Today is National Puzzle Day—a day that recognizes how puzzles can engage and exercise our brains. 🧩🧠🌱🌷

Puzzles can be used as a mood elevator, because they increase the production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood, memory, and concentration. Dopamine is released with every success as we solve the puzzle. When concentrating on how to solve the puzzle, our minds are focused on a specific task and that encourages our brains to also go into a meditative state.🧘

Challenging your brain to learn something new—such as a foreign language, a musical instrument, or even completing a puzzle—has been shown to improve brain structures and neuroplasticity. Working on puzzles reinforce the connections between our brain cells, and encourages the formation of new ones. Whether it’s a crossword, jigsaw, trivia, word searches, brain teasers or Sudoku, puzzles encourage our minds to grow and can improve memory, cognitive function, and problem-solving skills. They can also improve visual and spatial reasoning. Studies have found that puzzles promote whole-brain thinking where we use both sides of the brain. Apps and games have also been studied in well-designed, randomized clinical trials and many have been proven to improve the brain’s processing speed, attention, and memory through neuroplasticity. 👏

Here’s a word puzzle you can do today to engage those neural pathways! 

Comment below with what you find!  

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