5 benefits of reading before bed

Whether you are an avid reader or not, many of us have experienced a time where we have read a book fictional or non-fictional and it has benefitted us in some way. It might have been for educational purposes or as a favourite pastime - either one has made way for reading to happen in our lives. A lot of people enjoy reading for more than wanting to increase in their knowledge. Whether it's with your feet kicked back on the sofa bed in your living room or if you are lounging on your ottoman bed relaxing before bed, there are many benefits to intentionally reading before bed. Read on for some insightful facts that might surprise you!

Benefit one: Reading before you sleep can increase your mental capacity

Reading permits you to absorb new information, which will undoubtedly improve your intelligence. Compound interest is how Warren Buffet describes the knowledge he's received through books. You get smarter as you study more.  

To reap the benefits, you don't need to read a lot of nonfiction. Even meaningless fiction and fantasy can help you learn new words and exercise your brain.

Benefit two: Reading before bed relieves you from stress

This is due to the fact that reading a good book, on any subject you like, diverts your attention away from the daily tensions and worries that produce tension. Stories allow you to transport your mind to another location for a short period of time. This means you can forget about your problems. Reading also relaxes your muscles, making you feel more relaxed. According to one study, reading for only six minutes can reduce stress by up to 68 per cent!


Benefit Three: Reading before bed improves your creative mind

Books help you to expand your horizons. They transport you to new realms, impart knowledge, and introduce you to new people. Based on what you learn in a book, you might obtain new perspectives on the world or discover new approaches to tackle an issue.

Keith E. Stanovich, an Emeritus Professor at the University of Toronto, is a renowned researcher in the field of reading psychology. In the study ‘Does Reading Make You Smarter’, the professor states, “Certainly, our data reveal time and time again that print exposure is associated with vocabulary, general knowledge, and verbal skills even after controlling for abstract reasoning abilities”. We can see a difference in all of these things by simply reading books.

Benefit Four: Reading before bed makes you more empathetic

Empathy is the ability to comprehend and share another's feelings. We get better at doing this by reading things from the perspective of someone else. We can experience the world through the eyes of others in literature and share their emotions. When we've practised this skill, it's a lot easier to use it in real life. 

Benefit Five: Reading before bed makes you fall asleep

The least and maybe the most beneficial reason is that reading before you sleep helps you to fall asleep. Reading affects your brain in a variety of ways, and despite its ability to invigorate it, it also has the potential to make it tired. When you're reading, your eye muscles are forced to scan the page swiftly and in a regular pattern, going from left to right. As you exercise your muscles more and more, your body can become exhausted, causing your eyes to close completely and cause you to nod off asleep!

Another way reading can make you sleep is if you do it in a place where sleep is associated, such as your bed. This occurs because your body has learned to link that location with sleep. As a result, as your muscles start to relax, a domino effect may ensue, and your body will begin to sleep against your will! So if you are reading with the aim of falling asleep, you can get a good book and curl up under the duvet on your hybrid mattress. However, if you are planning to read for an extended amount of time, it might be better to find a comfortable reading area such as on your sofa bed while it's in the sitting position or in a designated reading chair.  

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