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Brain exercises

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -- Keeping ourselves mentally stimulated helps delay the onset of cognitive decline -- but may actually speed up dementia when it eventually sets in.

According to researchers at Rush University in Chicago like solving crossword puzzles, reading and playing games helps the brain's ability to continue functioning normally -- even as dementia-related lesions begin to appear on brain scans.

But -- after dementia is diagnosed, these mentally active patients are likely to have more brain changes -- and may experience a faster rate of cognitive decline than their peers.

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