Brain training depression

Does anyone else find brain training depressing?

Certain types of exercises give me the really bad headaches before I'm aware of what's causing it.

Then when I look at the scores I just want to chuck the phone/tablet out of the window.

In those ones my score have not got any better at all while I have been able to improve other scores.

I think I will stick to the ones that I can do from now on or should I chuck the lot and stick with puzzles and crosswords?

Posting this tonight because I checked how long I'd been using a brain training app and it is over 2 years.

Love n hugs


19 Replies

  • No Random but I don't do a lot of it. I find life is brain training enough and work. I have a building company with 5 staff and I work on site myself too on the carpentry side and thats enough to tax my brain. Although that said I do like logic puzzles like working stuff out, just like work really. Have a great Monday. XX Nick

  • Hiya, maybe strip it back? Pick one of the programmes (the one where score is improving) and discard the others - just sounds overwhelming reading it!

    My husband suffers with depression post-bleed and finds keeping any brain training activity regular and simple very helpful.

    I guess puzzles can be way more varied, just go with your mood at the time. But for the more score-based software, pick a fav and stick with that for a while. If, after time, that feels deflating, just stop. You don't need the pressure.

    Take care .x.

  • Thanks Jo

    I am a lot happier this morning. I think I will stick with the paper puzzles and crosswords.

    I know that is getting better because I couldn't even do a crossword on a cereal packet for a year after bi and last week I managed to solve one easy crytpic clue.

    Thanks again



  • Morning ,

    I didn't go down that route at all and think I would've totally flipped if I had suddenly or randomly " scored " less than yesterday/last week/whenever ..... Glad I just stuck to my puzzle books and short stories anthology once I could think about reading againafter several months ...

    Guess we are all different - wonder if it's the actual use of any screen that is causing headaches ? Presumably eyes tested recently ?

    Maybe too much pressure to "score" ? Give it a rest for a while perhaps and try something different maybe - some sort of sewing ? art work ? ... my life saver was cooking - following a recipe to its conclusion gave me a sense of satisfaction....

    Good luck - don't be hard on yourself :-) x

  • Thanks Moo

    It's not the screen as I limit the time to about 20mns.

    Eyes have been tested and no need for new specs.

    In the past year I have crocheted 3 blankets and I'm really proud of that.

    I was just feeling rotten because of the headaches and the reminder that that specific part of my b****y brain is "non recoverable".



  • Oh, bless, Random,

    Don't beat yourself up over the bits you can't do, just look at all the things you can ! : )

    I find everyday living quite enough for the old 'cowering walnut' to cope with ! It is surprising how many memory, monetary and organisation skillls are needed all the time.

    Oh, just noticed an extra free l in skills - have that one on me ! Did I mention spelling skills in my list ? !

    Wouldn't even know where to start on crochet but am great at tangling up string : )

    Do what you enjoy, that gives you satisfaction : ) x

  • I know when I play Lumosity and Peak, there are times when I don't score so well!

    This used to really annoy and frustrate me, but now I leave that game if I'm not scoring so well!

    It's like the little jog I do every morning, all 150m of it, sometimes my right leg is ok, and other times, like this morning, it just doesn't want to work!

    I haven't quite got all my answers, but I know if I am tired, cold, or not feeling so good, all my weaker points are highlighted!

    The main thing is to enjoy your brain training, and the minute it is not fun, then change it!

    God luck and all the best with your puzzles and crosswords!


  • Hi Random.

    Think of your brain as a muscle. It hurts when being exercisedand remember not to overdo it.

    I do them not to increase my score but so as to maintain it. I feel I have reached my level and just am happy to stay there.

    Good luck with the work out.

    Pax xx

  • Hi Pax

    Problem is I have a thoroughly competitive streak especially with myself.

    I totally get what you're saying about maintaining. I do that with my physio. EVERY day I do the exercises just to maintain what I've got. I know that if I didn't do them I couldn't walk or read even with the typoscope.

