Can a senior learn another language? Does learning another language improve his mind and exercise his brain?
Although it is easier to acquire a new language when you are younger, that doesn’t mean only younger people can do it. Older people can still learn a new language. You can do whatever you want if you set your mind to it, just like a young person. Here are four reasons why seniors should learn a new language.
• A healthier mind
Human brains are like plants. To keep it from withering, it needs attention. In this scenario, brain exercise is the water you give your plant; so, is there anything better for the brain than learning a foreign language? As people grow older, scientists believe that those who speak more than one language are less likely to suffer from mental disorders or mental illnesses like Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Statistic data even shows that when exposed to such illnesses, it usually happens much later and is much less acute. The cognitive abilities of bilinguals are better and more advanced than those of monolinguals. As you learn a language, you activate brain areas directly connected to those responsible for functioning and completing tasks. When your mind acts like that, it won’t allow dementia or Alzheimer’s to take over your mental health.
• A younger mind
To keep yourself mentally young, you also need to take care of your brain just as you care for your skin and seek advice. Despite this, there is a tiny fact to consider: the human brain could be the only living thing in the world that can be maintained by repeated use.
You need to challenge your brain every day to keep it healthy. Changing your routine can sometimes be as simple as taking a different route to the grocery store or reading a book you’ve never read before. However, learning a foreign language raises the bar even higher. By keeping your mind focused on a goal, you improve the functioning of brain areas involved in cognitive function.
• A More Sociable Senior
Other than the medical benefits of learning a new language, you can improve your skills by doing so. Socializing and blending in with the crowd becomes more accessible for people who know a new language.
Learning a new language is undoubtedly an excellent way of exercising your brain, becoming more confident in your day-to-day life, and better handling pressures and stressful situations. Additionally, it adds flexibility to your character, allowing you to interact with others more effectively.
Have you ever heard the famous “It’s never too late” ?! Do you believe in that?! No?! Well, you should do it cause it’s true. It’s not just a motivational sentence to move people forward. It’s a scientific fact indeed!
Learning a new skill, especially a foreign language, counts as an excellent brain training exercise. It means that as a senior, you’re able to learn a new language, and not only that, it’s also beneficial for your brain health and improvement of its performance.
Another benefit of learning another language for seniors is to prevent cognitive diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s by challenging the brain to think differently and improving its cognitive abilities. Everyone has to learn, remember and use new vocab while learning to speak in another language. As a result, short-term memory works way more effectively in bilinguals than in others. See? It’s a whole package, isn’t it?!
Yes, anyone can. Learning a new language is undoubtedly beneficial to anyone’s mind and brain. As long as you’re mentally in reasonable shape and put in enough effort, you can master any language at any age. I learned Indonesian at the age of 38, French at the age of 42, Russian at the age of 50, and Greek at the age of 58. This is typical for a US Foreign Service Officer. My high school Spanish comes back to me every time I go to the farmers’ market. Even though I’m now 72, I’ll be able to speak Farsi fluently if the United States reestablishes diplomatic ties with Iran. Not a problem for me.
Professionals strongly agree that learning a new language or even switching between multiple known languages as a daily routine can be one of the most rewarding acts of service to one’s brain and overall mental health. Learning a new language can increase one’s brain function and decrease the chance of having to meddle with conditions like Alzheimer’s.