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Put on your thinking app

The brain is one of the most important organs in our body.  It controls all our movements, whether voluntary or involuntary. It controls how our heart beats, how our muscles move, how we digest our food; practically, all bodily functions that we need to survive is controlled by this vital organ.

Hence, it is essential for us to take care of our brain.  Although stress management, exercise, sleep and proper diet can significantly keep our brains in shape, mental stimulation can likewise help improve cognitive function.

Here are 8 of the best brain training apps that you can download on your smartphone or tablet.

1. Lumosity

This app contains games that are classified according to each type of cognitive thinking: memory, attention, processing speed, thinking flexibility, and problem solving skill. Users are given three games for one session.  Games are adjusted according to one’s performance from previous sessions. One would have to play three games against the clock.  These games will test how fast you can think and solve problems. Luminosity tracks your progress for each session; so you will see how your brain has improved in cognitive thinking since you’ve started using the app.

2. Elevate2

Elevate is noticeably similar to Lumosity.  It also has games that will test your brain and track your progress.  One unique feature that the Elevate app has is its Adaptive Difficulty Progression.  This feature makes the games progressively harder each level or session.  Also, if you own an Apple Watch, you will be able to play 4 additional mini-games in your smartwatch.   You will also be able to track and review your performance through a separate app specially designed for your Apple Watch — the Elevate Dash.

3. Happify3

Happiness is the most important emotion that everyone needs in order to have a brain-healthy lifestyle. It is interesting to note that in every activity, the happier you are, the better your brain functions. Happify is designed specifically to improve upon that notion.  Select from up to 30+ tracks and sessions that includes games and activities that will surely uplift spirits through each use.

Each track differs from one another in terms of the topics or subjects that they focus on.   You will also be given a progress report for each track that you finish. For example, if you are having a lot of negative thoughts for the day, you can choose the “Conquer your negative thoughts” track and it will give you advice and tips on how to erase negative thoughts.  The app also provides exercises and activities in order for you to relax and calm your mind.

4. BrainyApp4

More than just providing brain games, BrainyApp serves as a guide on how to have a brain-healthy lifestyle. The app gives tips not only on what is good for your brain, but also for your heart, which is another vital organ in the body.

Another interesting feature the BrainyApp has is the Brain Healthy Survey.  With this feature, you will be able to send your results in the app and subsequently receive a feedback based on your performance. BrainyApp also gives one health fact daily; so not only will you have fun while using the app, but you will also learn more about your brain and how to take care of it.

5. BrainHQ5

Posit Science’s BrainHQ is an app designed to test “brain plasticity”. This is a term used to show how brain activity can change and improve over time. You will be able to monitor how much change your brain is going through each day by answering exercises found on the app itself.

The app is pretty straightforward. It doesn’t have the same type of games found on the apps mentioned above.  Instead, it gives exams, exercises, and quizzes that you would often find in actual brain training sessions. Some may prefer this simpler brain training method, as it would make them more focused on answering the exercises rather than by being distracted and amazed with the technology and intricacies found on other apps.

6. Eidetic7

Steven Waterfall, a renowned app designer, created Eidetic.  The app tests and improves memory through a cognitive thinking technique called spaced repetition.  The app will help you memorize important names, number, facts, and words that you would often unintentionally forget. You will be able to build digital flashcards that are divided into different categories: Dictionary, Phone Number, Fact, Quote, and Note. Once you have enough flashcards, the app will provide an exam. The exam contains repeating questions related to each flashcard that you’ve added in the archive.

This app is perfect for anyone who wants to remember a specific fact or quote for an exam.  The app is also helpful for anyone who wants to keep track of telephone or cellphone numbers of friends or loved ones in times of emergency.

7. Fit Brains Trainer8

This brain trainer app tests both IQ and EQ (cognitive and emotional intelligence). As all the other apps mentioned only concentrate on improving cognitive intelligence, this feature is quite different.

The app provides two types of tests.  The first one focuses on the six major functional areas of the brain: Memory, Speed of Thinking, Concentration, Problem Solving, Language, and Visual-Spatial Processing.  The second type specializes on testing EQ — the ability to manage and recognize not only the emotion of other people, but also your own.  The tests focus on 3 key areas: Self-Control, Self-Awareness, and Social Awareness. What’s interesting is that your ability to control emotions can also be a key element in making your mind sharper.  It makes you more focused on a specific task rather than letting your overflowing emotions get to you.

8. ReliefLink6

ReliefLink is designed to monitor and improve your mental health. It focuses on preventing several mental health problems like depression, suicidal thoughts, and many others by providing coping methods through voice recordings that speak out positivity to each listener. The app also tracks your daily mood and thoughts.  You will be able to use the results from this app to evaluate your mental health status.

The ReliefLink gives relaxation exercises that will free your mind from any stress and burden. Also while using the app, you will be able to listen to soothing and relaxing music.

The ReliefLink app specializes more on mental health rather than cognitive thinking.  It is crucial to take care of the overall brain function.  The brain will not be able to work effectively if one of the faculties of thinking is disrupted.  To have an all-around experience in taking care of your brain, ReliefLink is a good companion app for any brain trainer programs on your mobile device. (By CHRISTIAN ABE GARCIA)