Six reasons why word games are great for mental stimulation

Word games have always been popular but have found even greater prominence in a much more extensive range of demographics than before.

This can be attributed to several things, ranging from the rise of the internet to a general desire to play games. However, one fascinating motive could be that word games have long been considered to be food for the brain and perceived to be a fantastic way to train your mind to remain or become even more supple.

While there is plenty of genuine evidence pertaining to this point, the most conclusive tends to be the anecdotal evidence coming from long-time word game enthusiasts who swear that they have seen an improvement in the way they think and recall memories.

This article will explore six of the ways in which word games are said to improve multiple facets of the mind and keep you sharp right up into your twilight years.

1) They enhance vocabulary and literacy skills

The first and arguably most obvious way that word games have been shown to stimulate the mind is by boosting your overall vocabulary and general literacy skills. Not only will you discover a far improved set of words to fall back on when playing the games, but also while you practice. For instance, many experienced players make use of various tools to help them train their minds and give them a little push in the right direction when they’re stumped on a particular word.

Something like a word scrambler allows you to enter a range of letters that you may have and will spit out a massive number of words of varying lengths that include those letters. By using these tools not just for the game itself but also for practice, you will begin to notice a considerable increase in your ability to form interesting words regardless of the letters you have been dealt with.

Not only that, but you may discover brand new words that you had never even considered before, and by attempting to incorporate them into your regular vocabulary, you may become far more fluent in your native tongue than you ever imagined.

2) They boost memory and cognitive function

Cognitive function and memory have a nasty habit of waning over time and can actually affect almost anyone of any age, not just the elderly. While it can appear troubling when you first begin realizing you are forgetting things at a more frequent rate, if it’s not related to disease or some kind of external influence (alcohol, drugs, etc.), you might find that it’s reversible.

Word games are fantastic in this regard, as they force you to think about how you can use a random smattering of letters to create words out of thin air. This takes a great deal of mental agility as you really have to dig deep into your memory banks and draw out the kinds of words that will create the highest score. Obviously, you can just stick to the words you already know, but you stand to gain a lot more by practicing daily and increasing your vocabulary as you go.

3) They sharpen problem-solving and critical-thinking abilities

Stress is an unfortunate part of modern life, but much of it can be dispersed by honing your ability to solve problems as they arise rather than procrastinating and letting them fester. As crazy as it might sound, games like Scrabble, Wordle, et al., are all great ways to sharpen your problem-solving skills that will, in turn, make issues both large and small easier to deal with as they arise.

They can also assist in boosting critical thinking, which can be a real benefit for those in industries that require the ability to think on their feet and come up with creative solutions to various problems or tasks.

4) They offer a fun mental workout

If we’re being honest, there are plenty of other, more efficient ways to stimulate the mind, but they are all for naught if you don’t practice them at regular intervals. The more fun an activity is, the more likely you will last the course, thus boosting the chances of actually discovering a difference in the way you think and feel.

Word games, whatever form they may take, are simply incredibly fun activities and make the process effortless to participate in. You can think of it like exercise.

We all know you must spend 30 minutes per day in some form of movement to maintain a certain level of good health. However, how you exercise will mean the difference between participating and leaving it for another day. It’s much more enjoyable to do an activity you enjoy, like dancing or playing a sport, than merely running on a treadmill for 30 minutes.

5) They improve communication skills

As we have already posited, the more word games you play, the better your vocabulary will become. It is this increase in words and phrases that will ultimately make you a far better communicator and enable you to participate in an almost unlimited number of conversations with a broad range of people.

When you combine the vocabulary effect with other advantages like critical thinking and memory recall, you will end up beginning as one of the more enjoyable conversationalists in your social group by virtue of your ability to soak up and remember vast swathes of interesting and exciting information.

6) They provide relaxation and stress relief

Although we mentioned stress briefly previously, word games have other therapeutic effects that can help minimize their grip on your mind. Because you are using a large portion of your concentration in coming up with new words for whatever game you might be playing, your mind becomes less focused on the little things that cause your mental anguish and more focused on trying to solve problems.

In some ways, you could compare it to other forms of meditation, as you concentrate your mind on one particular task while letting go of any extraneous events that try to enter your mind. In other words, if you are intensely focused on anything else, you will forget about the majority of the things that impact your mind.

Start playing word games today!

Word games can improve various mental abilities, including memory and attention. By regularly partaking in any of the large number of word games available, you can improve your mental agility and keep your mind sharp regardless of age or ability.