Frequently Asked Questions
Welcome to the Staying Sharp FAQs. Below you’ll find a list of our most commonly asked questions about the Staying Sharp platform. Want to learn more about AARP or have questions about your membership? Visit the AARP FAQs.
What is the price of Staying Sharp?
Staying Sharp is an AARP member benefit with an option to add access to the Brain Health Assessment developed by scientists, used by physicians and offered by AARP for 9,000 AARP Rewards points or a onetime purchase of $14. Not ready to buy? Members can try three free tests first.
Not an AARP Rewards member yet? Enroll in AARP Rewards.
If you are not an AARP member, you can purchase the entire program with the Assessment, for $60 per year.
How do I cancel my Staying Sharp nonmember subscription?
Email StayingSharpHelp@aarp.org or call 866-747-7512 to cancel your subscription. Please note, this is only for AARP nonmembers who want to cancel their annual subscription.
What is Staying Sharp?
Staying Sharp is a program that shows you how to incorporate the six pillars of brain health into your daily life. The pillars follow guidance from the Global Council on Brain Health whose goal is to provide simple steps people can take every day to learn about brain health and live life to the fullest.
How do I activate my AARP Staying Member Benefit?
Go to the Staying Sharp Get Started page and log in with your AARP member account. After logging in, click the Activate button and start exploring all Staying Sharp has to offer.
If you are a member and need to create an account, go to the registration page. After you've registered, and logged into the Staying Sharp website, click the Activate button and start exploring all that Staying Sharp has to offer.
Where do I start?
Start by exploring articles, activities, recipes, videos, Staying Sharp Brain Health Challenges and more on your own.
If you want personalized recommendations, you can choose to add access to the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment. There is a onetime payment of $7 for AARP Members, or AARP Rewards members can redeem 9,000 points for a digital gift card to take the Assessment. This onetime payment gives you access to take the assessment every 90 days to track your progress. Not an AARP Rewards member yet? Enroll in AARP Rewards.
What are the six pillars of brain health?
A healthy lifestyle protects the brain. Practice these six pillars for better brain health and BE MORE. The pillars of brain health are based on scientific research that shows that when you develop healthy habits based on all the pillars, you can help protect brain health. Staying Sharp empowers you to develop meaningful and lasting brain-healthy practices that are based on the six pillars.
- The Be Social pillar is about having strong connections with friends, family and your community.
- The Eat Right pillar is about getting the right nutrients to feed your brain.
- The Manage Stress pillar is about keeping stress under control.
- The Ongoing Exercise pillar is about staying physically active.
- The Restorative Sleep pillar is about getting quality sleep.
- The Engage Your Brain pillar is about challenging your mind.
What do you mean by evidence-based information?
Staying Sharp follows guidance from the Global Council on Brain Health. We also have a rigorous scientific review process for all content. The articles you’ll find on Staying Sharp are developed by professional health journalists who interview top doctors, scientists and researchers to bring you the latest science on brain health. Rather than rely on single studies that make headlines, we use these experts to help us evaluate the entire body of scientific research around a topic. Next, the content is thoroughly reviewed by our staff fact-checkers, who back up the writers and editors. In addition, our articles provide a link to relevant research so you can dig deeper into the scientific research.
Does Staying Sharp offer any voice-enabled Alexa skills for my Amazon Echo speaker?
Yes, one Alexa skill is available: The Staying Sharp Memory Game from AARP. Use voice commands to play simple games with words and numbers. The level of difficulty will adjust based on how well you’re doing. Alexa will give you feedback for each answer. When you finish a game, Alexa will reveal your score. To learn how to enable this skill on your Amazon Echo speaker, see the Voice Games link in the footer of this website.
What is the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment?
The Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment gives you a snapshot of how your brain performs, based on cognitive tests and how lifestyle affects brain health. You also receive personalized recommendations that are based on your results, so you can learn about science-based habits to help support brain health.
The core assessment combines lifestyle questions and five cognitive tests that assess areas like memory, attention and processing speed. Additionally, the core assessment includes questions to help you understand how lifestyle choices can affect brain health. You’ll an overall score and scores for each area.
The eight additional tests allow you to measure even more elements of cognition. They include tests in three areas: Non-Verbal Reasoning, Spatial Processing and Verbal Reasoning. You’ll get scores for each area.
Is there a fee for the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment?
Yes, AARP members can redeem 9,000 points for a digital gift card to take the assessment or make a onetime $14 purchase, which allows you to take the assessment every 90 days in order to track your progress. Not an AARP Member yet? Enroll in AARP Rewards.
