Sudoku is a game that rewards many hours of repetitive practice. It is a highly complex mental game that requires a lot of effort that many say has many benefits for the brain. But is it true?
Is Sudoku actually good for your brain?

Just like our need to walk, run, lift weights, and exercise to keep our muscles strong, playing Sudoku is a way to exercise our brain “muscles.” Playing Sudoku has many benefits for your brain; you’ll train skills you already have and also acquire some new ones.

What benefits does Sudoku have for your brain?

A man playing sudoku which good for brain


Sudoku demands a level of concentration that just isn’t necessary for most other kinds of puzzles. Simple math games, crosswords, word searches and so on can all be done easily. But to solve a sudoku grid effectively, it’s necessary to hold a lot of information in short term memory at once. Losing focus or lacking concentration can lead to mistakes or simply not being able to find a solution. Studies show that concentration is like a muscle and that repeated training leads to long-term improvement.


Sudoku puzzles are a great way to improve your problem-solving skills. This is because you have to think outside the box to Sudoku to solve these puzzles. As puzzles grow in size, complexity, or both, our brain will have to find new ways to solve them. Thus, what started as an easy game can soon become a fun and rewarding exercise in lateral thinking.


The American Alzheimer’s Association has recommended Sudoku as a “brain game” that might help decrease the danger of Alzheimer’s disease, and some researchers say that playing mentally stimulating games and puzzle games like Sudoku is a good way to reduce our risk of dementia as we get older.

What part of the brain does Sudoku use?

According to the study conducted by Patil Ashlesh et al. (2020), both the medial and lateral regions of the prefrontal cortex of the brain are activated when the participant is solving the Sudoku task. The prefrontal cortex is part of the brain that is mainly involved in attention, working memory, decision-making, and problem-solving. However, the medial regions of the prefrontal cortex play a differential role, especially when we consider the row and the column rules of Sudoku. Thus, Sudoku may be used for cognitive remediation training in neuropsychiatric disorders involving the prefrontal cortex.

Does being good at Sudoku indicate high IQ?

IQ, short for intelligence quotient, is a measure of a person’s reasoning ability. It is supposed to gauge how well someone can use information and logic to answer questions or make predictions. According to the International Journal of Computer Applications, an individual who is skilled at solving Sudoku puzzles likely has a high general IQ. But still, there is no substantive evidence that brain teasers like Sudoku actually improve intellect. Scientists still believe that the measure of human intelligence or cognitive ability is controversial.

However, what we are sure about is that scientists have long held the belief that problem-solving activities like Sudoku can improve brain function and protect the mind from cognitive decline later in life.