How Reading Helps You Sleep Better at Night
Guest Blog by Brooke Chaplan
Reading is tremendous exercise for your brain. It has the same effect on your brain that running has for your body. When your brain is well exercised and happy, it’s able to do the things needed to allow you to sleep well. People who have done this can attest to how well it works. You don’t need to read for hours at a time. It doesn’t matter what you are reading, be it an encyclopedia or a dime store novel. Here are some of the benefits you gain by reading before going to sleep.
Reading Minimizes Stress
A study was done at the University of Sussex that focused on the way reading affects the brain. It showed that half an hour of dedicated reading does more to reduce stress levels than other traditional forms of relaxation. The study showed a 68 percent reduction in stress. Scientists think that there are two reasons why this happens. One is that your mind is completely immersed in the book, so your body is not as focused on its own tense muscles. The second reason is that reading allows you to escape from reality.
Reading a Printed Book Means No Screens before Bed
It can be hard to put the cell phone or mobile device away, especially right before you go to bed. Many have developed the habit of playing video games, checking social media, or watching videos on their phone before they go to sleep. Ditching the tablet and picking up a printed book does wonders for your ability to sleep peacefully.
Reading Makes Your Dreams More Enjoyable
When you dream, you dream about the people and events that took place during your day. If you spend time reading before you lay your head down, your mind may include characters and places from what you have read in your dreams. This means that the books you read before sleeping are dream food.
Reading Gives Your Body Permission to Shut down
Your body needs to shut down before it can shut off. For individuals battling with insomnia, experts recommend spending the hour before going to sleep doing a calming activity. Reading can be this calming activity, but you have to be selective with what you read. Obviously, reading a horror novel or a thriller is not going to give you a calm night’s sleep.
Reading before you sleep allows the tension of the world to fade out and relaxation to flow in. Pairing your reading with a low light, calming music, and a comfortable pillow and Dynasty mattress will be sure to help you get the rest you need. If you are battling with insomnia, it may be time to get rid of the tech and instead get stuck in a good book.
Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She recommends buying used heavy construction equipment for sale. For more information, contact Brooke via Facebook at facebook.com/brooke.chaplan or Twitter @BrookeChaplan