If you are not an AARP member, the cost of Staying Sharp with the Brain Health Assessment is $60 per year.
How has the Assessment Evolved?
Through the Brain Health Assessment, Staying Sharp has always offered a core suite of cognitive tests, along with a lifestyle questionnaire on exercise, sleep, stress, nutrition, engaging your brain and being socially active.
The core cognitive tests measure areas that are central to cognitive brain function, like Memory, Attention, Cognitive Flexibility and Processing Speed.
We also added eight additional tests that cover Verbal Reasoning, Non-verbal Reasoning and Spatial Reasoning.
Are my previous scores still available?
Yes. The Core Brain Health Score has not changed, so you can continue to track your score over time. The additional suite of tests explores cognitive skills that are not included in the core assessment, allowing you to measure even more elements of cognition.
How do I use my Rewards points to take the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment?
Your AARP membership gives you exclusive access to digital gift cards you can redeem with points. Once you’ve earned 9,000 points, you can redeem the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment from the “Members Only” section of the AARP Rewards Catalog. After you click the redeem button, you’ll receive an order confirmation email from AARP Rewards that includes your redemption code. To start the assessment, you’ll need to click the link in the email and enter your redemption code.
I redeemed AARP points for the assessment. How do I start it?
Please check your email for the digital gift card that lets you to start the assessment. The email contains a link and a redemption code to access and start the assessment. You can learn more in the “How should I prepare for the Brain Health Assessment?" section.
What does the Brain Health Assessment measure?
The Core Assessment looks at your overall brain health after completing each cognitive test and the lifestyle questionnaire. You'll also get individual scores for each cognitive test (working memory, cognitive flexibility, sustained attention, recognition memory and processing speed) and lifestyle behavior (Be Social, Eat Right, Manage Stress, Ongoing Exercise, Restorative Sleep, Engage Your Brain).
The additional tests tell you what your score is in three areas: Non-Verbal Reasoning, Spatial Processing and Verbal Reasoning.
Your results will also include personalized recommendations so you can incorporate brain-friendly habits in your daily life.
How long does the full Brain Health Assessment take?
The Core Assessment and additional tests takes up to 40 minutes to complete. We recommend that you find a quiet place and finish it in one sitting. If you're interrupted or need to step away for some reason, you can pick up where you left off for up to one hour. After that, you may need to start over.
Where are my Brain Health Assessment results?
You should have your results in about five minutes, though sometimes it can take a few minutes longer. If your results are not available, please email StayingSharpHelp@aarp.org so we can help you.
How often should I take the Brain Health Assessment?
You can take the Brain Health Assessment every 90 days so you can track your performance over time. This also gives you time to learn about and incorporate any brain-friendly habits you choose into your daily routine in between assessments.
How does Staying Sharp personalize my recommendations?
Based on a comprehensive review of your assessment results, we'll provide Brain Health Challenges, articles, videos, activities, recipes, and other content so you can learn about brain-friendly habits.
How should I prepare for the Brain Health Assessment?
Watch this video to familiarize yourself with the Assessment.
To prepare for the assessment, please consider these guidelines:
- Find a quiet room with no distractions. Put your pets in another room and switch your phone to silent mode.
- Get a good night’s sleep the day before taking the assessment so you are well rested.
- Pay careful attention to the instructions before each test.
- Set aside up to 40 minutes to complete the assessment.
What is a Brain Health Challenge?
A Staying Sharp Brain Health Challenge is an opportunity to learn about and practice skills around memory, problem solving, focus and other areas. Challenges enable you to learn about an aspect of brain health, to explore the skill more by playing a fun digital exercise, and then to apply the new skills by choosing activities you can incorporate into your daily life.
What is an Activity?
Activities are actions you can incorporate into your everyday life.
What is My Plan?
My Plan is a great way to keep track of things that inspire you. When you find an article, activity or recipe you want to try, click the plus sign and it will be added to My Plan. You can mark items as complete or you can leave them in My Plan to remind you to work on the activity.
What is the Daily Puzzle?
The Daily Puzzle is a quick and fun puzzle you can solve each day. It's not interactive, so you may prefer to print it out to solve it. It's new every day so check in for your daily dose of the daily puzzle.
How do I get the answer to the Daily Puzzle?
The answer to the daily puzzle can be found by visiting the Daily Puzzle and clicking the Reveal Answer link underneath the puzzle.
What is the Brain PaletteTM Visual?
Express how you’re feeling by using this interactive feature to create your unique Brain Palette visual. You can generate your very own Brain Palette visual by simply adjusting the colors and brightness until you find the perfect hue that expresses how you're feeling.
