Although we might all have different tastes in terms of the types of content we read, it’s something that many of us do on a daily basis. Some people trawl through the newspaper to get their regular fix of what’s going on in the world. Others deal with the written word as part of their job, while there are those who reserve their reading time solely for rest and relaxation.

It’s not for everyone, granted, but it’s a hobby that can bring real joy and capture the imagination. But of course, as we get older, various ailments and conditions can affect our ability to read as much – or as well – as we’d like.

Whether it’s something you’ve done ever since you were first taught or a pastime you’ve only recently discovered, reading in later life can have multiple benefits. So, what are some of these advantages and how can you continue to make the most of them?


Why is reading so important in later life?

  • Passes the time: You’ve worked hard all your life, and now it’s time to put your feet up and relax. But for some, the days can seem long and lonely, so there’s nothing quite like getting stuck into a good book to occupy yourself. 
  • Keeps your mind active: Consuming books, newspapers, magazines, reviews etc also helps to keep you mentally sharp, encouraging you to process things in your mind and exercise the brain.
  • Widens your social circle: It may be worth seeing if there is a local library or book club near you. By joining, you could create the opportunity to meet other people. After all, it’s never too late to make new friends!
  • Takes you down memory lane: Reading can also help you recall the earlier periods of your life. It might be a story you read as a child, a poem you studied at school that really made you think, or even an old diary to transport you back to the past.


Top tips to help you continue reading

If you struggle with your sight in your later years, it might be worth using a magnifier to enlarge any text that you’re reading and avoid straining your eyes. If your condition is not quite as severe, a good pair of glasses may do the trick and will help to keep your eyes in as stellar health as possible.

One idea already touched upon is joining the local library or book club. The former will offer access to a huge range of texts, so you can explore multiple authors within your favourite genre or you can branch out and expand your repertoire. Signing up to a club, meanwhile, will give you the chance to meet some new people as well as read and analyse books that you may not have otherwise discovered.