The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum


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Patchy rain nearby

Reading Before Bed Improves Sleep

Quality sleep, better mental health, brought by reading
Maggie Seidel

The mindless scroll on TikTok, Instagram, or ESPN… moments merge into sleep-deprived minutes which ultimately result in tiresome mornings. There is, however, a solution to the seemingly insurmountable feat of teenage exhaustion: reading before bed. 

As with any new habit, discipline is required, but oftentimes well worth the mental fortitude. In the case of reading prior to sleep, the physical, emotional, and social benefits present a direct argument in support of updating your evening routine. To begin, reading before bed has been scientifically proven to reduce stress, improve cognitive functionality, and lead to a more restorative sleep. 

A study conducted by Cognitive Neuropsychologist Dr. David Lewis at the  University of Sussex found that reading before bed was the leading remedy for stressed adults. The study quantified that reading before bed yielded a 68% reduction in the stress levels of the adults in question, compared to only 61% reduction for those that listened to music and 42% for those that took a walk. The adults in the study only needed to read for 10 minutes to experience the anxiety-reduction benefits of this practice. 

Furthermore, reading as an exercise improves cognitive functionality in people of all ages, and it provides long term health benefits. A 2001 study cited in a Medium article titled ‘The Science of Reading Before Bed’ attests that “people who engage their brains in activity such as reading […] are 2.5 times less likely to develop the Alzheimer’s Disease.” As such, reading not only reaps immediate benefits of mitigating stress but also future protection against disease.

Moreover, the aforementioned article affirms that reading before bed creates the ideal mental environment for the most restful and restorative sleep. Reading before bed as a habit establishes healthy norms surrounding sleep-cycles and enables your body to relax prior to falling asleep. 

It is clear that reading before bed is the ideal preparatory activity before sleep. So, here are a few of my personal favorite novels to propel you in your new habit-constructing process: 

  • A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson 
  • It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover 
  • People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
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About the Contributor
Maggie Seidel, Editor Emeritus
Hi, I’m Maggie! I am a senior in the Class of '22. I am the former Managing Editor and Business Manager, who also edited the Opinions Section, Student Life, Features, Games & Ads, Perspectives, and In-Depth during my four year tenure on Spectrum. I am excited to continue in my role as Editor Emeritus & will certainly remain a subscriber to Spectrum to learn about happenings at Blake. 

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