How Does Reading Reduce Stress in Children? A Comprehensive Guide

Written by: The Story of Sprout



Time to read 5 min


Attention, dear readers! Let it be clear that stress recognizes no age boundaries; its impact extends to adults and children alike. Sadly, we often underestimate its profound effects on our little ones. Thus we neglect the necessary measures to address it. However, there is a powerful remedy at hand, which is book reading. But pause for a moment and ponder; how does reading reduce stress?

The answer to this question is hidden in the rhythmic flow of words, the soothing tone of a narrator, or the gentle turning of pages that create a calming effect on a child’s mind.

Want to know all this in detail? No worries; this comprehensive guide will uncover how reading can significantly reduce stress in children. Furthermore, you’ll also get some super effective strategies to say goodbye to stress through book reading.

So are you ready to give your child a happier, healthier, and stress-free life? Let’s go!

Reading Reduce Stress in Children? A Comprehensive Guide
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Does Reading Reduce Stress in Children? How?

Who isn’t aware of the fact that engaging in the activity of reading provides entertainment? But when it comes to the point that reading also reduces stress, most people don’t believe it. A few years back, the University of Sussex revealed that reading for 6 minutes can reduce stress levels by 68%. Isn’t it amazing?  

Now you might be wondering how it is possible. To answer this ‘how part,’ we have shared some science-backed reasons that will give you a better idea about this fact. So let’s move forward:

  • Reading Offers Physiological Relaxation 
  • It Gives You a Matchless Mental Escape
  • Reading Makes Your Child a Coping Master
  • It Strengthens Parent-Child Bond
  • Why not discuss each point in detail so that no confusion is left behind? 

1. Reading Offers Physiological Relaxation

Reading is not just a leisurely activity for the mind; it also profoundly affects our physical well-being. But does reading reduce stress? Yes, because if we compare walking and reading, the latter is 300% more effective in reducing stress. Moreover, it has been found to have physiological effects promoting relaxation. 

When children engage in reading, the magic of getting engrossed in words helps to calm the sympathetic nervous system. It’s responsible for our “fight-or-flight” response. On the other hand, it activates the parasympathetic nervous system, known as the “rest-and-digest” response.  

This shift from heightened arousal to relaxation results in subtle physiological changes. Some of these changes are a decrease in heart rate, breathing rate, and a reduction in blood pressure. And all these promote tranquility. So there’s no confusion that reading reduces stress.

Moreover, reading is typically a sedentary act, so it requires minimal physical exertion. It allows the body to release tension. And as the muscles unwind, the body experiences a deepening sense of relaxation. 

2. It Gives You a Matchless Mental Escape

Are you still thinking, how does reading reduce stress? Reading offers your kids a stress-free life by providing them with a much-needed mental escape from the pressures of everyday life. So you won’t disagree that “Fiction is an escape from reality; it’s a way you can live hundreds, even thousands of lives,” says Anna Todd. 

As kids delve into captivating stories, they get a gateway to new worlds with relatable characters and emotional exploration. In this way, their minds are transported to a place where reality fades away. So children temporarily detach themselves from their concerns, including the pressures of school, relationships, and personal issues. 

This mental break allows their minds to recharge and find comfort, inspiration, and a much-needed mental getaway in the adventures within the pages. And all this is proportional to stress relief in the little minds. That’s why regular readers have lower rates of depression and anxiety than non-readers. If you also want your child to have such a peaceful mind, incorporate the habit of reading for stress relief in their daily routine. 

3. Reading Makes Your Child a Coping Master

Most children feel stressed because they can’t cope with the challenges they face in school or daily life. But don’t worry; reading helps children develop coping strategies for navigating life’s challenges. 

When fully immersed in books, children get exposed to various characters, scenarios, and emotions that mirror real-life situations. This way, they observe and learn how their favorite fictional characters cope with difficulties. They come to know about different coping strategies employed by characters in books. 

This identification and observation help them know they are not alone in their struggles. Thus they get comfort and reassurance, killing all the stress in their minds. So does reading reduce stress? Hell yes!

4. It Strengthens Parent-Child Bond Giving a Stress-Free Environment

Do you know parents play a significant role in regulating a child’s response to stress? Or it won’t go wrong to say that parents are the best therapists for kids to reduce stress. But for this, both parties must have a strong bonding. And reading together with your child is not only an excellent opportunity to strengthen your bond but also a stress-reducing activity. 

As parents and children snuggle up with a book, it offers undivided attention and creates a safe and nurturing environment. That’s how children express their emotions and discuss any stress they may be experiencing, deepening the emotional bond between parent and child. 

This shared activity strengthens the parent-child relationship, enhancing overall well-being. So if your child has poor mental health and is facing stress, indulge them in reading for anxiety relief. It would indeed work like magic!

5. Strategies to Kick Out Stress with Book Reading

After wondering; does reading reduce stress, you might think about which book-reading strategies you should apply to alleviate stress. To help you, here are some super effective strategies that aim to create a nurturing and engaging reading environment. Thus, they will encourage children to embrace the therapeutic power of books.

Let’s explore: 

  • Let your child choose books according to their interests. This way, reading will become a natural stress reliever.
  • Select books that directly address stress, emotions, and coping mechanisms.
  • Consistency is key to get the stress-reducing benefits of reading.
  • Look for story books that portray characters dealing with challenging situations and have healthy ways to manage stress. 
  • Design an inviting and cozy corner in your home as a special reading nook.
  • Go with audiobooks and read-aloud sessions as both are the best ways to reduce stress. 


Opt for Sprout- The Ultimate Stressbuster

As parents and caregivers, the question; does reading reduce stress still knocks at the door of your mind. Undoubtedly, reading relaxes your mind and is a powerful tool to combat stress and promote overall well-being. But wait, do you know which books to offer to your kids?

Get rid of this confusion, as Sprout is the ultimate stressbuster. It offers a unique opportunity to spark their imagination, expand their vocabulary, and foster a love for reading.

Engaging with this fairytale allows children to develop essential coping skills, boost their emotional well-being, and reduce stress levels.

So let the story of Woodsprout’s quest for knowledge and self-discovery alleviate the burdens of stress. Hurry up, order your copy of Sprout before it’s too late!