    You would think it would be easy to transfer that to brain training..........hang on a moment....... I've got a reframe that will work...............thanks for the light bulb moment!!!!!!!!!!!

    It's not brain training its brain maintaining.

    Pax you're a genius!

    Thank you

    Lovenhugs and have a grrrrrrrreat day


  • I now tend to stick to to general puzzles and just use my brain training as an occasional top up.

    I can remember some years ago after avidly doing brain training retaking a cognitive assessment. Then being disapionted at no actual medical improvement.

    Apparently we adapt to compensate any diffisionsy but medically stay the same.

    The outcome is means you ending up being able to achieve more without actually getting better.

    Moral ...never give up trying may not get better but you WILL improve.

    Enough being sensible for now...I am off to be crazy for a while.

    Pax xxx

  • Pax

    Again you are brilliant.

    It's funny you should say that. My last visit to specialist (early December) there was a discussion that went along the lines of

    S "are you still doing the exercises?"

    me "yes"

    S "is your reading any better?"

    Me "no but I have managed to read 2 paperbacks with the typoscope"

    S " I am glad you said that because it cannot get any better"

    Me " I think I've come to terms with that but I am getting better at adapting to it."

    S "well done and keep doing what you are doing"

    Here's to continued adapting!



  • I haven't tried any brain training, maybe I should give it a go. Though like Nick, I suppose when I'm trying to do more complex stuff at work, that could be training enough. I do find it quite difficult to do the more complex tasks at work now and feel like I tinker around the edges.

    As for headaches, I tend to get them if I do something that is more complex than my comfort zone, I guess it is like a hard work out for our brains.


  • I remember one test where you had to view pictures of hands in different positions and work out if they were left or right hands. Simple enough you would think but it really did affect me - splitting headache, nausea had to shut down the computer and myself

  • The company who makes one of the well known "brain training" programmes was recently fined for false advertising. It found there is zero proof that they help at all.

    Just sayin' ..... ;)

  • No proof, but sound logic. Challenging the brain is what drives neuroplasticity.

  • I don't dispute the "use it or lose it" principle - of course any kind of exercise is good for us...BUT the claims made by manufacturers have been proven to be false and therefore people should not get disheartened when they try these brain training doodahs and find they are getting nowhere fast...

  • Reading the last few replies I wonder if there should be some sort of distinction between brain training in the "normal" population and as I am going to call it from now on brain maintaining for those of us living with bi.

    I had been hoping that working on almost identical tasks to the one that made me I'll during the neuropsychology assessment would generate some progress but alas there is none, zip, zero.

    Honestly I've decided to stick with the puzzles that don't offer scores and to continue to find ways around the issues as much as I can.


  • Thank you for posting about this.....I also started the worst headache I'd ever had by trying to persevere with a word search puzzle. After that I stopped all puzzles permanently (as the headache was so frightening and severe). I plucked up the courage to start again a month later, but it's a shame......having rigidly followed the advice of the neuro team visitor and tried doing puzzles every day, I haven't kept it up. It really was the worst headache I've ever had. My partner wanted to take me to hospital but I honestly just wanted to go to sleep and not wake up. Two months on and things are improving so a couple of weeks ago I downloaded a brain training app. Unfortunately my memory isn't 100% at the minute, so I completely forgot I'd downloaded it. It was a free app which offered in app purchases. Last week I got an email from the app company with a special offer about trying their premium membership. I couldn't believe I'd downloaded something and then forgotten all about it within 24 hours. Thank goodness they contacted me or I mightn't have ever tried it puzzles seem to be 'speed/performance' based rather than showing scores as you'd expect in other games, so yes it might be a bit depressing if I don't improve, but I'll give it a go now I've remembered I've got it. I used to use an app called Dropwords (free version) which isn't quite such a competitor based app. You can view your score on a leader board at the end, but it basically only tells you how you've scored can just keep playing for fun without comparing your score if you wish. Good luck with it......:) you're not alone.

  • Luminosity I use: it's not easy. I ensure I have relaxed before I exercise my brain. Cheered up by my increased results!

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