Reading reduces stress by 68%

Effects of reading on mental health

Experts say that when your mind is caught up in a good book, it only takes six minutes for your body to begin to relax. In fact, when reading was tested with a variety of traditional forms of relaxation, it reduced stress by 68% and was the highest ranked method among those tested.

Many people work to improve their mental health by creating a stress-free life. In fact, stress keeps you active by keeping you focused and alert during tough times, but prolonged stress can lead to depression. Finding books that engage you and keep you engaged, regardless of the subject matter, can help reduce the impact of stressful situations.

Another way that reading helps your mental health is to help you sleep. Making it a habit to read a book before bed helps people who have trouble sleeping more easily find their way to a state of calm. This is good news for people who are prone to mental health problems because people who have trouble sleeping are more likely to suffer from depression.

Keeping your brain active with activities like reading can also help slow memory decline. Studies have suggested that reading and engaging in mental activities can reduce your chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Tips for reading

Without a doubt, your daily life is already full of activities. You have work obligations and demands from family, friends, civic groups, and dozens of other tasks that eat up your time. But since mental health is such an important part of your overall well-being, finding time to fit reading and adding to your routine can be beneficial. Here are a few ideas to help motivate you to read.

– Set page goals before you start, because it’s easy to get distracted by family problems when you sit down to read. Set a goal of how many pages you will complete before you start, and only finish completing this goal early in the event of an emergency.

– Set up online tracking. Start a list on Goodreads or a site like it, and share your reading goals with your friends. As you progress, stay in touch with your team and let them know how you’re doing. Accountability is often a great motivator.

– Take the reading challenge. Libraries and literacy groups both organize reading challenges to get people excited about reading. Sign up for one of the challenges to get caught up in a wave of competition and fun. This is also great for promoting reading.

– Read across devices. All of the apps on your phone, computer, and tablet (like Amazon’s Kindle app) will sync, allowing you to always have access to your readings. Whenever you have some spare time, read a few pages. You’ll be finding new books before you know them.

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