August 18, 2019 Herb 0Comment

“Bingo.”  On any given day of the week you can hear this word yelled by seniors at assisted Living facilities throughout the country, who have all the required numbers, or “pattern” to win.   It’s considered a game of change and its full play.

It’s easy to play Bingo.  A player must match numbers (one of 75) printed on a cardboard card which contains 25 squares arranged in five vertical columns and five side by side rows. The caller randomly draws a small wooden ball from a small cage and the players mark the picked number with a tile.  When the selected numbers are arranged in a row, column, or horizontal, the player shouts “Bingo” to alert everyone to the wining card.  The player wins the game when the numbers are verified.  With the clearing of the tiles on the Bingo card, a new game begins.

Playing Bingo Photo Credit: City of Cambridge, Massachusetts

 “Bingo.”  It’s an engaging, competitive, game of change and it’s fun to play, too.   Researchers are now telling us that playing Bingo is good for your health and well-being.

Bingo gives residents who gather in the common areas of the facility a chance to socialize. Everybody is in the same room chatting and catching up with each other while the number are being called.  Enhancing your network by socially interacting with others can increase your happiness and improve your health.

According to researchers, Bingo can increase a player’s cognitive abilities. Mental flexibility and alertness are required to be aware of which specific numbers are called.  One study found that older Bingo had improved short term memory and increased concentration levels and memory retention than non-Bingo players.

Bingo, a fast-paced game, can enhance hand-eye coordination of the older players as these reflexes and coordination declines with aging.  Players must quickly mark their cards when the numbers are called.  Researchers say that improving hand-eye coordination can delay the start of mobility issues.

Enhancing Your Recovery

Bingo, taking place in a social setting, may even reduce the recovery time it takes to heal from an injury, illness or even surgery, it may even shorten your hospital stay, say researchers.  It may even decrease the risk of depression, they note.  Laughter during Bingo, decreasing stress hormones, and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, improving resistance to disease. It also triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s feel-good chemicals, that promotes a person’s sense of well-being.   Laughter is can also improve your cardiac health by lowering your blood pressure.

Bingo can benefit your health, improve your cognitive abilities and mood.  If you don’t play Bingo, why not consider doing so.

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