(ABC) -It may strike you as an activity for kids only, but coloring books are making a big comeback, and they're saturating the market as a form of relaxation for adults, but do they work?
Dr. Joseph Rock, a psychologist at Cleveland Clinic, says coloring books for adults make sense for a lot of reasons, but mainly because they allow us to get out of our own heads.
"One of the things that I think adult coloring books can do, and there are other things that serve the same purpose, is it pulls you out of your head into what you're doing, okay, which is a better place to be, because what you're doing is in the present, not a future that scares you, or a past that you have remorse about," Dr. Rock said.
Dr. Rock says coloring provides relief that you can't always get from just watching TV. The intricate patterns and colors provide a distraction and makes it more difficult for your mind to wander off to whatever is bothering you. He says distraction can be good for you. He suggests, for people who are stressed, to look for an activity that draws them in, but that's not stressful. Coloring is good because it allows us to make decisions, which keeps the brain engaged.
"They're somewhat intricate, so you have to pay attention to what you're doing as opposed to getting preoccupied with other things. You're accomplishing something, so when you're done you have something to show for it,” Dr. Rock said.
Dr. Rock says if you don't have a coloring book, you can always try a similar brain game like crossword puzzles or activities like quilting, cross-stitch or even shooting some hoops in the backyard.
In other health news, be sure to mark your calendar for the free skin cancer screenings at the Leah M. Fitch Cancer Center in Lawton. It will be held on Saturday, May 14, from 8 a.m. until noon. To schedule an appointment, call 580-250-6565.
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