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Periodic Depression Alleviated By Reading Romance Novels

Updated on October 13, 2014

Reading For The Soul

Though it may sound ironic, reading may relieve depression or depressive symptoms since there are several similarities between reading and improved moods.

Reading does not only serve as a stress reliever or a pass time hobby but can help to improve ones overall mental wellness.

For many avid readers this may be a sigh of relief even suggesting the versatility of reading. Those who enjoy reading do so for a particular purpose. That commitment can be very individual. Some read to gain insight into current situations by way of self-help books. Others may appreciate reading fiction to allow their creative side to flourish. Whatever the reason reading is a beneficial activity and a freeing habit to covet.

In addition to reading alone, book clubs create the opportunity to make connections and friendship so that what was revealed in your last read does not have to be contained but rather shared. Oprah helped give media attention to the connectedness book clubs could offer as she openly shared on her show her monthly reads. For many, reading has manifested into something greater than an individual interest and has matured into great relationships and long-term friendships.

Source

Common Signs of Depression

  • Lack of interest of doing things that were once enjoyable
  • Feeling tired
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Mental fog or fatigue
  • Lack of motivation
  • Inability to carry out daily tasks

The Downfall of Depression

The symptoms related to depression are unable to be ignored by those that experience such low moods and lack of motivation. These are symptoms that are unable to be fully controlled or eradicated. Depression comes as a result of improperly produced chemicals needed for “happy” moods. When depression first comes on it may feel like a sense of tiredness or lack of motivation. Though it can manifest into something much greater such as the inability to get out of bed and do regular routine tasks. For some depression is completely debilitating.

Catching it at its first signs is best when trying to cope with the symptoms and may also help to reduce the severity of low moods. It may also support lessening the duration of depression. For those that experience depression it can come on in an ebb and flow or may be a constant feeling of low mood. Frequently a person experiences depression for such an extended period of time that it becomes the norm and they may lose sight of having better moods.

Is Reading and Mood Connected?

Only you may know the distinct reason for reading but what cannot be ignored is how reading enhances to your internal world. A world that needs to be built up with love and nurturance but is free of damage and overexposure. A place that left in the unknown will never be powerful enough to reveal the source of your love to read.

But knowing your purpose of reading can be particularly helpful. Useful in the sense of continuing to fulfill that need or desire. Knowing when to read and when to pull back. As with any hobby the fun can be sucked right out the moment it becomes a duty.

So let’s focus on romance novels for a moment, the whole reason this article is relevant. Studies have shown that sex and orgasm creates serotonin in the brain. That is one key ingredient that is either missing or under produced in the depressed brain. So the connection being made is almost magical.

Can one really produce serotonin by reading romance novels?

I would answer of course.

Reading romance novels can produce endorphins in the body upon being aroused. I am not a fool to ignore the craze of certain romance series and the effect they have on their readers. People are not all of the sudden creating reading groups, blogs and chattering about these books for no reason. It is clear that readers are indulging for the internal effect the words on the page have.

I am not going to get into the gossip of why a person reads these sorts of books but what I will say is this concept is brilliant. Reading to increase the mood by way of sexual arousal produced when reading is at the hands of anyone who chooses to use this method. There is no required prescription or other restriction that limits a person from trying this system.

Read and create serotonin. There you have it. A true serotonin mill.

What is even better – you don’t have to leave your bed to do it. So even when depression is on the up rise reading can be an answer or at least a far-fetched idea worthy of trying.

Recommended Reading

Alright so romance novels are an age old category and many collections have been popular throughout the years. Who remembers the days of Fabio, the male sex symbol plastered on the cover of over 400 romance novels? Often the books read with his face on it helped the reader to fantasize about the image on the cover. Though not the only cover symbol as some came before and after his sexiness, Fabio was undoubtedly a popular symbol.

The popularity of romance novels are not ending and current series mentioned below are all the craze. I wonder how many of those readers are depressed. That would be an interesting research study but that is another place and another time.

For now here are some recommended reading that may help to increase your mood.

Have you read 50 Shades of Grey?

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Fifty Shades of Grey

Of course I would start here. This series has gained great attention by readers as the sexual content is pretty enticing. Perfect read to boost serotonin.

Alpha Billionaire

Also a trilogy where two young girls agree to perform as dancers for a rich guy’s bachelor part. And by the looks of the cover it is pretty seductive and worthy of taking a peep.

Night Moves

Who doesn’t love Nora Roberts? A bestseller and skillful writer in the genre of romance. That is just one of her books, I am sure you cannot go wrong when reading one of her novels.

Slightly Sinful

I didn’t forget about our male readers. As a recommended read for men by Amazon this is a seductive novel about a male soldier who finds himself in a brothel full of women.

Do You like reading romance novels

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Reading To A Happier You

I hope these suggestions and grand idea can be helpful for countless people that experience depression. Though this is not intended as a cure or to alleviate severe long-term depression. Trying new activities at the start of depression has been known to reduce the severity or length of the depression. If your depression has reached lengths that have brought on suicidal thoughts or the inability to function for an extended period of time professional help may be needed and required. The information contained is for the sole purpose of a self-help strategy and not meant to diagnose or treat depression. That can only be done by way of a professional.

Happy Reading

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    • mdscoggins profile image
      Author

      Michelle Scoggins 3 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Thanks Kim - a great reason to get lost in romance reading :)

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Seductive, evocative, perhaps just the right medicine...Not only informative, but enjoyable...

      Smiles,

      Kim

    • mdscoggins profile image
      Author

      Michelle Scoggins 3 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Hi Tricia, thanks for the response. There is no proven data that I know of except for that sex increases serotonin which is lacking in the depressed brain. So add serotonin and reduce depression.

    • profile image

      Tricia Deed 3 years ago

      Very interesting article. I have never heard of romance novels helping people with depression.

    • mdscoggins profile image
      Author

      Michelle Scoggins 3 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Thanks DrBill for sharing your story. Glad it worked for you.

    • DrBill-WmL-Smith profile image

      William Leverne Smith 3 years ago from Hollister, MO

      Well done. I read over 400 romance novels, a number of years ago, to increase my reading speed before I returned to college (past the age of 50) to complete my PhD studies. It worked. I'd never have been able to do all that reading without that exercise! True story! ;-)

    • mdscoggins profile image
      Author

      Michelle Scoggins 3 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Thanks Word55. Thought I'd put a twist in how to treat depression :)

    • word55 profile image

      Word 3 years ago from Chicago

      Very good mdscoggins, you're right on the money!