How Trivia Promotes Brain Health at All Ages

Trivia is a fun and exciting activity for people of all ages. But did you know that playing Trivia has also been proven to provide several neurological benefits?

Written by

Brianna LeCompte

I still remember attending my first Trivia night back in 2013. A group of my coworkers were discussing some options for happy hour venues and when we saw that a spot down the street was hosting a Trivia Night, we decided to go for it. I was instantly hooked. When the opportunity arose to join the Last Call team, I was ecstatic. Working with a talented and creative team to spread my love of trivia across the country-what could be better! I currently manage sales and outreach in our west coast areas. Outside of work, I love to travel and am also an avid equestrian and Disney movie lover.

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Trivia Improves Memory

 

Despite the common misconception that the brain is a muscle, it is actually an organ. But the brain does behave like a muscle in the sense that it becomes stronger with “exercise.” Regularly participating in mental activity can create stronger connections between the nerve cells in the brain. 

 

Taking part in activities that require mental recall – such as Trivia – is an important aspect of keeping the brain healthy, particularly as we age. As psychologist Deborah Stokes, Ph.D., explains, “Retaining information about things we’re interested in can be like exercise for the frontal cortex as the brain ages.”

 

Studies have shown that brain exercises can improve memory, executive functions, and processing speeds. Plus, it can slow age-related changes in the brain and those associated with neurological conditions, like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. By regularly engaging your brain by playing Trivia, you can help your mind stay sharp through all stages of life.

Trivia Enhances Mental Health

 

In addition to helping our brains perform better, Trivia can also make us feel better. This boost in happiness is largely associated with dopamine bursts, which are experienced throughout the game as you answer questions correctly.

 

According to psychology professor John Kounios, Ph.D., “You get a rush or a neuroreward signal or a dopamine burst from winning. I think whenever you’re challenged with a Trivia question and you happen to know it, you get a rush. It’s sort of like gambling.”

 

But while the feel-good effects of Trivia have been compared to the dopamine rush experienced while gambling, it does not pose the same habit-forming and financial risks. Essentially, playing Trivia is a safer way to enjoy the thrill of victory.

Trivia Creates Social Connections

 

Game formats that encourage team play, like Last Call Trivia, create an ideal environment for building and strengthening social bonds. 

 

Much like brain exercises can increase mental performance, there is evidence that socializing can improve and preserve cognitive function. Connecting with loved ones while playing Trivia can reduce stress levels, helping to ward off stress-related ailments.

 

Trivia is also a great way to meet new people, as the questions provide a built-in icebreaker. Whether you’re looking to socialize with your loved ones or build new friendships, Trivia can help you create meaningful connections to improve your mental health and acuity.