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June 25, 2018

Why Crosswords Are Vital to Your Mental Health

2016-10-10 - We generally put the importance of fitness at the front door of physicality. However, according to Harvard Education mental fitness is just as vital to our wellbeing, especially as you grow older. As we age our brains change, our neurons (brain cells) accumulate fat deposits, hindering their function. The neurons die from old age, and are not replaced with new ones so that brain starts to shrink as we age. This means that the messages that are sent between neurons work at a slower speed. Improving your mental dexterity helps to keep both your mind and body healthy. Additionally, mental exercises that aid relaxation are equally as useful as those stoking your brainpower.This doesn’t mean you can forget physical fitness, healthy bodies prevent diabetes and heart disease. However, it does mean that you should find time in your daily routine to complete mental dexterity exercises. This will keep your mind sharper and your body healthier, thus helping you maintain your independence.Don’t worry, though, this doesn’t involve IQ tests or brain competitions. What these exercises do is help you slow down and decompress, and boost a waning memory.We already know that physical exercise can help battle depression, but as it turns out mental exercise is also beneficial.Crossword puzzles test the reasoning part of your brain and are an excellent way to keep your mind sharp. They are an ideal way to build your brain muscles, and aid in increasing your reaction time, attention span, and improve your logic, reasoning skills, and trivia knowledge. Crossword puzzles are the perfect mind improving task because it sharpens your focus. We live in a world where everything has to be completed while multitasking, and as wonderful as that is it breaks our ability to concentrate. Focusing on a single task improves concentration and improves your production rates. When sitting down to do a crossword puzzle it becomes your sole focus.A healthy and sharp mind helps prevent dementia, Alzheimer’s, and can even help to prevent or improve the symptoms of depression and anxiety. For people who have already been diagnosed with the former, crossword puzzles can be used to slow down the progress of symptoms.You might be thinking all of this sounds great, but you’re busy and you just don’t have time. If you don’t have time to solve an entire puzzle, that’s fine- you can work on your puzzle for 10 to 15 minutes every day until it’s done and move on to the next one. Nothing says that the puzzle needs to be completed in one sitting.  You can even involve your family and make it a group exercise to increase bonding, and verbal skills for everyone. 

Source: Crossword365

Can We Solve Crossword Puzzles as a Family?

2016-10-06 - The health benefits of crossword puzzles have been well documented for adults, and the elderly. Additionally, the suggestion that completing crossword puzzles in a group can improve communication skills and cooperation.What is rarely discussed, however, is the benefit crossword puzzles can play in childhood development. Children frequently start out with jigsaw puzzles in large, simple shapes that fit into a board with cut outs. They move on to more complex puzzles in order to improve their hand eye coordination, cognitive skills, and emotional skills as they learn patience. Crossword puzzles improve language skills, have benefits to mental dexterity and concentration. They help the mind recognize patterns and improve critical thinking. So, what benefits are there to collaborative thinking?The first one is obvious- collaboration. This encourages verbalizing thoughts and contributions, as collaborative crossword puzzling requires communication. It also requires the ability to shift your perception. You may come across a clue that you are sure you know the answer to, however someone else believes the answer is something different and both fit your current puzzle. Two (or more) people are bringing different viewpoints in order to reach the same goal- completing the puzzle. As the process requires communication, each puzzler is hearing another perspective. Additionally, when working in a group you are able to piggyback on other people’s thoughts. Sometimes hearing someone talk their thoughts out loud can jog your memory into assessing the puzzle using a different tact, which can lead to the answer. When working in a group to do anything it’s frequently known as brainstorming. Brainstorming and piggybacking are similar, in that both involve working by thinking out loud. This can also improve your chances of coming to the correct answer, as a puzzler might be on the verge of coming up with an answer, and talking it out can help the group finish the thought. Crossword puzzles initiate deep thinking and creative learning, and doing so in a family group spreads the knowledge. When you consider quiz teams, each person has a different frame of reference, which means they can answer particular sets of questions more comfortably than the other members of the team. The same can be said when it comes to puzzlers. If parents regularly involve their children in the crossword puzzle process they are collaborating to share their knowledge. The majority of puzzles have a theme, and part of the crossword puzzle process is recognizing the pattern which explains the theme. They are also an excellent way to install confidence in your child, and teach them puns, metaphors, and plays on words that are frequently used in crossword puzzles.How you choose to approach your puzzling in a group is up to you, but the process might be made easier provided everyone can read the clues for themselves, as well as see the puzzles themselves. 

Source: Crossword365

How to be better at crosswords

2016-10-01 - You might think you don’t have the mind of a crossword puzzler, however anyone can learn to be better at completing crosswords. There are a number of steps you can take to better understand puzzles, how to solve them, and what steps you can take in order to gather the correct answers. Work in ...

Source: Crossword365

7 reasons crossword puzzles are good for you

2016-09-29 - Crosswords are more than just a great way to pass your time. You may just love solving problems, and find it an excellent hobby, but as it turns out: it’s good for your brain. Researchers have studied the positive effects crossword puzzles can play for your brain provided they are completed regularly. The good news i...

Source: Crossword365

6 Things All Crossword Solvers Have Experienced

2016-09-26 - We’ve been playing crosswords puzzles since 1913 and for some of us they’re part of our routine, for some just a way to spend the time while on the bus or train but either way we’ve all experienced these things while trying to solve them. 1. Knowing that the answer you're thinking of is wrong but it's the o...

Source: Crossword365

Simpsons New York Times Crossword of November 16, 2008 Solved

2016-09-23 - This New York Times Crossword is famous for being featured on the Simpsons Episode 6, Season 20 "Homer And Lisa Exchange Cross Words" which was originally aired on Fox in the US on November 16, 2008 . In this episode, Lisa finds out that she has a talent for solving crossword puzzles, and she enters a...

Source: Crossword365

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