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Brain Teasers for Adults

We all know how important it is to keep our minds sharp. Luckily, there are some really simple and fun ways in which we can make sure our brains stay active every day.

Brain teasers for adults, such as memory games, word searches and brain training exercises, can be exciting, challenging and rewarding. They are also the perfect way to give your cognitive health a boost from the comfort of your chair!

What are brain teasers?

Put simply, ‘brain teasers’ is a general term used for games and activities which are designed to exercise and challenge you mentally. The most common types are crosswords, word searches and sudoku puzzles, but you’ll also find lots of other options which use logic, memory and visual elements to give your brain a real workout.

Pattern-based puzzles are particularly popular, especially those which require you to spot an object that’s the odd one out. There are also logical quizzes and word games where you have to find the common denominator between a group of words. Which brain teaser is best for you will depend entirely on your personal preferences. Why not try out a few to start with to get a feel for what you do and don’t like?

Brain Teasers for Adults

The benefits of brain training games

Opinions differ on how much brain games for adults can actually boost cognitive health. While some believe in the power of games to improve memory skills, boost concentration levels and increase how fast the brain can process information, others suggest they have less of an impact.

Nevertheless, a lot of research does show that brain teasers for adults or brain training games can do wonders for helping to relieve stress and anxiety. Taking your mind off other issues in your life by playing some fun adult memory games might, therefore, help enhance your mood and stave off any boredom.

Best brain teasers: ideas and inspiration

Whether you want a calming activity to add to your daily schedule or a challenging puzzle that will test your brainpower, there are plenty of options out there. Here are some of our top picks when it comes to brain training exercises:

Word searches

Word searches are undeniably popular, and some scientists even suggest that they can go some way in helping to improve brain function. You’ll find plenty of word search booklets in your local supermarket or newsagents.

You could also have a go at completing some online using a site like The Word Search. It has a huge database of word searches to choose between, some of which are specific to certain topics. You can choose to complete them online using your computer or tablet or print them off to do by hand.

Word search


You’ll likely have come across riddles before, whether that’s in a book you’ve read or in a TV show/film you’ve watched. The main aim of them is to get you thinking outside of the box by solving a problem via clues hidden inside a poem, story or another piece of prose.

Riddles can be a lot of fun to solve, and you’ll feel a real sense of achievement when you do! Braingle has a brilliant selection of riddles to help flex your brain’s muscles. They’re split up into categories, with the site’s seven-second riddles being particularly good if you fancy solving multiple puzzles in a short space of time!



This brain training game has been around for over 150 years, and it relies on both logic and maths. The basic format of sudoku sees you fill in a grid of 3×3 squares. Every square must be filled in with a number from 1 to 9. The numbers in the horizontal and vertical lines must also do the same

If you’ve not tried a sudoku puzzle before, you must! You don’t need to have perfect numerical skills to complete one, either. They come in a range of different levels, from ‘easy’ to ‘evil’ (extra hard!). Again, you can buy whole booklets of sudoku puzzles to try at home or find them online ready to print out at websites like Web Sudoku.



If you’ve ever played spot the difference before, this brain teaser has a very similar premise. Instead of looking at two different images to determine what’s different between them, though, you’ll be searching for a single object, person or animal in just one.

The pictures are usually quite detailed and colourful, making it tricky to spot any hidden items. You’ll find a selection of them online. There’s also the option of buying a seek-and-find jigsaw puzzle. Put the puzzle together as normal and then look at the box for a list of things to find! Zazzle sells a whole range of them, including the classic, Where’s Wally.



We can’t talk about brain teaser puzzles for adults without mentioning crosswords! These much-loved games are played worldwide and will not only test your knowledge, but also give you a chance to activate parts of your memory that you haven’t used in a while.

Crosswords come in all shapes, sizes and levels of difficulty. You’ll often find them at the back of newspapers or magazines. Alternatively, you could buy a whole booklet to keep you entertained for a few weeks or check out some online versions. Great sites to browse for free crosswords include Boatload Puzzles and The Guardian Crosswords. also releases a daily crossword puzzle that’s great for those who are new to the world of brain teasers.


We hope you’ve found our guide to brain teasers for adults inspiring. As well as having a go at some of the brain games we’ve suggested above, why not test your knowledge with our fantastic weekly general knowledge quiz

At HSL, your comfort and wellbeing are our top priority, so we offer a range of practical and comfortable chairs and sofas that have all been approved by our Occupational Therapist, Julie Jennings Dip COT HCPC, to support a healthy lifestyle.

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