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8 Health Benefits of Reading

8 Health Benefits of Reading for Seniors

Reading at any age can have a wide range of health benefits. Sitting down and diving into a book is easier on the eyes than staring at a screen, can relax you, and provide health benefits. A good read can be good for you in the long run, below are eight health benefits of reading.

Vibrant living is central to Brightview Senior Living and we understand the importance of multi-dimensional wellness. It’s a philosophy that shapes our culture. All Brightview associates are committed to creating a meaningful lifestyle for each resident, no matter where they are cognitively or physically. We use our SPICE wellness model to create this lifestyle - for residents and associates alike. 

At Brightview, wellness goes beyond a clinical function. SPICE, which stands for Spiritual, Physical, Intellectual, Cultural and Emotional, is at the heart of every Brightview Senior Living community. The five dimensions of wellness are just as important for associates. If we have happy, healthy, engaged associates, we inevitably have happy, healthy engaged residents. Our tagline is “great place to work, great place to live.” So often, aging is associated with decline and illness. We encourage everyone at Brightview, including families, to view aging as an opportunity. This is the next chapter, full of possibilities. That’s why we named our dementia training curriculum “Moments of Possibility.”

8 Health Benefits of Reading

  1. Builds empathy—literary fiction can facilitate your ability to recognize what people around you are thinking and feeling which increases your emotional intelligence and empathy skills
  2. Motivates you—reading about characters pursuing goals encourages you to emulate those activities in your personal life
  3. Enhances memory—your brain’s short-term memory and recall abilities are strengthened when working to follow different characters, each with their own background, history, personality and ambitions along with a story’s timeline, main plot, and subplots
  4. Staves off dementia—frequent brain exercises, including reading, are associated with a 32% reduction in mental decline while another study found that seniors who read books were 2.5 times less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease
  5. Increases brain activity—an MRI of the brain showed heightened activity in the left temporal cortex (associated with language and intelligence) the morning after reading 30 pages of a book the night before 
  6. Reduces stress—studies suggest a 68% reduction in stress after reading
  7. Improves sleep—a regular ritual of reading before bed signals your brain to prepare for relaxation and eventual sleep, helping you maintain a more regular sleep schedule
  8. Helps with depression—reading stories out loud, or even listening to stories read aloud, led to depressed patients report feeling better, having a more positive outlook, increased self-esteem and confidence, and better communication skills

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