A few years ago, adult coloring books took the world by storm. Although the craze has died down a bit since then, these books are still incredibly popular. Plenty of adults use coloring books as a form of therapy and stress relief. You might be wondering why adults have their own specialized coloring books. Well, children’s coloring books are not as intricate and stimulating as the adult coloring books. Take, for example, those published by Penny Publications, LLC. They’re more engaging and appropriate for older individuals who have a more mature attention span.
It’s easy to dismiss the activity as silly, but it’s actually scientifically proven to improve mental health. If you’re in need of a cheap and creative way to manage your stress and anxiety, this could be your answer. Still doubtful? Read on to find out how adult coloring books can improve your emotional and mental health.
Studies have shown that coloring activities relax the amygdala, the part of the brain that plays a role in the processing of emotions. It’s particularly active in situations where you feel afraid or stressed. The amygdala also controls our fight or flight response. It keeps us active and in a heightened state of panic and hyper-vigilance. Coloring is a calming activity that shuts this response down. This allows your brown to rest and relax. It’s an especially effective treatment for those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Coloring activates both sides of the brain’s cerebral cortex. This is an important system that controls attention, perception, awareness, thought, language, memory, motor skills, and coordination. The two hemispheres of the brain communicate with each other through this process. The act of coloring utilizes the logic-based section of the brain when choosing colors or patterns. It also helps you color within the lines, while selecting colors engages the creative thought process.
The act of coloring is similar to meditation. It allows you to enter a flow state where your brain is switched off from thinking other thoughts. You’re only focused on the activity you’re doing which helps alleviate generalized anxiety. Coloring is a great activity that promotes mindfulness, the ability to be fully present in a moment. It’s when you’re keenly aware of where you are and what you’re doing. In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by everything that’s happening around us. Mindfulness seeks to slow everything down and hone in on what you’re experiencing through your senses, what you’re thinking, and what you’re feeling. This is precisely what happens when you’re focused on coloring.
Blue light that’s emitted from electronic gadgets like laptops and phones can delay the release of sleep-inducing melatonin. This increases alertness and confuses the body’s internal clock. If you find yourself unable to sleep at night, one of the reasons could be because you’re using these blue light-emitting gadgets before bed. Coloring books are a great way to unwind and relax your mind before going to sleep without the harmful effects of blue light.
If you’re dealing with particularly distressing mental or emotional issues, coloring books may not be able to help much. It’s always recommended that you seek professional treatment. Coloring books are not the same as art therapy. However, if you need a hobby that puts your mind at ease when you feel anxious or stressed, coloring books can help with that.