Impact of reading on mental health

Impact of reading on mental health
Written By: Counselling Psychologist
M.Sc. Psychology - Swansea University, UK.
Reviewed By: Counselling Psychologist
MA Psychology Pennsylvania State University, USA
Last Updated: 31-03-2023

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Books are usually for attaining knowledge, and entertainment, but they re more beneficial in ways you can t imagine. Research and studies observed reading might improve mental health and interpersonal relationships.

Mental health refers to a person s condition of psychological and emotional well-being. How we think, feel, and act, and can draw upon nature or life experiences, can affect mental health. Although you can improve your mental health by numerous means, reading is a free method that improves your overall quality of life and not just your mental wellness.

Research shows that reading can boost your cognitive health and help keep stress away just like eating right and exercising to maintain physical health, reading strengthens the muscles in our brain and can help one wind down after a long stressful day, and it can even improve skills like memory and focus over time.

Let us check a few points on the benefits of reading

  • Improves concentration and focus

  • Develop creativity

  • Enrich the language and vocabulary

  • Reduces stress puts you in a better mood

  • Exercise your brain

  • Great and free source of entertainment

  • Good for memory

How Can Reading Impact Mental Health?

Increases ability to empathize
Reading creates empathy for other people in our minds. The most positive reaction to reading literary fiction is that it talks of non-fiction. People are social beings, and fiction lets us connect to the characters, in effect helps to increase empathy and understand their struggles.

Increases mental flexibility
Reading and reassessing the meaning of words leads to greater mental stability and adaptation to unique human actions and circumstances. Interested readers are far more likely than leading through instinct and habit to search for imaginative solutions.

Reading may reduce the risk of Alzheimer s
Reading activates the brain to avoid mental deterioration and symptoms of Alzheimer s. Reading has been shown to boost brain capacity and memory abilities through the development of new pathways and to keep Alzheimer s low in return.

Improves IQ and retrains the brain
When you read, your brain does far more than just interpret words on one page. Reading is more neurobiological challenging than visual recognition or voice delivery. This is a neural exercise. When you listen, various aspects of your brain — such as vision, vocabulary, and associative learning — work together.

According to one study, a reading-like mental stimulus can help protect memory and thought skills, particularly as you age. Visit to know more about online psychological counselling!

Increases spatial ability
Reading a book can also enhance one form of intelligence i.e. spatial intelligence can think in three dimensions. A person who specializes in mentally manipulating objects, enjoys drawing, and art, like designing, or constructing things, enjoys puzzles and excels in mazes.

Immersing yourself in good reading, you can separate yourself from the dilemmas or stress that you may have.

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