Jigsaw Puzzles are good for Mental Health

Jigsaw puzzles have existed since the 1700s. They have certainly stood the test of time.

I love doing jigsaw puzzles. Unfortunately, it’s because of an expensive pass-time because I fly through them like there is no tomorrow.

I had taken a pause from doing jigsaw puzzles a few months ago. Between packing up the apartment for our upcoming move and planning a wedding, plus health issues, there didn’t seem to be any time left for it.

I did not realise how much I missed it and how much it helped my mental well-being until yesterday. I received some health results and was feeling quite low yesterday. I purchased a puzzle on a whim. It wasn’t until I opened the box and started working on the puzzle that I realise that having a pass-time allows you to have “me” time, to get out of your own head and concentrate on something other than problems and responsibilities. Working on a jigsaw puzzle is almost like focused meditation. It did me a world of good.

Jigsaw puzzles have benefits to our health and basic well-being. Working on a puzzle keeps the mind active (using both sides of the brain) which can lead to longer life expectancy, better quality of life and reduce certain types of mental illness such as memory loss, dementia and even Alzheimer’s Disease. In addition, the completion of a puzzle or even just the successful placement of one piece encourages the production of dopamine. As a person who struggles with depression, this is quite beneficial.

Working on jigsaw puzzles have also proven to improve the following skills:

  • Problem solving
  • Perception
  • Understanding

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