Crossword puzzle keeps you fit – a healing practice

Crossword puzzle keeps you fit – a healing practice

Crossword puzzles can slow down memory loss

Crossword They are, according to a recent study, more convenient than video games memory loss To slow down with age. The research suggests that by solving the puzzles of a Better brain performance in everyday life benefit.

searching Columbia University and the Duke University He showed that classic crossword puzzles are better suited to slowing cognitive decline in old age than video games. The results of the study were recently published in the journal “NEJM recordsChest.

Crossword vs video games

The working group compared two groups of participants with an average age of 71 years. While one group regularly Video games I played it on it Improve memory performance Designed and solved the other group Classic crossword puzzle.

The first study of this kind

“This is the first study to document the short- and long-term benefits of crossword training at home compared to another intervention.”mentioned Dr. Devanand from Columbia University. His team focused on researching brain aging specialized.

According to him, these results are especially important because until now it has been difficult to prove the success of certain measures to improve brain functioning in old age. Solving crossword puzzles is common, but impact on Mild cognitive impairment According to the researchers, it has not yet been systematically investigated.

Study path

All 107 participants in the study had mild cognitive impairments. They were randomly assigned to one of two groups. was on the set that 12 weeks Solve crossword puzzles regularly while the other group does it memory Practice cognitive video games. The subjects were then followed up for up to 78 weeks.


After 12 and 78 weeks, all participants were identified using a so-called Alzheimer’s Disease Rating Scale been tested. This is a brief neuropsychological assessment used to assess the severity of the cognitive symptoms of mental illness Uses. People who do well on this test tend to be better able to take their test To cope with daily life independently.

As the results show, participants in the crossword puzzle group performed better on average on the test than people tested in the video game group after 12 and 78 weeks.

In addition, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed on all participants after 78 weeks, which showed that associated aging brain shrinkage I progressed more slowly in the crossword group than in the video game group.

Clinically significant effect

“The benefits were evident not only in the cognitive domain, but also in daily activities, and there were signs of brain shrinkage on MRI, indicating that the effects are clinically meaningful.”, summarizes Dr. Devanand.

The results should be verified in more people

Although these results are very encouraging, the scientists involved stress that it is a very small study Actions. The results should first be checked in a larger group. (FP)

Author and source information

This text complies with the requirements of specialized medical literature, medical guidelines, and current studies and has been verified by medical professionals.


Graduate Editor (FH) Volker Plasek


  • Columbia University: Crossword puzzles beat computer video games to slow memory loss (veröffentlicht: 27.10.2022),
  • DB Devanand, Terry E. Goldberg, Min Qian, et al: Computerized games versus crossword training in mild cognitive impairment; In: NEJM Handbook (2022),

important note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot replace a visit to the doctor.


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