How can I earn AARP Rewards points for badged Staying Sharp activities?
AARP Staying Sharp Members who are also AARP Rewards participants can earn AARP Rewards points for select Staying Sharp activities labeled with the AARP Rewards Badge. The latest eligible activities are available on the Earn List and are labeled as “Brought to you by Staying Sharp”. These activities will continue to evolve over time, so be sure to check out the Earn list on a regular basis.
How can I become an AARP Rewards Participant?
To learn about more ways to earn AARP Rewards points, visit https://www.aarp.org/rewards/earn/
How often can I earn AARP Rewards points for Staying Sharp?
Each designated Staying Sharp activity will vary, so we suggest you refer to the Earn List page which lists the frequency you can earn points for each of these activities.
Why do certain Staying Sharp activities qualify for AARP Rewards points?
AARP Rewards points are allocated to participants to incentivize them to engage with select Staying Sharp activities. These Staying Sharp activities are badged for AARP Rewards. Check back frequently as new activities are added to the program weekly.
I completed the badged Staying Sharp activity; why don't I see my points?
There are two reasons you may not see your points:
1. You’ve reached your daily max
- You may not be receiving additional points if you’ve maxed out on your daily point limit. Members can earn up to 7,500 points daily.
- Badges on activities will be grayed out if you’ve reached your limit. You can get back to earning points tomorrow at 12:01 a.m. ET.
2. You may have not fully completed the activity, for example, badged videos have to be watched until the end in order to receive points. Quizzes require you to submit the answers or required information at the end of the activity in order to receive points.
How do I use my Rewards points to take the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment?
Your AARP membership gets you exclusive access to digital gift cards you can redeem with points. Once you’ve earned 9,000 points, you can redeem the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment from the “Members Only” section of the AARP Rewards Catalog. After you click the redeem button, you’ll receive an order confirmation email from AARP Rewards that includes your redemption code. To start the assessment, you’ll need to click the link in the email and enter your redemption code.
What is the Global Council on Brain Health?
The Global Council on Brain Health (GCBH) is an independent collaborative of scientists, doctors, scholars and policy experts that was created to provide trusted information on how you can maintain and improve your brain health. The GCBH was convened by AARP in collaboration with Age UK, the United Kingdom's largest charity that's dedicated to helping everyone make the most of later life.
How does the GCBH impact Staying Sharp?
The GCBH looks at evidence-based scientific research on brain health to determine what lifestyle changes and activities may positively impact brain health, versus. those that do not, or are not as yet proven to have an effect. Specifically, it will look at each pillar of brain health to provide guidance on what actionable steps may be taken to promote a positive impact on brain health. Staying Sharp’s content and activities are aligned with, and will evolve with, the latest findings.
Does Staying Sharp meet accessibility standards (accessible to consumers with vision, hearing or sensory impairments)?
Staying Sharp generally complies with applicable accessibility standards. However, Staying Sharp also has content including the Brain Health Assessment and games that requires certain sensory skills. For example, in a cognitive memory test, a series of words appears on the screen for a few seconds, and then you are tested on what words were displayed. Staying Sharp also provides an array of
other activities for individuals with varying abilities.
How do I unsubscribe from your email list?
Click the Unsubscribe link at the bottom of your email.
What personal information does AARP keep on file, and how is it used?
Is my personal info secure?
Does AARP share my personal info or sell it to any other companies?
What is the relationship between Staying Sharp and AARP?
Staying Sharp is an AARP Member Benefit and was developed in order to offer AARP members with a trusted resource that takes the latest in brain science and translates it into engaging articles and everyday activities.
How can I order Staying Sharp for my company?
For partnership opportunities or bulk subscriptions, please reach out to our Business Development team.
How do I bookmark Staying Sharp?
In most browsers, you can bookmark Staying Sharp by using the tools next to your web address input field.
Is there a Staying Sharp app I can download?
Staying Sharp is not currently available via an app but is accessible via web browser on a desktop, tablet or mobile device.
I’m having trouble logging into the site. Now what?
What if I forget my password?
Click reset your password if you’ve forgotten your password.
What browsers are supported by Staying Sharp?
Staying Sharp supports Internet Explorer 11 and above, and we recommend always using the most recent versions of Firefox, Chrome or Safari for the best experience.
What if games do not play, or I see a blank page?
Please check your browser settings to block third-party cookies or to block the Adobe Flash plug-in. To work in your browser, some games may require third-party cookies or Adobe Flash.