As people age, the brain gradually goes through a change. There can be a subtle decline in the ability to recall information, in focusing, and in the speed of processing information. However, not all areas of brain function experience a decline.
The areas in the brain that deal with reasoning, vocabulary, and comprehension can stay stable and even improve. With that said, there is a lot that a senior can do to keep his mind sharp. One approach is by playing games.
Game playing engages the individual at many levels. It requires the person to read and follow instructions, analyze, and figure out a strategy to win. Games can take many forms, but the most convenient way is by playing games via a mobile device.
Almost everyone uses a smartphone now, and there are plenty of fun games available through phone apps that a senior can engage in.
Simple Game Apps for Seniors
Game apps for seniors don’t need to be complicated. An elderly person might feel intimidated by technology. They might feel that playing a game on the phone is beyond their ability. However, there are many simple game apps that even a young child can play, so the gameplay on the phone is very easy.
The senior may need help with the initial downloading, which a family member or a caregiver can help with. Explaining and demonstrating how the game works take only a few minutes. The senior will be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to start playing.
Some games are free, while others might require a minimal charge for the download. Games often offer in-app purchases that are optional. These are additional tools or rewards that can enhance the game experience. There might also be an option to remove the ads by paying a fee.
Because there are literally thousands of game apps available, it is a good idea to gauge the interest of the senior in the selection of games. What type of games does he like?
Puzzles, word games, games of skill, and card games, represent just a fraction of what is available. Find out the interest areas of the individual, then look through the phone apps.
Simple iPhone Games for Seniors
Sometimes games designed for an Android phone might not be available on an iPhone. For the purpose of this article, below are suggestions for iPhone games for seniors that have great reviews.
Words With Friends
This game is similar to the popular Scrabble board game. Words With Friends is great for someone to play with friends who have downloaded the same game because you can search through the database and choose your friend from the list to start playing with them.
You try to form words with the seven letters that you get, and you compete with the other player to score the most points by the strategic placement of your words. This is a nice way to connect with another player, challenge your brain, and strengthen your vocabulary.
Card Shark Solitaire
This is an easy way for a senior to play his favorite solitaire card game on the phone. The nice thing about this app (available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store) is that the action is smooth, and it is easy to use a finger to drag and drop the card from one place to the other.
The game layout automatically adjusts with each card played. You can choose the image of the card backs and the style of the fronts. You can even customize your card table. There are endless variations to the shuffle, so there is little possibility of playing any game twice.
Dots: A Game About Connecting
Dots is simple yet challenging. The goal is to connect dots of the same color horizontally and vertically to score as many points as possible. You get more points if you make a square. The game display is pleasing to the eye.
You can challenge yourself more by playing in the timed mode or removing the time restriction so you can connect dots at your leisure. Other challenges include removing selected dots from the game board.
The game is easy to play and addictive. It makes your brain think strategically as you try to figure out the best way to score the most points.
Classic games never go out of style! This new version of Tetris (available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store) has added features and colors. Clear a row to advance to the next.
You can play this on your own with unlimited rounds to improve your skill, or you can play against a hundred other players to see who remains at the end. You can even join a team and play together and earn rewards.
The theme can be customized to make the game environment uniquely yours.
Seniors will love this digital version of the old classic pinball machine. The game functions just like the machine. You hit the pinball and see it bounce off different stations, go through canyons and channels, and rack up points for you.
The layout immerses you into the gameplay. It is great for practicing your motor skills and reflexes as you navigate through the course to try to score as many points as you can. PinOut is sure to bring back a lot of nostalgia for an old favorite pastime.
This popular numbers game is great for training the mind to use logic and deductive reasoning.
You can start with the simplest 3×3 game board and advance to a bigger grid for a challenge. This classic game helps you use your brain to spot patterns, recognize opportunities, and fill in the missing numbers.
The nice thing about playing this classic puzzle game online (available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store) is that it is easy to change a number without a lot of erasing!
This fun puzzle game challenges you to see patterns and predict how pieces fit in. You are given a game board and shapes that you drag onto the grid. When you fill a row, column, or make a square, you clear the row, and you advance to the next.
You try to clear as many rows as you can to make a high score. Try to beat your personal best each time you play. Woodoku is relaxing because there is no time limit, but it does make your brain think spatially about the best way to fit in pieces.
Summary and Final Recommendations
The above are just a few examples of fun and simple game apps for seniors that provide entertainment as well as a way to exercise their brains. Game playing allows the senior to have fun and be in a good mood.
It keeps the brain cells active so cognitive abilities can be strengthened. If several seniors play the same game, they can even have a little friendly competition. This encourages the social aspect of online game playing, which is also important to the daily life of the senior.
New game apps are added every day, so it is worth the time to search for new games every now and then to keep the game collection fresh on the senior’s phone.
There are game apps designed for all types of interests. Finding the right ones for an elderly individual will help in keeping the senior engaged and mentally active.
Natural aging does not have to lead to a significant decline in cognitive ability. Game playing is a good approach to keeping the brain healthy and strong.
As each game is won, there is a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment that is also healthy for the mind. All of this will enhance the senior’s quality of life.