A lot of people detest reading. They find it to be boring, useless and a waste of time that could be spent doing just about anything else. But, before ruling it out and opting to watch a show or scroll through social media, instead consider the benefits that reading can have. 

From improving mental health, to reducing stress, reading anything; such as a book, magazine or online article can be really helpful with escaping the hardships of life. The simple truth is, not enough people give reading a chance. 23%  of American adults have admitted to not reading a book in full, which is roughly a quarter of the country. When people are not required to read, many choose not to. But considering the benefits, maybe they should be. 

Reading can be very beneficial for mental health, as it strengthens the brain and helps with brain activity. According to Healthline, MRI scans have shown that reading involves a complex network of signals and circuits in the brain. The more a person reads, the stronger those networks become. It also exposes the reader to new things, and helps a person gain knowledge without it even feeling like learning. A person can improve their literacy and concentration, just by picking up a book or magazine from time to time. 

It is common knowledge that life can be difficult and scary sometimes, but reading something enjoyable can be a great way to escape for a short while. Although some forms of escapism, such as drugs and alcohol can be dangerous and risky, reading is a healthy way to take your mind off of stressful things, and benefit your health instead of harming it. 

It has been found that specifically works of fiction are often used by stressed out teenagers as a form of escapism from their daily lives. One main reason some people may not enjoy reading is simply because they are not reading the right thing for them. Finding the right book to read can really help the mind drift off for a while and escape the stressors of life.

A 2009 study conducted by the University of Sussex found that reading can reduce stress by 68%. Reading a book is a great distraction from the daily stresses of life, and can help ease the mind. According to the University of Minnesota, reading can also lead to a lower heart-rate and more relaxed body, therefore reducing stress and anxiety. 

And although reading has many benefits, some people are not convinced. It is commonly believed that reading for an extended period of time can cause eye strain and take time away from physical exercise, leading to unhealthy habits. However, it is a myth that reading causes permanent damage to the eyes, as there is no evidence to prove that it does. 

Moreover, most of those alleged negative effects can just as easily be caused by watching T.V. or scrolling on social media, which is usually much more common than reading. Besides, most of these negative things do not affect everyone and there are plenty of different ways to prevent them from happening in the first place. According to the Atlantic Eye Institute, reading in proper lighting, as well as taking frequent breaks can reduce eye strain and prevent future eye issues caused by reading for extended periods of time. 

People should set aside a few minutes of their day to read something that genuinely interests them. That way they do not get bored of it, or experience any of the negative effects that come with reading too much or for too long. Just by taking 20 minutes to read every day, it can improve mental health and reduce stress that comes with daily life.