daughters also are patients there. I... love Jodie. She is always so prompt whether it is a teleamed call are a visit in the office. She takes the time to explain everything to me and answers all my questions. I am so blessed to have Jodie as my doctor.read more
Susan Miller
Susan Miller
03:01 13 Jan 21
My husband had an accident 5 years ago and Lone Star Neurology has been such a blessing to us with my husbands care.... Jodie Moore is his provider and she is amazing! Jodie is very knowledgeable, caring, and thorough. She takes her time with you, making sure your needs are met and she is happy to answer any questions you may have. Lone Star Neurology’s patients are very lucky to have Jodie providing their care. Thank you Lone Star Neurology and especially Jodie for everything you have done for us. Jodie, you are the best!read more
Windalyn C
Windalyn C
01:32 09 Jan 21
Jodie is wonderful. She is very caring and knowledgeable. I have been to over a dozen neurologists, and none were able... to help me as much as they have here. Thanks!read more
Katie Kordel
Katie Kordel
00:40 09 Jan 21
Jodi Moore, nurse practitioner, is amazing. I have suffered from frequent, debilitating headaches for almost 20 years.... She has provided the best proactive and responsive care I have ever received. My quality of life has been greatly improved by her caring approach and tenacity in finding solutions.read more
Ellie Natsis
Ellie Natsis
15:41 07 Jan 21
I have had the best experience at this neurologist's office! For over a year I have been receiving iv treatments here... each month and my nurse, Bobbie is beyond wonderful!! She's so attentive, knowledgeable, caring, and detail oriented. She makes an otherwise uncomfortable experience much more pleasant and definitely puts me at ease! She also helps me with my insurance,ordering this specialty medication and dealing with the ordering process which is no easy feat.Needless to say, she goes above a beyond in every way and I'm so grateful to this office and to Bobbie for all they do for me!read more
Matt Morris
Matt Morris
15:39 07 Jan 21
Let me start by saying that I have been coming here for years. Due to my autoimmune disease, I am in this office... once every three weeks for multiple hours at a time. The office is very clean and the staff very friendly. My only complaint would be there communication via phone. They aren't the best at responding if you leave a voicemail and expect a call back. I understand that this is prob just due to the sheer number of alls they receive daily. What I can say I like the best about the office are the people. Bobby who handles my infusions is great. I never have any issues with her setting up my infusions. She is very quick to reply to messages sent via text and if she were to leave then my whole opinion of the office may change. I also enjoy people like Matt, Lauren, and Jodi. I appreciate all that they do for me and without this team I'm not sure I would be as happy as I am to visit the office as frequently as I have to. Please ensure that these folks are recognized as they are what makes my visit to this office so tolerable :).read more
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