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Books: Physical versus Digital

Reading is a practice that is necessary for all ages. But the days of reading only hardback books are long gone. Thanks to the rapid digitalization across the globe and the advancement of technology, reading from a screen is now easier than ever. However, the benefits of reading from a physical book as opposed to a screen is something that many of us frequently contemplate.

On-screen reading includes softcopy of books, pdf files, digital blogs, articles, even online newspapers, and many more. There are certain advantages and disadvantages of reading from a physical book or a screen. Wondering which option is better for you? Let’s find out.

Advantages of Reading A Physical Book

Physical books, that is, the classic printed version of books have multiple scientific backing on being beneficial to their readers. According to the research of the National Library of Medicine in 2013, researchers confirm that reading physical books and novels increases brain connectivity. It also shows an increase in the function of the bilateral somatosensory cortex of the brain.

This part of the brain responds to simulations like movement and pain. So, the research shows us that reading physical books has a direct connection with the functionality of our brain. Additionally, reading physical books helps our brain to stay focused, improve its cognitive function, and can even reduce stress.

From the research of a group of 30 researchers, it was seen that reading a physical book for 30 minutes a day can improve your overall health. It can lower your blood pressure, heart rate, mental or psychological distress, and more. This research successfully shows us how reading a physical book is equivalent to yoga and meditation for our bodies.

The doctors from Cleveland Clinic highly recommend parents read books to their children. It is a remarkable way for the parent to bond with the child and creates happy memories. Simultaneously, reading a hard copy of a children’s book to your children will help them improve their performance in the long run.

Apart from all that, reading a physical book has the advantage of preventing age-related cognitive decline, prevent depression, fatigue, and many more. Physical books allow you to retain more information. It is a wonderful way for you to spend your time and increase your knowledge significantly.

Advantages of Reading From Screen

The primary advantage of reading from a screen is that you can carry hundreds of books from you anywhere. E-books, e-libraries, and softcopy of books are efficient to store in one device. You can use numerous websites and platforms to read these books.

At the same time, you can find a free version of the softcopy of your favorite books online. This can be cost-efficient for many people. Especially for students and researchers, having documents just a click away can be highly beneficial.

Another advantage of reading from a screen allows you to reduce paper consumption. Especially for environmental activists, reading from a screen helps them build environmental sustainability practices.

Is It Better To Read Physical Books Or From The Screen?

From the reports of Harvard Medical School, the blue light from reading on screen can seriously disrupt your sleep cycle. On the other hand, reading paper books has a positive effect on improving your sleep.

Studies also show that readers learn less from reading on screen. So, by reading physical books you can retain more information. Reading from a screen reduces information absorption. Reading on the screen also makes your eyes work harder. It can damage your eyesight in the long run.

Hence, based on these scientific findings, it is safe to say that it is better to read physical books. They improve your physical and mental health significantly compared to e-books. Thus, you can have a healthy life with a healthy reading practice with physical books.

This content was provided by yours truly, Dig Detox. Our mission is to help people use technology safely as we believe health is our most valuable asset. For further articles, research, and information on the movement, please visit



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