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Reading at bedtime can improve overall well-being

Reading may aid in bettering over health. © Shutterstock

Apart from helping you to sleep better, here are some of the other health benefits of reading a book before sleeping.

Written by Paras Hemrajani |Published : October 13, 2019 6:42 PM IST

Do you remember hiding under the covers along with a flashlight just to finish another chapter of your book? It's time to resurrect this childhood habit. Your daily ritual of reading before you go to sleep is the secret your health and well-being. It is already known that reading before bed helps in improving sleep pattern and sleeping habits. A study conducted back in 2009 by the University of Sussex proved that just six minutes of reading can reduce a person's stress by 68 per cent, clearing the mind and preparing the body for sleep. Reading at bedtime helps relax the body and pave the way to sleep. But according to some new study conducted by Sleep Junkie in 2019, the benefits of reading at bedtime is not limited to sleep patterns.

Benefits of reading at bedtime

It's time to ditch your technology and social media and grab a book. Apart from inducing sleep, there are plenty of reasons why you should read a book at bedtime.

Improves cognitive function

A quick read before bed can make you smarter. According to a research at the Northern Illinois University, people who read before bedtime perform better on the tests of cognitive functioning. Reading at bedtime also helps in improving vocabulary and generalised knowledge in the individual.

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Helps mitigate mental health concerns

Not able to sleep because of your anxiety or depression? Try reading a book. Disturbance in sleep pattern will increase depression in an individual. Reading a book can help in reducing stress and improve sleep pattern, alleviating the symptoms of depression.

Stave off Alzheimer's

Although Alzheimer's cannot be prevented, anything that stimulates brain activity and functioning can decrease the risk of Alzheimer's in an individual. According to the National Institute on Ageing, adults should read regularly to keep up mental alertness.

Reduces cortisol level

Do you feel a headache as you wake up? Cortisol is responsible for waking a person up from a deep sleep, high level of cortisol makes it hard to go to sleep and can lead to chronic stress, weight gain, gastrointestinal problems, depression and chronic fatigue. Reading before bedtime can help in reducing the cortisol level in the body and the risk of headache.

You will be able to concentrate better

Because of social media and technology, people have lost the habit of reading, they skim over the text and never really concentrate on anything. Reading before bedtime, develops the habit of concentrating on the text. With no visual aid like computer or smartphone involved, you would process the information much better.

Reduces the screen time

Blue light emitted from the screen-gadgets like smartphones, laptop or even television, can interfere with the brain's ability to secrete melatonin, a hormone that makes us feel sleepy. Too much screen time can also affect the eyes. Reading and rolling our eyes on a screen, reduces our blink rate, which causes dry eyes, irritation, blurry vision, burning, heavy or tired eyes, eye strain, and even tearing up.

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