Last updated on March 13th, 2023 at 04:42 pm
Have you noticed that everything old is new again–vinyl records, board games, even coloring books? You can add jigsaw puzzles to that list too. We all need an occasional break from the constant stream of information coming at us from every direction. Jigsaw puzzles are the perfect escape, and spending time “puzzling” is even good for you.
7 Benefits of Jigsaw Puzzles
Less screen time
We know that too much time in front of our screens is not healthy, and working on a jigsaw puzzle is a great alternative. Too much screen time is associated with sleep problems, weight gain, and eye strain. If you normally scroll through your phone to unwind, try doing a puzzle. You’ll soon see it’s infinitely more relaxing than reading the latest news headlines. [Also read: 6 Tips for Setting Screen-Time Boundaries]
Many people use jigsaw puzzles as stress-reliever. Focusing all your attention on one image, as you sort through puzzle pieces, can be a very meditative experience. It’s a wonderful way to tune out the world and relax at the end of a busy day.
A great option that offers a satisfying challenge is 1,000-piece puzzles for adults, as these are not too overwhelming, but still require focus and attention to detail. With such a variety of themes available, from scenic landscapes to famous works of art, there’s something for everyone.
Improving your visual-spatial skills
When you do a puzzle, you may not realize it, but you’re using the visual-spatial areas of your brain. As you look at each puzzle piece (its shape, color, and pattern) while trying to determine where it fits, your brain is hard at work. Sharpening these kinds of problem-solving skills can help you with things like driving and directions.
Improvement in short-term memory
Doing a jigsaw puzzle is a little like a game of memory. Looking through the puzzle pieces for just the right one, your memory holds onto the pieces your eyes have scanned. You think “didn’t I just see the piece that fits here?” You also need to hold onto the memory of the blank spot you need to fill while searching through the puzzle pieces. This practice builds connections in the brain. And, the short-term memory boost can help with remembering where you put your car keys or not forgetting what you need at the grocery store.
Puzzles are the perfect social activity
As mentioned above, lots of people like to do puzzles as a kind of escape, but puzzles can also be a fun family or couples activity. It gets the family together, off their screens, and promotes conversation. Working together toward a goal is a bonding experience and can even translate into everyone getting along better.
Another of the benefits of jigsaw puzzles is that they’ll help improve your fine motor skills. This is important for young people and older people in particular. For children, puzzles help them learn coordination and fine motor skills, and for older people, jigsaw puzzles are a wonderful way to exercise their fingers and hands.
May stave off Alzheimer’s and dementia
There are things you can do to give yourself the best chance of staying mentally sharp as you age–exercise, getting enough sleep, and eating a healthy diet are a few. Keeping your brain active is another way to potentially stave off dementia and Alzheimer’s. Working jigsaw puzzles requires several different skills and may offer some protection for the aging brain.
You can even work jigsaw puzzles online. They’re super convenient, since you don’t need a large area to work on them, and you can do them anytime.
Examples of websites where you can play online jigsaw puzzles for free include I’m a puzzle and Jigsaw 365. You can access various categories of jigsaw puzzles, so you’ll most likely find one that suits your taste.
Both websites also allow you to create your own jigsaw puzzle. You can upload an image and start playing immediately. So, if there’s any image you’ve ever considered solving as a jigsaw puzzle, this is your opportunity.
The benefits of jigsaw puzzles are undeniable, so what are you waiting for? Pick your favorite subject matter, or have a custom jigsaw puzzle made from your favorite photo, and start puzzling!7 Amazing Benefits of Jigsaw Puzzles | #jigsawpuzzles #puzzles #health #mentalhealth #selfcare Click To Tweet