Crafting can do more to improve your health than you might realize. For starters, crafting can help ease stress by lowering your heart rate and decreasing your blood pressure. The rhythm and sounds of crafting — such as the motion of crocheting and the soft clicking of the metal needles during knitting — can create a “flow state,” or a meditative frame of mind that is found by many to be calming and soothing. Try crafting before bedtime to help relieve insomnia.
Movements made while crafting can also help ease the pain of osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint disease that develops slowly as we age. If you spend 40 hours each week typing on a keyboard and you are noticing joint pain and discomfort, find a few weekend crafts to keep your hands and fingers moving in low-impact ways. Try completing a crossword puzzle one weekend, assembling some paper origami over the next weekend and drawing in a coloring book after that.
Crafting can even help boost your self-esteem, improve your mood and increase your sense of wellbeing by reducing anxiety. When we experience achievements of any kind — no matter how small — our brains release dopamine, which is also known as the “reward chemical.” So finish a painting, find that elusive puzzle piece or complete a Sudoku puzzle and feel good about yourself.
Crafting is a small activity that can have a big impact on your health, including lowering your blood pressure, improving your mood and helping you sleep, all while keeping your mind sharp and your hands flexible. See the accompanying resource to learn more.
AUTHOR BIO: Anna Baker is Social Media Manager for Crafts by Numbers, a provider of premium paint by number products. Baker has more than a year experience within the industry and focuses on managing various social networks.