Bored? Games! The Benefits of Family Game Night

Family time has seen a resurgence lately­, and it looks different from what you may think. Faces aren’t glued to screens, conversation flows like a river, and laughter can be heard in every corner.

What has families so captivated? Games. Yes, good old-fashioned board games, including puzzles and card games, are making a comeback. And for many good reasons.

The Benefits of Board Games

Board games may not only take the bored out of being at home. They may also help you and your family:

Families are discovering that they can accomplish all those things — together — when they gather around a board, a puzzle or cards.

Board games help us come together in a way that social media doesn’t.

It’s beneficial even if just one of your family members plays a game lying around the house. That’s why people who may suddenly feel isolated for one reason or another are drawn to building puzzles. It gives them a sense of accomplishment to build a puzzle, or solve a card game, and that can go a long way toward shaking off solitude.

For older adults, there are extra benefits. Games may ward off dementia and Alzheimer’s. According to studies, the “intense mental activity” of a game such as chess may keep your mind sharp.

How to Bring Family Game Night to Your Home

  • Take an inventory of the games you already have. Will these games do? Or should you buy a new or acclaimed game to spice up the party?
  • Give family members a choice from among a few games to make them part of the decision-making process.
  • Buy or make snacks and beverages that you know everyone likes. Tip: Go for non-messy options, like our no-bake oatmeal energy bites, to avoid sticky game pieces or crumb-filled card boxes.
  • Make a mental list of things you know have bothered family members in the past, and try to come up with solutions to avoid clashes between your gamers.
  • Lastly, pick a time and day that everyone can play, and consider making it a weekly or monthly event to give the whole fam something to look forward to!

Begin a family game night, and you may discover what other families already have: Playing board games may uplift your spirits, sharpen your brainpower and help blow off steam — while building confidence, creativity and communication.

And they’re also good, cost-effective fun. Now that’s a win-win.

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