Brain Health Facts
Brain health refers to how well your brain functions across several areas. Aspects of brain health include:
- Cognitive health – how well you think, learn and remember
- Motor function – how well you make and control your movements, including balance
- Emotional function – how well you interpret and respond to emotions (both pleasant and unpleasant)
- Tactile function – how well you feel and respond to sensations of touch, including pleasure, pain and temperature.
Brain health can be affected by age-related changes in the brain; injuries, such as stroke or traumatic brain injury; mood disorders, like depression, substance abuse or addiction; and diseases, like Alzheimer’s disease.
Maintaining Brain Health
While some factors affecting brain health cannot be changed, research suggests there are steps to help maintain brain health as you age, including:
- Staying physically active;
- Reducing and managing the risk for cardiovascular diseases by managing blood pressure, weight, and cholesterol levels;
- Regularly discussing any noticeable changes in cognitive abilities or memory with family members;
- Regularly reviewing current health conditions with a physician and talking about any medications and supplements being taken that may impact cognitive health;
- Staying socially and intellectually engaged; and
- Getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night as recommended.