Take Care of Your Brain

Tips to keep your brain healthier as you age

A person on their sofa with a book at home.Keeping your brain healthy is key to your physical and mental health. Your brain controls body processes like digestion and muscle movement. It’s also the center for your emotions, memory, and decision-making. As you age, it might seem natural to focus on your physical health. But don’t forget to support your brain with these healthy habits.

Exercise keeps your brain strong

Did you know that people who get regular exercise show better memory skills than those who don’t? Add some activity into your routine to support your body and brain at the same time. You might try going for a walk, tai chi, or starting a MOVE! plan with VA.

Being active not only improves your physical health but can strengthen your memory and cognitive function too.

Mental health and brain health

Mental health impacts your thinking. Stress and anxiety might make it hard to focus on your daily life. If you experience depression, your thoughts could feel slower or more confused. Symptoms of PTSD can interrupt your daily life.

If you experience anxiety, depression, or PTSD, VA can help. Talk with your health care provider to find out what treatment is best for you. Your brain health and mental health go together. Support for one is help for the other.

Sleep recharges your brain

If you don’t get enough sleep, you’re not alone. You probably know what it’s like to get a bad night of sleep and struggle with low energy the next day. But sleep recharges your brain too, not just your body. If you don’t sleep well, it can affect your thinking and moods.

Learn about good habits to improve your sleep. Give your brain the time it needs to rest and recharge so you can have a better next day. You should talk with your doctor about common sleep issues, like insomnia, to make sure you have the support you need.

Talk with your doctor about brain health

Small, occasional changes in your brain as you age can be normal. If you’d like to learn more, VA has brain health resources for you. Talk with your health care team if you’re noticing frequent problems with your thinking, memory, or mood. Send a Secure Message to your doctor with your questions and symptoms.

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Read more

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Brain Health and Quality of Life in Aging (VA Geriatrics and Extended Care)

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Created September 13, 2022