Reading between the lines: the benefits of reading for pleasure (Billington, 2015) indicated the positive impact regular reading for pleasure has on health and well being and how it reduces isolation. The key findings include:
half of readers say that reading helps them sleep better;
regular readers reported fewer feelings of stress and depression than non-readers, and stronger feelings of relaxation from reading than from watching TV or engaging with social media;
reading creates a parallel world in which personal anxieties can recede, while also helping people to realize that the problems they experience are not theirs alone;
a fifth of respondents said reading helped them to feel less lonely;
readers have higher levels of self-esteem and a greater ability to cope with difficult situations.