Brain Health & Wellness Center

Brain Health & Wellness Center

Like many of us living in Hawaii, we hope to live a long and productive life.  The health of your brain is just as important as the health of the rest of your body. Hawaii Pacific Neuroscience Brain Health & Wellness Center (BHW) is the first of its kind in Hawaii to help you sharpen and improve your mental fitness. Paying attention to your brain health will help you enjoy a fulfilling, productive career and, later on, an active and meaningful retirement.

Hawaii Pacific Neuroscience Brain Health & Wellness Center is a preventive program, geared to healthy adults of any age who wish to keep their memories clear and their cognition sharp over time.  Brain Health & Wellness is a good fit if you’re active high achieving professional who wants to stay at the top of your game. It is also a good fit if you are concerned about occasional memory lapses including those associated with aging, such as:

  • Forgetting where you’ve put your phone
  • Having difficulty remembering computer passwords
  • Forgetting your car keys
  • Having a new colleague’s name escape you

To find out if Brain Health & Wellness will benefit you, our multidisciplinary neuroscience or brain specialists will first perform a thorough assessment which may include a full medical or neurological assessment to determine your brain health.  If evaluation demon­strates that our program can benefit you, we will schedule your Brain Health & Wellness appointments.

How our program can help you

Brain Health & Wellness offers a variety of activities to help you maximize your memory and stay mentally sharp. These include:

  • Cognitive exercises: Stretch your mind with memorization tools, with gaming, and with integrated sensory-motor activities to engage multiple brain domains simultaneously to enhance beauty and meaning in your life.
  • Nutrition education: Learn about the differences between whole foods and processed foods and between real foods and manu­factured calories, and how these distinctions have important consequences for your brain.
  • Physical activity: Focus on cardiovascular and interval training, balance and posture. Learn how to increase opportunities to move throughout the day so as to enhance the flow of nutrients and oxygen to your brain
  • Relaxation training: Discover how to use imagery, meditation, and mindfulness to lower your stress levels and protect your brain function.

Guidance from a team of experts

A team of multidisciplinary specialists including neurologists, psychologist, neuropsychologists, geriatrician led by a nurse practitioner, Dr. Pokii Balaz will guide you through the series of shared medical appointments. The team includes experts on:

  • Brain Health & Neuroscience
  • Nutrition
  • Exercise physiology
  • Meditation

As part of the program, you’ll also develop a personalized handbook that contains a customized set of handouts and tools focusing on your particular areas of interest and brain health

Learning in a shared setting

Brain Health & Wellness involves a series of shared medical appointments. The shared medical appointment model allows you to participate with others who share similar brain health concerns. The unique appointments offer distinct advantages. You will:

  • Enjoy increased time with your medical providers.
  • Obtain more information than you would from an individual appointment, as you learn from others’ comments and interac­tions with experts.
  • Benefit from the support of others in the group.

Being proactive about brain health

Routine screenings for high blood pressure, body mass index and cholesterol levels provide insight into how to take steps to protect our future health. Taking steps to protect your brain health is equally important.   Conditions such as menopause, chronic stress, depression, and anxiety all affect memory and concentration. The risk of memory loss may also increase with stroke, heart attack, thyroid disease, vitamin deficiencies, celiac disease and irritable bowel, among many other medical conditions.

Whether or not a personal or family medical history increases your risk of memory loss, or you simply want to improve your memory and focus, research shows that you can build your brainpower. The keys are to engage in meaningful activities, exercise regu­larly and learn new skills that require concentration — and Brain Health & Wellness allows you to do just that.

Covered by most plans

Shared medical appointments are covered by most insurance plans. Participants are responsible for insurance copays for each appointment and for a one-time charge for program materials.

Dr. Pokii Balaz
Director, Brain Health & Wellness Center
Hawaii Pacific Neuroscience