Dozens of invited guests and residents recently filled the Performing Arts Center at Edgemere to hear a presentation from Robert Winningham, Ph.D., about brain health. Dr. Winningham has spent the last two decades researching memory impairments, and has trained thousands of professionals on mental-stimulation programs. During the presentation, Winningham shared cognitive stimulation interventions which can be used to exercise targeted regions of the brain. Additionally, he discussed the latest research on the effects of physical exercise, nutrition and social support on health and how they can reduce the likelihood of developing dementia. According to a 2016 study, overall dementia risk has dropped from 20 cases per 1,000 people in the early 1990s to fewer than 17 cases per 1,000 people. Winningham says the possible reasons for the 25 percent drop include things such as controlling cardiovascular risk factors, better education and greater awareness of the importance of physical exercise.
“Dr. Winningham gave an eye-opening presentation to guests and residents, one that inspired motivation and hope,” said Vanessa Curtright Bowles, director of sales and marketing at Edgemere. “We understand the importance of hosting educational and timely events that enhance lifelong learning. It was fascinating to hear the latest research on how proper food and exercise are good for the brain and memory. We offer residents a variety of opportunities that enable them to continue to lead active and engaged lives in a community that caters to their personal preferences. We feel Dr. Winningham’s presentation benefited many people, and hopefully it inspires more people to focus on eating well and exercising.”
Winningham is a full-time professor and interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Western Oregon University (WOU) where he teaches both psychology and gerontology courses. He creates brain stimulation activities for thousands of communities and rehabilitation facilities as a part of “Dr. Rob’s Cranium Crunches” on activityconnection.com and helps create cognitive stimulation video games for linkedsenior.com. In addition, he has published two books: “Train Your Brain: How to Maximize Memory Ability in Older Adulthood” and “Cranium Crunches: Brain Exercises to Maximize Memory Ability.”
Each Wednesday in August, Edgemere residents will have a chance to attend one of Winningham’s virtual classes. The five-week course created by Masterpiece Living® will lead residents through topics such as the role of nutrition and physical exercise on cognition and how to stay motivated to enhance brain health.