What is intellectual health?
Typically people think of intellectual health as academic knowledge, but in fact, it also entails creativity, general knowledge, and common sense. Our thoughts are influenced by each of these factors, which in turn influence our decisions. It’s not only our IQ that matters when it comes to decision making, often times our general knowledge and common sense are more important.
As with all other dimensions of health, intellectual health also requires a balance. Maintaining proper nutritional habits and exercising are essential components to our energy levels and willingness to develop into healthy individuals. We hold the key to the limits of our own development. Allowing ourselves to interact with people of various backgrounds introduces us to other viewpoints and expands our creative thought processes. Exposure to diverse experiences also allows for an open-mind.
How can I improve my intellectual health?
Dr. Mark Tramo, a neuroscientist at Harvard Medical School says,
We believe a handful of neural codes is used by the brain, so exercising the brain through music strengthens other cognitive skills. It’s a lot like saying “if you exercise your body by running, you enhance your ability not only to run but also to play soccer or basketball.”
- Diverse interactions: it’s a well-known fact that people learn from those around them.
- Experiencing it: if there is something in particular you want to know more about, give it a try or take a trip to visit it and learn about it first-hand.
- Playing games: games such as Trivial Pursuit, Jeopardy, and Cranium can be a fun way to add to your knowledge base while relieving stress! Even games such as Taboo require “thinking outside the box” and encourage creativity.
- Reading informally or taking an unnecessary class that interests you will definitely increase your knowledge and stimulate your intellectual health.
- Asking questions: don’t hesitate to ask questions or express your curiosity to the people around you whether they are professors or laborers, coworkers, family or friends, or simply acquaintances. This type of intellectual stimulation also fosters social health!
- Testing yourself: try some of the quizzes online!
Relaxation, can help to improve your memory!!!!
The only good is knowledge, and the only evil is ignorance.
- By spotting the earliest signs of Alzheimer’s disease and differentiating them from those of other dementias or drug interactions, geriatric psychiatrists can prescribe drugs to improve brain function soon enough to slow the progression of the disease. (AARP)
- Researchers are learning that such activities as board games or cards, playing a musical instrument, reading, writing for pleasure, doing crossword puzzles, and even ordinary social interaction increase mental function. A 21-year study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2003 found that performing one such activity—playing Risk or Scrabble, for example—just once a week is associated with a 7 percent reduced risk of dementia, including Alzheimer’s. Performing more activities more frequently may cut risk as much as 63 percent.
- Experts say that substance abuse among older Americans, including the abuse of alcohol and prescription and over-the-counter drugs, is under-diagnosed and under-treated; geriatric psychiatrists can often see warning signs that primary care physicians miss. (AARP)
- Americans 65 and older have the highest suicide rate of any age group; they account for about 13 percent of the population but nearly 19 percent of all suicides. Half of all older people who commit suicide had seen their doctor in the month before their death. Geriatric psychiatrists may be able to spot hidden suicidal tendencies that elude other doctors. (AARP)